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Archive for the ‘Outdoor Living’ Category
Want to add square footage to your home without obtaining a building permit? You’ll feel like you’ve created an addition when you design a comfortable outdoor living space on your deck, patio or porch. New materials – such as woven wicker and cast aluminum – have lead to pieces that mimic your indoor style with the added benefit of allowing you to enjoy the nature just outside your door.
From sofas to sectionals, chaise lounges and cocktail tables, it’s easy to create an outside area that feels like a natural extension of your home – perfect for entertaining or just relaxing after a long day. Take a look at what we recommend:
1. Go for the cushions. Furnishing with cushions is the foundation of building a room that feels like an indoor space. From chairs to sofas and sectionals, cushioned furniture is designed to be fade-, stain- and mildew-resistant, and you can leave these pieces outside. Group seating pieces together just like you would in your indoor living space.
2. Play with the color palette. Use the tones you have inside to create a natural flow onto your deck or patio. Or go for a bold color that gives the feel of a tropical oasis. Keep in mind that earth tones might blend in a little too well with the outdoors, shrinking the look of your furnishings, and dark colors will hold the heat of the sunlight. Consider using bold, brightly colored accessories for a feeling of fun and whimsy.
3. Think about the “floor.” Consider using an outdoor rug. Made from a polypropylene material, it is made to stand up to the elements. And just like a rug serves in your indoor rooms, it will give the area a pulled-together feel.
4. Take advantage of greenery. Bring your landscaping onto your patio or deck by using hanging baskets, pots and planters. Choose flowers and plants that mimic those in your lawn; the cohesive materials will make your yard feel like an extension of the space.
5. Give the illusion of walls. Create the feeling of a room by installing a pergola, lattice wall or awning. In addition to providing shade and privacy, you can use it to support climbing vines. An umbrella over a dining set will also give the feeling of enclosure.
6. Consider the lighting. Strings of white or colored lights aren’t just for the holidays; they can create a starry effect when used outdoors during a summer night. Also consider landscape and deck lighting or torches that will softly light up the area and enhance the atmosphere. Lighting that points upward accents the architecture of the structure, while a light pointed downward creates a cozy glow.
7. Include the ambiance of a fire. Consider using a firepit. A popular outdoor accessory, you can find freestanding firepits or firepits that are incorporated in table groupings. An evening fire will instantly transform the space into an inviting gathering area as well as warm up the cool nights of Michigan summer.
9. Crank up the music. Outdoor speakers bring the party outside. Relax in style with your favorite tunes. You can install outdoor speakers or use a portable speakers like our fun Cube Speakers.
10. Add water. Complement the design and feel of your outdoor space with the calming trickle of a fountain. Its sound is soothing and will add another sense to your outdoor space. You could also choose a birdbath that will attract feathered friends.
One of the best ways to turn your patio or deck into an inviting and cozy outdoor room is to add a rug. Whether it’s used inside or out, a rug brings color, texture and a sense of cohesion to a group of furnishings. When used outdoors, it also helps to protect the deck wood or patio pavers.
If you haven’t shopped for an outdoor rug recently, prepare to be pleasantly surprised by new designs and materials. In fact, today’s options are as colorful and stylish as the rugs you use inside. So how do you choose the right one?
Size and Shape
Outdoor rugs come in a variety of dimensions. To find the right size, consider the area you want to cover to determine the right size. Measure your patio, deck or porch and pay attention to any architectural details, like pillars or stairs. If you are adding a rug to a dining group, make sure it’s large enough to accommodate the chairs. The rule of thumb is that a rug should be at least two feet wider than all sides of the table. When using a rug with a seating group, make sure it’s large enough to allow at least the front legs of the furniture pieces to be placed on the rug.
Choose the shape by looking at how your furniture is grouped. A round patio table, for example, looks best over a round rug, while seating groups are best defined by a square or rectangular rug that mimics the layout.
Outdoor rugs need to hold up to a variety of weather conditions, and natural and synthetic materials are available that withstand the elements. Natural fibers, such as sisal, jute and seagrass, provide a bit of texture. They can mildew when exposed to too much moisture, so they do require extra care. Natural might be a good choice if your outdoor area is covered or if you are willing to bring the rug inside during the off-season or periodically hang it to dry. Synthetic fibers, such as polypropylene or acrylic, come in a wider range of colors than natural rugs and are extremely durable. They have the added benefit of drying quickly and are often less expensive.
Color and Pattern
Outdoor rugs come in practically every color under the sun, and patterns are available that will enhance your style. When choosing a color, look to the surrounding area for inspiration. Choose a palette from your landscape, or pick shades that evoke the feeling you want to create. For example, bright yellow or orange will create a vibrant setting, while natural colors are more subdued and allow your furnishings to take center stage.
Create a unified feeling by choosing patterns that are similar to your indoor décor. For example, if your indoor style is traditional, you might go with floral patterns. Contemporary homes will look great with geometric or abstract patterns.
When you’re ready to add a rug to your patio or deck, check out all of the options available from Art Van Furniture by clicking here.
Summer is in full swing, and your deck is probably getting a workout. Keep the good times rolling with some maintenance. Here are three things to do this month to keep your deck in great shape:
1. Check the structure. Inspect your deck for cracks or rot, paying extra attention to areas that are close to the ground or sources of water, such as downspouts and planters.
2. If you see areas that look wet check for rot with a flat-end screwdriver. If you can push it into the wood a quarter inch or more, you probably have rot. Small areas can be removed with a chisel and treated with a wood filler and preservative. Larger areas may need to be replaced.
3. Check the railings. If any area feels loose, tighten the connections. You may need to use wider bolts if the wood has weakened and the current hardware isn’t catching into the grain.
There’s nothing as soothing as a backyard fountain. Not only is it beautiful to watch; the trickling sound creates a relaxing environment. Since it’s outside, this beloved accessory can also get its share of dirt and debris. Maintain its beauty by taking a few easy steps:
- Use a small net to remove debris, such as leaves or insects. This will help prevent clogging the pump. You can also attach a nylon stocking to the hose, to make sure debris doesn’t get inside the inner workings.
- Monitor the water level. On hot days, your fountain can experience evaporation. Since the pump can overheat if the water level is too low, make sure it’s full.
- Once a month, unplug the pump and drain the water. Remove buildup with a solution of vinegar and water and a stiff bristled scrub brush. Wipe clean and refill. Using distilled water in your fountain can help reduce mineral buildup.
Either of these nine-foot striped market umbrellas will liven up your patio and protect you from the elements, but only one will save you some money in the process. Both have an easy crank handle and tilt mechanism, and both feature a double wind vent for stability.
One of these market umbrellas is from Ethan Allen and costs $719, and the other is a market umbrella from Art’s Backyard … and it costs just $219. Can you tell which one costs $500 less?
Don’t get burned. Click here to grab the better deal. We’ve got the look (for a lot less!)
Outdoor furniture has evolved from picnic tables and folding chairs to sofas, sectionals and dining sets that beautifully mirror their indoor counterparts. That means you can effortlessly design a patio or deck space that reflects your great taste and sense of style. From casual to traditional and everything in between, here are five outdoor sets that will transform your backyard setting.
Casual. If your style is casual, today’s comfortable wicker sofa and chairs would create a wonderful atmosphere on your patio. This grouping features a cocktail table with a built-in cooler—keeping your cocktails and beverages handy and chilled.
Contemporary. If your home is contemporary you will love this seating collection, which features sleek metal frames and striking grey cushions. The straight lines look current, while the kidney toss pillows feel sophisticated.
Modern. If you love modern style, you’ll love this dining set. Mid-century-inspired lines look sleek, while the dark walnut stain is rich and warm. The table gets a fresh twist with a cement top.
Rustic. With a wonderful rustic feel, this backyard dining set lets you dine in style. The porcelain-top pedestal table has a European vibe, while the chairs add an urban spin.
Traditional. If your style is traditional, set a beautiful table outdoors with a dining set that exudes charm. This grouping was inspired by the glorious French architecture of New Orleans, with beautiful detail work on the chairs and table.
There is something nostalgic and even magical about watching a movie outdoors. Those who grew up in the ‘50s, ‘60s and ‘70s, will likely remember the old drive-in movie theaters with crackly speakers that hung on car windows and preview reels that featured a dancing concession stand snacks.
It’s easy enough to bring back some of that fun by holding your own drive-in movie night … parked right in your backyard.
First, the technology: you’ll need a DVD projector. If you don’t own one, you can often borrow one from your school or workplace. If that’s not possible, contact companies that rent AV equipment for conferences. You’ll also need a screen, but you can fashion one yourself. Simply hang a white sheet from second story windows or project the movie onto a light flat surface such as a garage door.
Next, choose the movie. Consider campy classics, such as Creature from the Black Lagoon, Beach Blanket Bingo or anything starring Elvis. Or select a fun summer movie, such as Stand By Me, NationalLampoon’s Vacation, The Parent Trap, I Know What You Did Last Summer or Jaws.
Now it’s time to make the popcorn. You can set up a popcorn, by filling a big tub with plain popcorn and offering your guests a selection of gourmet toppings, such as dry ranch dressing mix, parmesan cheese and Italian spices, truffle salt, lemon zest and pepper, or mini M & Ms and crushed toffee. Round out the snacks with bottles of Faygo and boxes of Good ‘n Plenty, Raisinettes and Dots.Finally, pull up some comfortable outdoor chairs. Midwest evenings can bring a chill to the air, so be sure to have some blankets for snuggling, too.
Then, it’s time to enjoy. Pass the popcorn, please.
Sitting outside in a comfortable chair is one of the best ways to soak up summer, but there’s no need to spend too much. These two wicker chairs are nearly identical. Both are made of resin wicker and both feature wide arms for resting.
One is the Lakehouse Lounge Chair for Ethan Allen, which sells for $1,029, and the other is the San Jose III Lounge Chair from Art Van Furniture, retailing for $579 – nearly half the cost of the other. PLUS, right now our outdoor furniture is on sale for 40% off.
You’ll relax even more this summer when you know you didn’t pay too much.
A hot trend for Spring 2017 is anything floral. You don’t need a green thumb to bring the season indoors with furniture or accessories that feature gorgeous flowers. Here are three pieces that will instantly perk up your room, putting you beautifully on trend.
The hand-painted Beverly Accent Chest looks like a priceless piece of art. Featuring delightful hummingbirds and flowers, it will add personality and storage to any room in your home.
The sleek lines of the Bliss Accent Chair get a traditional twist with the botanical-inspired floral print. Use one in your living room or master suite, or grab a few to update your dining room table.
Give your patio or deck the feeling of an outdoor room by adding artwork to your exterior wall. The Floral Outdoor Wall Art features a giclee finish, protecting it from the elements and brightening up the landscape year round.
Dads come in all shapes, sizes and personalities. Some Dads love golf, while others prefer spending their afternoon by the pool. Some Dads are climbing the corporate ladder, while others are happy taking a walk with their four-legged friend.
Sunday, June 18th is Father’s Day, and Art Van Furniture wants to help you celebrate your unique Dad. Take a look at these gift ideas that are sure to fit him to a T.
Does your Dad love to soak up the sun? Whether he’s poolside, camping or tailgating on the weekend, this fun 60-quart cooler will keep his favorite beverages cold and ready. Available in a variety of colors, the cool design features a built-in bottle opener and a convenient cap catcher, keeping the area tidy. And the casters let the party roll wherever he goes.
Armchair Quarterback Dad
Complete Dad’s man cave with the beautiful brown Avatar Leather Recliner and Ottoman. Perfect for binge watching his favorite series or taking in the game, the design features plush padding and a sleek exposed metal base. The durable leather upholstery is easy to clean, and you’ll love that it ships for free.
Whether he works from his convenient home office, a comfy cubicle or a corner office with a view, Dad will love the Zline Hayes Oversized Executive Chair. The memory foam contoured seat is super comfortable, and the waterfall edge provides enhanced leg circulation. Wheel casters let Dad move around easily, and it ships for free!
If your dog is truly Dad’s best friend, he’ll appreciate this stylish new Lounge Bed. Designed like a sofa, the bed lets your pup sleep in comfort. The bolstered side and center pillow unzip for easy cleaning, and the black and white buffalo plaid will look great in Dad’s rec room. Available in a variety of sizes, it ships for free.
Every Dad becomes an iron chef when he gets behind the flames of a grill. Help him kick it up a notch with the Himalayan Square Salt Plate. Made from natural salt crystals hand-mined from the Himalayan Mountains, this plate allows Dad to cook, cut and display his grilled masterpiece. The rock can be placed directly on the grill or stovetop, adding flavor to the meal. This great item ships for free.
Music Loving Dad
Headphones and ear buds are nice, but they can get in the way if Dad is trying to nap. With wireless SleepPhones, he doesn’t have to worry about getting tangled up in cords. The hypoallergenic fabric headband has removable speakers that let Dad listen to his favorite tunes or podcasts. Available in a variety of colors, SleepPhones are machine washable and they ship for free.
If you’re really stumped, let Dad pick out what he wants with an Art Van Furniture Gift Card. Available in denominations from $25-$500, he’ll enjoy spending it in any of our 100+ Midwest showrooms.