Summer is never as long as we’d like around here, which is why we dine outdoors every chance we get during the warm weather months. Having the right dining set, and one that will last for years to come, can make those outdoor meals even more enjoyable.
First, decide how many people you will regularly need to sit. If you are a family of four, a smaller set that seats all of you is probably enough, but if you’re the regular host of your sailing club’s monthly dinners, you will probably be looking for a table that can fit a few more people around it. It’s also good to consider the type of people who will be using your patio dining set. People with young children tend to shop for something durable, while people who host mostly adults tend to lean toward more sophisticated styles.
Next, decide where the dining area will be located. Typically on a deck or patio, the dining set should be relatively close to the grill and the home for easy access to food and the forgotten item in the fridge. This will also help you decide the material that’s best for your set. For example, our Resin Wicker Dining Furniture provides the look of natural wicker but is much more durable. Our Teak Dining Furniture is designed for outside use for many years while still retaining its structure and beauty and our Aluminum Frame Dining Furniture has the strength to withstand full sun and rain for many summer seasons.
At Island Lifestyles, we also offer the Eco Furniture Collection of dining, counter and bar sets, made of environmentally friendly poly lumber. Designed to look like real wood, this highly durable material is great for seaside cottages. These sets have a smooth comfortable feel and fade resistant color that’s UV stabilized. It also resists cracking, bacteria growth and is unaffected by salt spray.
While look and durability are important, there are other factors that may weigh in on your decisions, such as how easy it is to move the furniture into storage during winter months. For those with a closed porch, this may not matter, but for most homeowners, finding a place to store a patio table and chairs during the winter can be tough. If the set you buy is hard to dismantle or extremely heavy, it could be a burden on you, as well as lead to potential damage to the set. If storage is limited, consider furniture that can be left outside in the winter months.
Accessories, like an outdoor umbrella, can also add style and comfort to your outdoor dining area. Decide whether an umbrella set within the table, or one that is located nearby, is the best. Many patio dining sets today offer this option.
Finally, think about how the set will fit into the overall style of your home. If you’ve spent years creating a vintage garden look in your backyard, bright colors and modern styles may feel out of place. Because patio dining areas are often located close to your home, think about how to create a natural flow from inside the home to the outdoor dining area.
We have been helping homeowners create their dream outdoor dining areas for more than 27 years. We are happy to help you select the outdoor patio dining set that’s right for you.