Trends in outdoor living areas

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PatioFirePitOutdoor living spaces are hot. More and more people want to move their casual living spaces outdoors.

What this means is you are seeing bigger patios, fire pits, water features and durable outdoor furniture. This allows people to enjoy their landscaping, expand their home’s usable space and feel like they are getting away from it all without having to leave home.

Patio furniture is reflecting this trend. Traditional patio furniture includes a table with chairs and maybe an umbrella. You are now increasingly seeing a loveseat and several chairs or a sectional surrounding a coffee table or fire pit.

Water features of all kinds are popular – everything from patio fountains to bubbling rocks to waterfalls and ponds. Have you ever just sat and listened to a water feature. It gives you the feeling you are next to a babbling brook at a favorite vacation destination.

You’ll see a trend this summer toward embellishing your outdoor spaces much the same was as you do your indoor spaces. This is accomplished by using indoor/outdoor area rugs, throw pillows and cushions made with weather-suitable fabric. All-weather artwork and accessories like lanterns, candleholders and sculptures also are popular.

Battery-operated candles and umbrella lights will add ambient light after the sun sets and are of less fire risk than traditional candles, firepots or tiki torches.

Indoor/outdoor area rugs add color, texture and pattern to a deck or patio. Remember, though, if they get wet they must be hung out to dry to prevent mold growth underneath them. Outdoor pillows that continually get wet and dried should be made from quick-drying anti-microbial fabric.

The best options for outdoor furniture and accessories are those that mix style with durability to stay in good condition during weather extremes. The options include heavy-duty plastic furniture like Adirondack chairs and tables, all-weather wicker furniture or a number of styles of loungers.

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