Garden Furniture - Guide4Home Overview

Popular styles of garden furniture

Garden furniture

Garden furniture is the Cinderella of the furnishings world. We're careful with our couches, browsing through endless catalogues before making a purchase, then making sure they stay as pristine as possible. But the same loving care doesn't apply to purchases of garden furniture. Sometimes we don't even buy it at all - we inherit it from the property's previous owners. It's also more likely than other furniture to face the wrath of the elements, but we don't give it the same TLC we'd give a favorite dresser.

However, neglect is going out of fashion, and it's becoming very trendy to take more care with your garden furniture. The focus on "kerb appeal" (how your house looks to the outside visitor) is just one of the reasons why the spotlight is on gardens this season.

Shabby chic was once the confused child of vintage and boho, but it's now become a design strand in its own right. The freshness of a garden is an essential element of the shabby chic look, which is perhaps another reason why garden furniture is getting some much-overdue attention. Wrought iron furniture is the key to achieving the look in your own garden. It's best to paint it in one of the traditional colors for garden furniture: white or green. If the paint flakes, so much the better; it's meant to be shabby, not shiny.

Another popular material for garden furniture is wood. We go to the garden to be closer to nature, so why not choose a natural material for your furniture? Although wood isn't as durable as plastic, it is possible to find wooden garden furniture that can cope with changes in the weather. Softwoods are a good choice, because they're easier to shape to create a comfortable seat. Hardwoods are more durable, but not as comfortable. If you choose a softwood, such as pine or spruce, you should make sure that the furniture is treated to make it more resistant to rain. Tanalised softwood has been pressure-treated with a blend of copper and arsenic to make it last longer and resist damp. Teak is a popular wood for garden furniture and both looks good and lasts well.

Metal garden furniture is a good option too, especially if your garden is minimalist and urban-looking. Shiny aluminum looks good if you have trendy garden sculptures and a Zen water feature. However, it doesn't look so good in a country-style garden with roses and violets. Aluminum is a good material because it's light and hardwearing.

Although this new focus on garden furniture has made us investigate new options, it won't be long before traditional plastic furniture makes a comeback. Plastic has a lot to recommend it, as it can take an awful lot of bad weather without looking any the worse for wear, and it's easy to wipe clean. It's also less expensive than other materials. If you're thinking of buying plastic garden furniture, try to avoid the traditional white. It's possible to buy it in so many different shades, including forest green, blue, and even black, so it's a shame to choose white as a default option without even considering the alternatives.

Positioning your garden furniture: lawn or patio?

When you've bought your garden furniture, it's time to position it in the garden - should it be in the center of the lawn or on the outdoor patio? Some of us want to soak up the rays all day long, while others want to keep the sun out of their eyes. Most households contain a mixture of such people, so compromise by finding someplace with the right balance of sun and shade. Then fix yourself a cool drink and relax.




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