Patio Dining Sets
Time to get rid of that tired old plastic lawn furniture and pick up a dining set that will do your patio proud
You've spent countless weekends and a considerable chunk of your savings laying the perfect stone patio, landscaping the backyard, and setting up the barbecue, all to make your outdoor space the relaxing oasis you dreamed it could be.
So why aren't you spending more time out there? Maybe because you have no comfortable place to sit down. This season's new outdoor furniture options are stylish, sturdy, durable, and easier than ever to care for.
If your taste runs to the traditional, there's weather-worthy teak and Victorian-inspired woven wicker. If you like your furniture with a little edge, stainless-steel-and-wood combos bring a modern sensibility to the great outdoors.
No matter what you choose, a comfortable, functional dining setup will go a long way toward making your patio or poolside more inviting. So toss the plastic, and step this way. Your table is waiting.
Shown here: Traditional teak, as seen
at left, is an outdoor favorite because it looks good and wears well. An annual coating
of tung oil will preserve the honey-gold hues of teak for years to come.
The "wicker" of this hazelnut-colored set is actually a weatherproof resin, cut in strips that imitate the water hyacinth used for the real thing.
The clean-lined shapes
and a lounge style make it contemporary; teak slab feet give it a solid look that could even work indoors. For more information on the 95-by-43-inch table
and six chairs shown here, visit Restoration Hardware
Keep It Looking Great
Remove dirt with a soft-bristle brush. For PVC-coated polyester, vinyl/ acrylic blends, and solution-dyed acrylics, spot-test for potential discoloration before brushing with 1 cup household bleach and 1 cup mild detergent in 3 gallons of lukewarm water. Use only soap and water on printed acrylics or polyesters to protect colors. Hose off with cold water; let cushions and covers air-dry.
Swivel, rock, and otherwise relax in high-backed armchairs. A hand-applied gold finish and a scratch-resistant marble tabletop bring a touch of affordable luxury to the aluminum pieces. For more information on the 48-inch-diameter table and four chairs shown here, visit Home Depot
Keep It Looking Great
A soft sponge and mild liquid detergent clean almost any metal. Remove rust on wrought iron and steel with a wire brush or by sanding lightly before touching up with rust-inhibiting paint. Oil aluminum swivels and glides at least twice a year. Don't leave furniture out in winter, as moisture can accumulate in tubing and freeze, distorting its shape.
With collapsible chairs that are easy to fold and store, this teak and powder-coated iron bistro set is just the thing for a small patio or pocket-size urban garden. For more information on the 39-inch-diameter table and two chairs shown here, visit Land's End
Capture the spirit of an English garden with a Chippendale-inspired
set. This one looks like it's made from natural bamboo reeds but is actually
sturdy, weather-resistant aluminum. For more information on the octagonal table with tempered-glass top and four chairs shown here, visit Delgreco & Co.
As with most things, the longevity of your outdoor furniture depends on how well it's put together. The teak items here feature mortise-and-tenon joinery and corrosion-resistant solid brass and steel fittings. PVC-coated mesh seats add comfort and a relaxed air.
For more information on the 48-inch-diameter table and four chairs shown here, visit Walpole Woodworkers
Keep It Looking Great
With teak, you can hose down the wood with fresh water, then scrub dirt and stains with a sponge or soft-bristle brush soaked in a solution of soap flakes
(or a mild liquid soap) dissolved in warm water. A thorough cleaning at the beginning and end of the season will keep the wood looking fresh.
The combination of teak, PVC-coated polyester, and stainless steel assures durability, comfort, and a sleek, California-modern look. For more information on the 76-by-38-inch table, two armchairs, and
six side chairs shown here, visit Kingsley Bate
The intricate woven details and curved chair backs come straight out of the 19th century. But 21st-century synthetic wicker will wear better and last longer than the originals ever did.For more information on the glass-topped, 43-inch-diameter table
and four chairs shown here, visit Laneventure
How To Keep It Looking Great
When possible, vacuum the dirt out of woven nooks and crannies. Or you can hose down wicker, real or synthetic, and sponge it clean with a mild detergent mixed with cold water. Rinse well afterward. While synthetic furniture can be left outside year-round, real wicker should be stored inside to protect it from the harshest elements.
A 40-inch-tall, teak-topped table and high faux-wicker stools offer guests a better vantage point from which to appreciate your labor-of-love landscaping. Cushions add comfort and a splash of color. For more information on the 48-
inch-diameter table, two armchairs, and two side chairs with cushions shown here, visit Front Gate