Outdoor Furniture

Written by Serena Berger
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Outdoor furniture offers the opportunity to further express yourself with your home accoutrements, but also poses some unique problems to the decorator. Different materials are used in outdoor furniture, as it will be exposed to the elements, but there are also charming additions to the home that can be made. Wicker, metal, and some different woods may become familiar to you as you search for outdoor furniture.

Materials for Outdoor Furniture

Teak, cedar, redwood, and cypress are among the most common woods used in outdoor furniture. Teak is probably the most common and convenient because it has natural oils that withstand moisture, mold, and mildew--an essential if your outdoor furniture will be exposed to rain. In fact, teak has been used to build boats for centuries, for this very reason.

Metal is also used for patio and garden furniture. Typically, the designs for metal furniture are light and airy, with seats and backs having decorative holes drilled in them for ventilation. Metal outdoor furniture can get hot, so be careful--if you prefer this look, place it in the shade. Using light colored metals is also a good idea.

Wicker is the other most popular material for outdoor furniture. This reed can withstand a great deal of wear, and returns to its original shape after having been wet. It is light in appearance, but resilient and lovely.

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