choosing patio furniture

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Summer means spending the weekends lazing in the pool, and of course, enjoying some grilled food with family and loved ones. And what is the most important aspect for an awesome al fresco dining? The furniture of course! An outdoor get-together cannot be complete without the right seating arrangements. Fortunately, there are many options for garden furniture in Toronto and Mississauga, with which you can make your backyard come alive. This post will help you buy durable and stylish outdoor dining furniture pieces that will prove their worth in the long run.

Choosing the Right Furniture for Your Patio

Furniture is the focal point of any décor, and the outside space of your home is no exception to that. There are a lot of things that you can do with your patio since there is a lot of opportunities for using vibrant colours and textures in summer. From a classic décor to a more casual setting, from outdoor beds to patio loveseats, and from ottomans to picnic tables, there is a wide range of variety. Want to know the best part? You do not need to bother about the size of your patio or deck. Whether you are looking for a complete set of garden furniture or want to mix and match some essential pieces, there will be something that is suitable for your setting.

Here is the list of factors you need to consider for choosing the right furniture, whether you are looking to create an inspiring outdoor dining space or for hosting a barbecue.

1. Purpose

Outdoor Dining Furniture – Patio & Garden Furniture

Before we begin, it is always better to make a list of a few things. Figure out what will be the functionality of your outdoor space before anything else. Spending a quiet afternoon reading books, and hosting several guests for a party require a different arrangement. Decide the purpose of your outdoor space first and use that to guide you in choosing the furniture accordingly. For example, a casual evening with cocktails requires no dining table. Instead, choose a lot of side tables, some comfortable seating and a fire pit.

2. Size and Seating Capacity

When it comes to buying any kind of furniture, size is the most important factor, apart from style and material. Outdoor tables come in various shapes and sizes, and some even have expandable options to accommodate a large number of guests. When it comes to open-air dining, the key is to allow at least 18 to 24 inches of space for each guest to sit comfortably.  Also, keep a minimum of 6 to 12 inches of space between the settings. Since dining tables are 28 to 30 inches tall in general, the chairs should be within the 18 to 20 inches parameter as well.

3. Proportion

Next comes the proportion of the furniture to your outdoor space. According to interior designer Lisa Gilmore, the scale is of utmost importance, especially if you have a small patio.

“I often find people shove large-scale outdoor sectionals in small patios or too many chairs crammed in a space. Your outdoor space should be as comfy and well planned as your interior”, she says.

It is better to measure your outdoor space first and then choose the furniture.

4. Climate

When you live in an area like Toronto or Mississauga, the weather can get very unpredictable. In this case, you should go for outdoor furniture that is durable, and is resistant to warping, cracking, and discolouration. When you choose the material, the weather needs to be kept in mind. For example, some types of wood are susceptible to excessive moisture and you can apply a waterproof coating for protection. For a windy place, furniture with heavier wrought iron should be preferred over plastic ones.

5. Material

Minimize the maintenance of your indoors and choose easy-to-care patio furniture.  “Will teak withstand the weather or should you opt for a coated metal option?”, asks Lisa Gilmore. Since, most teak, metal, and all-weather wicker furniture are resistant to almost any weather conditions, they make a fine choice for your outdoor furniture. Teak adds tropical glamour to your otherwise modern outdoor, while the wicker ones are a perfect addition to a vintage setting. If you cannot make up your mind, then simply choose wooden furniture. These are versatile and can easily blend into any décor.

6. Colour Scheme

Outdoor Cushions for Patio Furniture

You might be wondering which colour pattern will suit your patio the most. The good news is that there are more options than just the natural wood tone for your patio furniture. A smart idea is to choose bold coloured cushions and accent pieces for a decoration which will not go out of style very soon. For the monochromatic homes with white interiors, white and cream fabrics are the best. But you can introduce some grays and browns too for adding some contrast. It all comes down to your personal aesthetics in the end.

7. Dual Purpose

Even though outdoor furniture varies a lot from indoor ones, there are some exceptions. To make the transition from indoor to outdoor seem effortless, a lot of décor items has been introduced that are designed for both indoor and outdoor use. For example, you can pair a black and white rug with some light woods and concrete pieces. Sturdy furniture, like the ottoman, can work both as an extra seating space as well as a stand-alone bench. Place it by a dining table and you get the perfect arrangement for some alfresco dining.

8. Storage

Even something as tough as teak or wrought-iron needs to be kept safe for them to last long. When not being used during the offseason, keep the furniture in a protected place, like a garage or a basement to prolong its life. In case you have limited storage, choose folding patio furniture or furnishing that can be disassembled easily for storing.

Contrary to popular belief, it is better to have a smaller outdoor space than a larger one, because it encourages you to keep things simple. Even though the houses are usually quite spacious in places like Toronto or Mississauga, outdoor furniture that is compact and serves multiple functions are a better choice for using your available space to its full potential. However, with these above tips, you should have no problem finding some suitable garden furniture for your backyard.