Spring is here and it’s the season to spend more time outdoors. Maybe you’ve noticed your patio furniture has seen better days? Or maybe you have more guests than seating? Art’s Backyard at Art Van Furniture has plenty of outdoor furniture that can make your deck or patio a summer retreat. We’ve Got the Look sat down with Robin Mack, Outdoor Furniture Buer for Art Van Furniture, and asked her five questions that will help you with your next purchase:
1. Are there rules of thumb when it comes to choosing the right type? Robin: The basic rule of thumb when choosing the right type of outdoor furniture is how the individual feels they will most be using their outdoor space – dining, lounging or both? Today, the latest trend is a lifestyle shift to the more cushioned lounging pieces such as sofas, sectionals and lounging chairs. Firepit seating has also become quite popular as people are discovering they are spending a lot more time just “lounging around” with family and friends than they are dining. Other important factors are comfort and easy maintenance.
2. What are the best pieces for families with young children? Robin: Most outdoor furniture is child friendly and it is typically very durable. In the case of dining chairs, which are often available as stationary or as swivel/motion, the stationary chairs are often preferred with small children in mind as the lack of motion keeps the young ones more settled and secure. I would suggest sling over cushion sets – they are easier to clean and dry more quickly.
3. What are the most low-maintenance pieces? Robin: Today’s outdoor furniture is mostly very low maintenance. Aluminum frames (vs. steel) will not rust and typically do not need to be touched up if the surface paint is scratched down to the metal. Faux wicker sets are also very durable and easy to clean.
4. Which pieces tend to last the longest? Robin: Most “better” patio furniture is designed to last for 10 – 15 years, however, outdoor furniture gets “used” 24/7 by the weather and the sun… even when not “in use.” In the long run it pays to shop for quality and understand what you are buying. 5. Are there things you can do to help protect your investment? Robin: Buying a protective cover for your outdoor furniture is a good investment. Clean and wax the furniture once at the beginning of spring to allow it to easily shed dirt and water throughout the season. Check the wear of foot glides and periodically lubricate moving parts. Do not store tubular aluminum furniture upside down as this can result in freeze damage from water/snow entering the drain holes and causing the tube to freeze and split.