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Patio and Deck Furniture

Updated on April 2, 2013

Adding Furniture to Your Patio or Deck

Once you begin your quest for outdoor furniture, you’ll find that you will have a large amount of varied styles of patio and deck furniture to choose from. Even hardware stores like Home Depot and Lowes usually have a larger selection to choose from than department stores.

And if you decide you would prefer to go for a funkier look and save money on furnishing your deck or patio, then your options have expanded even more.

No longer are we limited to ugly, uncomfortable, woven aluminum frame chairs. Yes, I’m aging myself but that’s how it was when I was growing up.

Now the brand name outdoor furniture looks plusher than some people’s living room sets. Then there are the extras that add more functionality to your deck or patio – the fire pit, canopy or awning, and electric lights.

Comfortable Patio Set

Patio Conversation Sets

The title of this module, patio conversation sets, fits perfectly with its advantageous set up. You’re outside socializing rather than having a living room set up which usually revolves around TV watching.

Patio conversation sets come with standard sized couches or love seats with some type of table or table group included. They usually have cushioned seating and are made from long lasting materials.

Depending on the size of your deck and the average number of people you anticipate entertaining, you should pick your grouping accordingly.

Buy the patio conversation set that fits comfortably on your deck. You don’t want to overcrowd the space you have. You have to remember to account for through traffic and other items like a gas grill that will eat up some of your floor space.

My best advice is not to go too large with this type of purchase. You can always add a random chair here and there if you decide you need additional seating room.

Conversation patio and deck furniture sets come in wood, wicker, aluminum, steel, rattan, and wrought iron. For people that are “green” conscious you can even purchase a set made from recycled plastic.

Outdoor Umbrellas

Formosa Covers 7ft Wooden Market Umbrella with tilt Mechanism - Terra Color
Formosa Covers 7ft Wooden Market Umbrella with tilt Mechanism - Terra Color
This solid hardwood market umbrella has a handy tilt mechanism. It comes in a bright red polyester fabric.

The Funky Look

The great thing about decks and patios is you can go for the finished, sophisticated, matching look or you can go funky. Anything goes.

When you're shopping for patio or deck furniture sets, you’ll find a variety of styles including vintage, rustic, and formal.

If your money situation doesn’t allow you to buy new furniture for your patio, that's not a problem. Scour garage sales and second hand stores. People discard perfectly fine pieces of furniture that just need a little tender loving care to fit in with your décor.

Use your imagination when you are searching for patio and deck furniture. You should also take a good look around your garage or attic. Think about adding a coat of outdoor paint to a table or other found item. Colors don’t have to match. Color will brighten up the area since most decks and patios consist mostly of earth tone colors.

Retro Outdoor Furniture

4D Concepts 71350 Metal Retro Glider
4D Concepts 71350 Metal Retro Glider
Retro style glider from Amazon. Decorated in a vintage lime green. Constructed with metal.

Build Your Own Outdoor Furniture

Taking Care of Your Patio and Deck Furniture

You must take of your outdoor furniture as well as your deck when these items are exposed to the elements. Even if your outdoor area has got some type of roof or awning for protection, the air alone can cause problems that you have to stay on top of. When the weather is too dry, wood dries out. When the air is too humid and damp, you can end up with a mold or mildew problem.

Wooden furniture that is covered with stain or paint can be cleaned up with mild dish soap and some water. Rinse off the soapy water and dry completely. Furniture made with unfinished wood can be cleaned with a mixture of 1 cup ammonia and ½ cup vinegar added to a gallon of water. I highly recommend you add and maintain some type of wood protective sealant once the piece is cleaned up.

Metal furniture can be spruced up with mild soap and water. This will usually help clean aluminum, steel, and iron furniture. Scuffs in the metal can be eradicated with a sponge and a nonabrasive cleaner.

If you find any rust, gentle remove it with fine sandpaper. After you’ve done with this step, spray it with a rust-resistant paint for exterior surfaces. For added protection after this step – apply some car wax to add a coat of protection.

Wicker is a popular choice for furniture materials. Wicker can be made with bamboo, willow, or rattan. You can clean up the dirt with a vacuum cleaner and attachments. Wipe with a damp cloth if there is stubborn dirt to be removed. Repaint if necessary. Some wicker furniture is made with some type of compound that resists adverse weather conditions. They clean up easily with soap and water.

Fabric cushions are a popular choice for outdoor furniture. They make hard surfaces on furniture almost as comfortable as our living room furniture. You have to read the label on the particular product you buy. Most of them recommend dish soap and water to clean up the cushions here and there. If you have mildewed or heavily stained cushions, you will have to use a more aggressive treatment. Adding a fabric protector is recommended before using.

Plastic and resin materials are the most durable and the easiest to clean up. Just use some soap and water and scrub away. If you have a problem on your plastic furniture with mildew, use a solution of ¾ cup bleach and 1 tbsp laundry detergent with 1 gallon of water. This also works for cleaning up soiled nylon webbing and mesh.


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