Outdoor Furniture for the Home

Episode 11: Outdoor Furniture for the Home

Male Voice: Chad Harris (CH) Female Voice: Beth Harris (BH)

CHAD:Lasting Style Meets Everyday life – Episode 11
BETH: Join us on the journey of discovery to our ‘Lasting Style Meets Everyday Life’ podcast.
CHAD:Join our experts, Beth and Chad Harris from the https://www.thegardengates.com/
BETH:As they help you find the perfect home and garden decor for your perfect lifestyle
CHAD:It’s the summer; it’s a great time to be by the pool and what better to do it in? Fermob Bistro Furniture, check it out online at https://www.thegardengates.com/, 24 great colours straight from France. Hi! This is Chad Harris
BETH:And this is Beth Harris
CHAD:And we’re with Lasting Style Meets Everyday Life. Hey, thanks for joining us today and today what are we talking about Beth?
BETH: Today we’re going to move outside and build our outdoor living space
CHAD:That sounds like a good idea outdoor living space, eating, hanging out, chilling by the pool
BETH: All of the above
CHAD:All of the above. Alright, so let’s run through – why don’t we start at the front of the house, what do you think?
BETH: That’s easy, well we’re in the South so when I think of front porches I think about having some sort of maybe indoor or outdoor rugs sorry that you can put on your porch and all-weather rattan set of chairs perhaps with really nice cushions that’s comfortable just to sit back and maybe read a book or chat with a neighbour
CHAD:You know that’s really a great idea. What about also adding a nice – some people might now want that, they might want a nice bench and put a nice cushion on it as well, or maybe a set of chairs or a chair, so those are both great opportunities, on a front porch, something that’s real simple, easily that kind of blends in with the space, don’t you think?
BETH: Yes and don’t leave out the swing! Because people love swings too
CHADThat’s right, that’s right. The swing you could make a nice little – your own little custom pillow collaging
BETH: I was just going to say now-a-days it’s not just a swing, they make bed swings
CHAD:I know, I know definitely I know on our front porch we can never do that but definitely I’ve seen some of those bed swings but I would need an A/C bed swing
BETH: You probably would
CHAD:Yes probably. Alight so now you – then you walk inside your house and as you walk through your house and you go let’s say to your back yard or your back porch or your back deck; you want to make sure that you have – you time one into the other, don’t you think?
BETH: Correct. I think you need to know that you can open those doors and go straight out to a place to invite guests to have dinner or just to sit, if you have a swimming pool, maybe by the pool or just around a really lovely garden
CHAD:You know that makes a lot of sense, you know you talk about having dinner outside, like the Al fresco dining where you almost move your whole dining room outside and it’s great, one of the things you want to make sure is that you have really comfortable chairs and so you talked about the all-weather rattan chairs on the front porch with the cushions, you know if you had four or six of those, you can move a table outside and do seating, with a nice table, really great looking and kind of have a cohesive look.
BETH: That’s right and if you need overflow you can go to the porch and grab those chairs maybe
CHAD:That’s it, that’s it. Overflow, it’s like when – it’s almost like Thanksgiving Day, right?
BETH: Exactly
CHAD:When you can grab all the chairs in the house to get everybody to sit down
BETH: Always too short
CHAD:You’re right, there’s always you have too short. So then you talked about also like poolside or in the lawn or in the garden; you know having a nice lounge whether it’s like a woven lounge or a cushion lounge I know that Fermob makes a wonderful lounge that is great by the pool, it doesn’t get hot and it’s a woven material as well as Sunset West makes a great chase lounge with the nice sunbrella thick, thick, thick cushion which is also a dynamite piece  
BETH: Oh I love the light coloured one what’s it called, driftwood
CHAD:I know, I know that’s what I knew you were going to say driftwood. You know and then – so what ends up happening is that you know you have both of those things and they can actually live in the same space and so you can have a more modern look with a more classic look and those blend together really well. And so let’s move out of the pool area and lets go into like covered cabana, pool house
BETH: Gazebo, that’s right, any of those. I think that’s where it’s really nice because you know you’re going to have protection from the rain which can certainly be an issue in the South not so much in California at the moment. But when you have rain issues you know your concern is the furniture whether it’s the cushion or what have you and the upkeep of that. So when I think about the cabanas or the gazebos I love the fact that you can introduce like all the beautiful cushions and things like that. You don’t necessarily have to cover or be concerned about
CHAD:You know you do bring that up and you know a lot of people when they do outdoor furniture and they even use sunbrella fabrics; what most people don’t remember is you still have care, you still have to take care of them
BETH: Absolutely
CHAD:Because they get dirty, they need to be cleaned and things like that
BETH: I try to keep mines inside or cover then you know. We sell covers on the website so you can protect your stuff. So maybe over that table area under the cabana since you’re going to have a roof overhead you could think about two things. You could go with electric lights but I think what would be really lovely would be to go with a candle light which is something you wouldn’t typically think of doing in the house because it can you know, be a little messy
CHAD:And burn it down
BETH: But yes I’ve seen we have a couple vendors that have where you put the candles in, you just put it on a pulley so you can bring it down and light the candles and pull it back up
CHAD:That sounds like a DIY husband project
BETH: Absolutely, but we women can do it too, don’t you worry
CHAD:Right, I had a feeling you were going to say that. That’s right, so you know, that’s a nice – that really is like super, really really nice feature that you can add. You know you can also add, you know and lot of people are aware of this but you could do tablescapes and the candles that look like cylinders over them or you can even do little floating votives with your qupe, won’t your say?
BETH: And I was going to say don’t forget Compania has those beautiful ones that are concrete and glass that you can have in your colours that sort of work with your…
CHAD:Oh right, right because you can do the twelve different finishes with them
BETH: You can work right in with your tables so all you see are the candles
CHAD:That’s it, that’s it, that is a great idea. I’m glad that you brought that up. So one of the other things that a lot of people start taking or they just don’t know or maybe somebody hasn’t given them any advice on it. Is that so when you’re outside having great – and I know great landscape lighting really as the night sets in and you’re out enjoying yourself sitting on your furniture the landscape lighting really like brings in such a great – I guess like an ambiance of the space, you know? And with the new LED lights it’s great, super-efficient, last forever. That was one of the biggest problems with landscape light shade you changed them all the time, now these bulb last for like ten years. So that’s really nice and that’s a great way to help build that outside and make it look more like an inside, you know. Landscape lighting it like having a table lamp, or a corner lamp or something like that
BETH: Well and too I think when you said the word LED people just cringle and think of those bright white or blue scary lights. But what we have to tell them is that now they have the LED lights that are in a nice warm colour and look just like the landscape – you would not know
CHAD:You would not know, you would never know. So when you start building these rooms outside, you really want to think about each piece
BETH: Each element
CHAD:Yeah, Yeah that’s really the…
BETH: The lighting, you really want to talk about the comfort of the seating that you’re in, maybe some pottery with some, I don’t know, maybe ferns, ficus something on the back area there so soften it up a bit, you don’t want it to become too hard of an area, you want to make it soft
CHAD:Yeah, I’m really – I’m super fascinated with the little olive trees
BETH: Yeah, I really like those too and I think that’s just because it’s not typically something in Louisiana that we see all the time
CHAD:Yeah, yeah definitely I mean I know like South Florida, places like California
BETH: People love tropical
CHAD:But like the little olive trees those are really great; they got pots nice cascading things out of that and so you know when you make these outdoor seating areas that you really want to make sure that you tie in all of the other things with you it. Whether it’s your landscape, the types of planting that you do, the nice trees for screening, to block out neighbours and a lot of people don’t have those same problems that we have here in Louisiana where I think probably our most wonderful neighbours that live on one side of us, what they’re 10.5 feet from one side of our house
BETH: We could probably hang out one window and hand them milk in the morning for their coffee
CHAD:Exactly, exactly. So when you have those kinds of situations and definitely New Orleans is one of those places but you know New Orleans, Chicago…
BETH: New York
CHAD:New York definitely where you need to have great privacy screening so that when you’re outside and you’re sitting and enjoying yourself whether its lounging by the pool like your said, you know those kinds of things you really want to finish this place off and it’s like putting curtains on your windows, you know
BETH: Exactly
CHAD:So, as we talk about different types of furniture, so now let’s break it down into I guess how you buy the furniture because that’s a really important part. You know like one of the very first things that you brought up was the all-weather rattan furniture and as a buyer; most buyers out there on the market today often don’t know I guess like what they’re buying, you know? They just see that one chair is $150 and one chair is $500 and are like “ok the chair that’s $150 looks like the chair that’s $500, what’s the difference?”
BETH: Right, or sometimes they’ll just think they’ve found a great deal and in fact they don’t realise they’re buying – the material that they’re buying is just not going to hold up in the weather
CHAD:Right, it’s inferior. You know the biggest thing that buyers of the all-weather rattan and some people don’t know what we’re talking about when we say all-weather rattan so that is the furniture that looks like wicker but it’s made out of pvc, right?
BETH: Right
CHAD:And so when they’re looking at it, they want to study a couple of things. One the thickness of the weave, if they put their finger on and they press it, does it push in, if it’s springy that’s your first indicator that you basically have straws – you know straw material, in what I mean straw like as in Mc Donald Straw. And then also the other thing that you want to take into consideration is the frame construction. A lot of manufacturers today to cut corners will do things in, make part of them aluminium, part of them in steel, all of it in steel and really the better product is going to be made with 100% aluminium frame wrapped in a thicker pcv weave and what happens from that is a metal frame when it rains rusts and the aluminium frames don’t. So therefore, the frames don’t break, if the frames break , let’s just say the couch now has to be put out on the street corner and taken it away
BETH: It’s kind of like the, you know the inexpensive blouse you absolutely love but you know you’re only going to get one season out of it. You just have to decide how much you love it because it’s going to be gone in a season. So yeah, definitely take your time, do your homework, and call and ask questions. If you’re looking at something grill them, ask them these questions and what it’s made out of so that you know whether or not it’s going to last and  that’s what the warranty is on it
CHAD:You know that’s a really good point and then also one of the other thing is because when you’re talking about all-weather rattan typically all those products have a cushion and so you want to make sure the filling material as well as the fabric is really meant to last, you know and we just spoke about this a little while ago that you really want to still cover, you know even though it’s outdoor fabric you want to protect it from the elements because the better care you take of it the longer the life span is. You there there’s no harm in picking the  cushions up standing them vertically and then putting a cover over the furniture it’s going to both help the actual fabric last longer, it’s not going to allow water to build up and sit because hey guess what, things will get mildew on them, no matter what, you’re going to have to clean them and wash them
BETH: Of course even sunbrella would if it’s wet enough
CHAD:Yeah, if it’s wet enough and definitely in Louisiana
BETH: It is wet
CHAD:It is wet enough, but it is – the one nice thing is you simple with the right soap a little brush and some water, you can clean them pretty quickly so it is a nice factor. So then the other thing that you want to take into consideration is when you’re talking about outdoor furniture you then, like we had spoken about like a chase lounge that isn’t an all-weather rattan, we’ve spoken about the fermob product. So when you’re looking at like patio type loungers for the pool area you want to make sure that they’re aluminium because aluminium you know like I mentioned doesn’t get hot and also today, a lot of pools are salt based
BETH: Yes, and that’s a deadly combination if you’re not using aluminium
CHAD:It is, a salt based pool and especially you know the real problem is, we have this problem in our backyard our polaris is wild he has that little whipping tail no matter like if we turn it down or change it or reduce it to make it shorter that tail just it spits like crazy and it sprays the salt water all over things and so by having the right type of aluminium furniture you’ll end up with longer lasting furniture. If you put mental pieces and you have salt water pool you’ll definitely have rusting mental furniture. And a lot of times that rust will corrode unto your decks whether you have a travertine deck or flagstone deck or even a concrete deck or pavers and it’ll leave the spots. You know one of the types of outdoor chairs that I really like is the low arm chair, that luxembourg low arm chair by fermob because in our particular circumstance we don’t have a lot of space in our backyard, I think what our backyard is like 33” x 60”?
BETH: Yes it’s very small
CHAD:And there’s a pool and a pool house and stairs that come off the house
BETH: That’s right
CHAD:And so we just have what, is it like 3ft on one side, 3ft on one side and we might have 6ft on the other side. So we don’t have a place around the pool to put a lounger but that low arm chair is at an angle that sits back and it’s super comfortable for anyone, especially guys – guys love that chair
BETH: Yeah, I always think it’s really funny when they’re at the store and I say “Oh go try that one” and they sort of look at it like hmmm. They minute they get down on it they’re like “oh wow, it’s comfortable”
CHAD:Exactly, that first experience I had when we were in Luxembourg Garden in Paris, you know and I remember and that’s kind of when we feel in love with that particular brand is when we found it and then from then on it was that’s the only thing that I can think of, it’s one of the nice things that comes in twenty four colours, which is dynamite
BETH: A colour for every person
CHAD:A colour for every person or personality, you might have five personalities
BETH: Yeah I saw an arrangement that’s going out tomorrow and it was quite colourful; white table with four different colour chairs in luxembourg
CHAD:Yes it was, it was and it even has that new colour, the lagoon colour which was just dynamite
BETH: It matches my shutters
CHAD:It matches your shutters, that’s right. So let’s just run through some simple things. You know front porches are great for swings, benches, and like you had mentioned the all-weather rattan chairs with nice cushions. Back patios are great for nice tables you know you can do the big long nice stone tables; you can actually even bring some of your indoor furniture out for little events. Make sure you think about your overhead lighting. You know talked about the chandeliers using the candles in them. Remember husbands you need a little DIY project …
BETH: Your tablescapes
CHAD:Pull a little rope and some pulleys and pull it up and down, personally me I would do everything not to have a little DIY project. On a side note; how many inches above the table does the chandelier need to be? Well it really doesn’t matter what the right measurement is supposed to be. But Beth I think, what you said it’s like 30” or 31”
BETH: Maybe 30”
CHAD:Yeah it depends, but if you have a tall family all your sons and husband will hit their heads on that chandelier. One of the other things we did talk about was; she’s over here parading around because she was right
BETH: I just looked it up online 30” to 34” woot! Woot!
CHAD:Yeah, exactly, exactly. We need to move the one above our head here four inches so that would help us but you know we also talked about the actual other elements that you can incorporate into a yard which would be landscape lighting, we touched on the LED lights and there’s a bunch of new LED lights out on the market that are really great, as well as incorporating tablescapes of candles and I know that Compania now makes those outdoor candle holders with the glass cylinders, which are really nice. We also talked about doing pots with plants and softening the space so you’re not just dumping some furniture outside and it just looks like you dumped furniture outside you actually try to make it look like a home outside. So maybe building your interior concept
BETH: And noise reduction too
CHAD:Yeah it does help and then carrying that same thing outside. So when your guests go from the front of your house, you know as they enter your house, they come in and then they go out back that there’s one consistent look and I think those are great ways to turn a whole living space, you where is all…
BETH: Inside out
CHAD:Inside and out
BETH: Today’s podcast is brought to you by http://www.audible.com/. Get a free audio book download and 30-day free trial at http://www.audibletrial.com/style. Over 150,000 titles to choose from for your iPhone, android, kindle or mp3 player. Again that’s http://www.audibletrial.com/style
CHAD:Alirght, so now after all this Beth, I think everybody’s ready to go outside
BETH: And enjoy that outdoor living space you’ve just created
CHAD:That’s it, that’s it. Hey thanks again for joining us today. I’m Chad Harris
BETH: And I’m Beth Harris
CHAD:And we’re from “Lasting Style Meets Everyday Life” you can find us seven days a week at 2918 Metairie Road. Always visit us http://www.athomewithbethandchad.com/ our blog, as well as you can shop with us online at https://www.thegardengates.com  Thanks again, we’ll see you soon!

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