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Outdoor Living plays a vital role in how our homes function, and therefore deserves to be treated stylistically as connected to the overall architectural design and interior decor.
When selecting outdoor furniture, consider that an ultra modern home needs sleek contemporary designs to suit its style, incorporating materials such as stainless steel and synthetic weaves, and shapes that are hard-edged or organic. As indoor and outdoor overlap, more and more contemporary design, the outdoors enters our homes through large glass panels and green oases. Comfortable furniture moves outside, giving its design new meaning. Scale is also a major factor, as lifestyle trends see more and more people living in apartments with balconies and townhouses with courtyard gardens.
Traditional homes are complemented by outdoor furniture in classic styles, made from wrought iron, teak, stone, or wicker, where French and Mediterranean themes require woven rattan and strap-iron pieces to suit the rustic nature of al fresco entertaining. A coastal decor invariably suits natural or synthetic wickers and the soft grey of weathered teak. Iron is impractical if you live by the sea, as it will rust.
Outdoor dining tables give your garden a sense of purpose, by inviting people outside to enjoy the space. Essentially, a dining terrace or nook becomes an extension of your home's rooms. Equally, garden benches contribute character and encourage individuals to stop and enjoy aspects of the garden. They are available in designs to suit all styles of homes. So too, are armchairs, sofas, ottomans, and sunloungers important furniture items, as they promote socializing and enjoyment of the outdoor area.
Garden ornamentation is a powerful accessorizing tool. Carefully positioned objects become the garden's focus and unify he overall design. Whether traditional or contemporary, it might be the architectural form of an obelisk, a classic statue or urn on a pedestal, a wall frieze, fibreglass or metal sculpture, water feature, wrought iron wall grille or ancient looking oil pot. Choosing an ornamental object is as much an expression of someone's taste as the interior decoration of the house. Appropriateness of the object depends primarily on the scale of the object in relation to that of its setting.
Lighting an outdoor area with lamps, lanterns, candelabra and wall sconces appropriate to your style choice will add decorative appeal as well as providing a warm glow to the surfaces around them.