Not all people are lucky to have their own house complete with a pool or a patio. Some people live in condominiums or high rise apartments. If you're one of those lucky ones who have a patio, you've probably thought of designing your patio to look and feel more comfortable and functional.
If you already have the basics done, like the flooring, roof, and railings, the next step is to choose your furniture. Although there have been limitations in outdoor furniture designs in the past, there is now plenty of stylish and cozy patio furniture.
If you miss your sun-kissed, summer skin - A pair of a rattan chaise lounge in beige or natural color with cushions should bring back those good old bikini and trunk days. Choose an outdoor fabric like Sunbrella for the cushions if you're planning to place these near your pool. Complete the look by adding some colorful pillows and a bright yellow beach towel.
Tip: Choose synthetic wicker instead of rattan or real wicker. It looks just like wicker because of its basket-like weave but is water-resistant, easy to clean, and better suited to withstand the weather elements.
If you want to forget all your troubles for a while - A swinging chair does the trick. It could be a rattan chair, a daybed, or even a bench rocker that will gently rock you to sleep. A daybed is wide enough to accommodate a kid or two for a warm snuggle while swinging the day away. Fill it up with cushions for a perfect place to take a lazy afternoon nap. How about a macrame hammock if your space is small?
Tip: Don't have a space to hang it on? There are swinging chairs with frames. There is no need to use the ceiling. Some hammocks come with hanging accessories and stands. They don't need to be supported by posts or trunks.
If you want to rekindle your Santorini vacation - Get yourself a dome-shaped or teardrop daybed and make your nook that will keep you shaded from the sun. Buy them with cushions in upholstered and fade-proof fabrics like Sunbrella and be prepared to have a summer retreat in your very own patio.
Tip: You can also get a daybed with a retractable canopy to bask in the fresh air while you lounge around.
If you want to feel like you're in Paris - Bistro tables are always a sophisticated addition to a small patio. Put a small potted plant as your centerpiece, and eat that baguette or croissant for breakfast. If you're planning to put it in an unshaded area, make sure to get umbrellas for shade and protection. There are also bistro tables that come with holes for outdoor umbrellas.
Tip: Get folding bistro sets that are easy to store away when winter comes.
If you want the Tuscan feel - Get beautifully carved wooden furniture in teak. Add some trellises and let vines crawl through the lattices. Matte metal furniture is also used a lot in Tuscan designs.
Tip: Use earth-toned furnishings like terracotta or warm brown, greyish beige-colored pillows and rugs to complete your Tuscan set-up.
If you want to keep everyone's toes and fingers warm, treat your guests to a warm night by getting a fire pit that will keep them warm, but hey smores anyone? Add heavy and large meal lanterns that won't be blown away by the wind. Add throws, rugs, and patio heat lamps to keep everyone warm and toasty.
Tip: Don't just cover the grill yet. Cold nights will be the perfect time to fire up a restaurant or brick oven, serving hot delicious meals and keeping everyone's tummies warm and full.
If you want to go full-blown Bohemian - Go ahead and throw out all those floor cushions and lots of it. Get rugs, hang those macrame hammocks, add poufs, and consider adding a sheer outdoor curtain. Add string lights to elevate the romantic mood.
Tip: With Bohemian style, you can subdue your color palette with pastel colors or a monochromatic palette or go eclectic and choose different patterns and textures and make it colorful and wild.
If you want to feel like you're in a spa - Use plenty of synthetic wicker lounge chairs in neutral or cool colors that are easy on the eyes. Use sheer canopies, add patio umbrellas for protection, and infuse a water fountain to create the perfect calming retreat.
Tip: Use cantilever and tilting umbrellas big enough to cast you some shade even when you decide to move to a different lounge chair.
If you want to give your friends a good time - Go and get a small bar table if your space does not allow for a built-in bar. Equip it with some drinking glasses and a mini-fridge if there is still space. Complete the look by adding bar stools. A bar table and high seats are also an excellent substitute for dining sets that may sometimes occupy a large portion of space in your patio.
Tip: Impress anyone with a mobile bar cart that you can push around to serve refreshments to your guests. It also serves as a special place for your liquor and glasses, as well as ice buckets.
If you need more space in your patio - For limited space, consider getting dual-purpose furniture like a picnic table that folds into a bench or daybeds with attached canopies to eliminate the need for an umbrella. Get space-saving furniture like a dining table with angled chairs that stow perfectly underneath when not in use.
Tip: Buy furniture that has built-in storage underneath like benches and ottomans.
Suppose you want to explore getting shaded while dining without the center pole of an umbrella, obstructing a portion of the view or a part of your guest's profile. Buy offset outdoor umbrellas, also known as Cantilevers, instead. They are highlighted with an arched or jointed pole positioned off to one side.