Entertain in style and transform the look of your patio with beautiful new outdoor furniture. Here’s what to consider when making a purchase.
The look: A seamless flow between indoor and outdoor spaces.
The focus: Furniture design and functionality inspired by indoor pieces.
The inspiration: According to Sue McCoubrey from Block & Chisel, “Modern connected patios have become an extension of our homes. No matter the size, it’s where we choose to spend lazy afternoons and entertain guests. It’s all about embracing the South African lifestyle.” Thanks to this savvy alfresco living approach, patio furniture has taken on a fresh, sophisticated aesthetic.
Trend alert: “This summer we expect to see a continued focus on pieces that look as if they were crafted for indoor use. Moving away from the synthetic wicker styles of recent years, there’s a growing appreciation for furniture that’s constructed from natural mixed materials,” says Kirstyn Verbaan of First Dutch Brands. Docklands corner sofa set, available from www.firstdutchbrands.co.za.
Designer savvy: No patio is summer-ready without the right mix of furniture. “Look for pieces that really speak to you – something that you can imagine spending summer afternoons chilling out on is usually a good point of departure,” says Verbaan.
“Start with the big pieces that you’ll be using, as these will set the overall tone for your patio. By choosing sofas, tables or chairs that tick all these boxes, you’re already on a winning path,” she says. Nassau carver chairs and Eve square table, available from www.firstdutchbrands.co.za.
Alon Sachs, co-founder of Mobelli Furniture + Living, agrees. “The best way to create a stylish outdoor space is with a selection of aesthetically appealing, yet practical, pieces.” Switch multifunctional two-seater sofa, Baso side table, available from www.mobelli.co.za.
Sachs adds that every patio needs an elegant and functional sofa as anchor piece, where you can soak up the sun on balmy summer days. Rivoli three-seater sofa, available from www.mobelli.co.za.
• Choose practical, inviting pieces that are durable and easy to clean.
• Always do your research before investing in a piece of furniture. Look at manufacturer guarantees, pre- and post-sales service, customer reviews, and ask as many questions as possible.
The look: Nature-inspired contrast.
The focus: Materials and finishes.
The inspiration: “One non-aesthetic trend that we are super-excited about is that the eco-conscious consumer is actively seeking out sustainably and responsibly sourced products,” says Verbaan.
The key to this look is casual, earthy materials with a strong organic underpinning. Think wooden or rope frames with comfy cushions upholstered in neutral tones. “Wherever possible, opt for accents and décor that are crafted from natural elements,” says Verbaan. Reims lounge set, available from www.firstdutchbrands.co.za.
Trend alert: According to Verbaan, “Furniture that introduces a sense of movement and airy visual appeal, such as slats, rope weave or geometric patterns, are commanding a lot of attention.” Ipanema two-seat coffee set, available from www.firstdutchbrands.co.za.
Low-slung seating is having a moment in the spotlight, too. “Casual and modern, these sets are perfect for hosting or just hanging out on a balmy evening,” says Verbaan. Sesto occasional armchair, available from www.firstdutchbrands.co.za.
• “Location and setting are important, as this will determine which materials will best suit your space from a maintenance requirement point of view,” advises Verbaan.
The look: A palette of minimalist and understated neutrals enlivened with pops of bold colour.
The focus: Soft furnishings and accessories.
The inspiration: Verbaan believes that a carefully curated ensemble of attention-grabbing outdoor accessories is just the thing to make a true style statement. “Patio rugs, scatter cushions and throws are ideal for adding pops of statement colour to a neutral setting,” she notes.
According to Sachs, “No outdoor living area is complete without the right accessories. They add a touch of finesse and simply enhance the area with very little effort,” he notes. Black and white Hexagonal rug, available from www.mobelli.co.za.
Trend alert: “In terms of soft furnishings, bold hues are making their way into interiors at the moment. We expect outdoor spaces to follow suit. Think rich mustards, deep royal blues and burnt terracotta featured across outdoor textiles such as scatter cushions, throws and rugs,” says Verbaan.
“Colour-wise, we love the neutral tones that are coming through – lots of greys, off-whites and ice-cream pastels,” says Verbaan. Portals two-seater sofa and Ove tea trolley, available from www.firstdutchbrands.co.za.
Branch out and create your own slice of paradise with botanical greenery. Mix and match statement planters to offset your menagerie of leafy plants. Find the look at www.blockandchisel.co.za.
• Make sure the patio furniture you choose matches your lifestyle. Think about kids and pets when selecting fabric colours, and really consider how you plan to use the space.
• Always do your research before investing in a piece of furniture. Look at manufacturer guarantees, pre- and post-sales service, customer reviews, and ask questions.