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The Latest Outdoor Furniture Trends for Homeowners in 2014

Perhaps one of the most surprising side effects to come out of the Great Recession is the trend towards outdoor living spaces. Many homeowners unable to sell their properties and upgrade as planned have found themselves looking for ways to increase their limited square footage and make the most of their homes until they are able to trade up to a larger property. And they have done this in some cases by outfitting their outdoor spaces to create the comfortable and inviting “rooms” that they can use to relax with the family or entertain guests. As a result, the way people look at outdoor furniture has changed dramatically over the last few years. And if you’re looking to jump on the bandwagon and make your outdoor spaces into usable square footage, here are a few trends for outdoor furniture that could help you to get started.

Most people consider outdoor furniture to embody utility and durability. Comfort tends to take third place in this equation. And while it is, of course, important that your outdoor furnishings are designed to stand up to the elements and to serve the very basic purpose of providing seating and tabletop surfaces, the biggest trend for 2014 revolves around pieces that meet all three needs, offering more of what you get with indoor furniture paired with what you expect from outdoor items. Lounge furniture has become very popular, for example, and you’re likely to find a lot more in the way of deep seating options, much like couches and chairs you might select for your living room. It’s not inconceivable that you and your family could watch TV or sit around a fire outdoors these days, what with the concept of outdoor rooms becoming a lot more accepted. Covered patios can definitely support electronics, and there are so many options for centralized and even portable (i.e. rolling) fire pits and fire places that you really can make outdoor living and entertaining into an indoor experience.

Another trend that seems to be taking hold is mix and match furniture. You no longer have to purchase matching sets, and in fact, a truly fashionable outdoor space will likely feature a somewhat eclectic mix of pieces, especially where textiles are concerned. While it’s not a bad idea to get furniture groupings that go together (such as a couch and chairs for a lounge area or a table and chairs for a dining area), you can definitely have some fun mixing up colors, patterns, and textures along the way. Bold prints and color choices have definitely taken hold, and if you want your outdoor furniture to embody your chic sense of style, the trend de rigueur involves pairing bright hues with neutrals, especially in the form or geometric or globally inspired prints.

Of course, outdoor kitchens remain popular, as well, and you can even use the mix and match mentality here by pairing, say, metal chairs with wooden or stone tables and using cushions in a variety of complementary (but not matching) textiles. Whether you’re shopping for patio furniture in greater Boston or Los Angeles, you still need to make sure that the items you select are durable enough to withstand the climate and that they fit your space, both in terms of size and style. But there are so many options for furnishing that make your outdoor spaces look more like your indoor ones that 2014 is sure to be a year when interior and exterior design overlap.

 
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