Arrange Your Patio for Conversation
The right patio furniture arrangement creates an outdoor setting to help your guests and family feel welcome, whether it’s for quiet conversation or a warm and friendly gathering. Rearranging your patio seating into natural social groupings is easy. When it’s time to entertain, you only need to add a few festive touches to make it a full-on party.
How to arrange your patio for conversation
The key to a patio that encourages relaxed conversation is providing a focal point. It gives people something to talk about and draws them into natural groups.
A fire pit is an ideal focal point. Conversation and comfort come naturally around a fire. It also extends the time you can use your patio, giving warmth and light when the days grow shorter. Choose from models that use wood or propane, in styles from cozy to dramatic.
Or try a fountain. Water is cooling and soothing as a focal point, offering white noise to muffle intrusive sound. And fountains with trickling water create a background murmur, so there’s never a stark silence when no one is talking.
Specimen plants can be focal points, too. A climbing rose, a small Japanese maple, or a succulent collection in a charming pot can all bring a patio to life. Hidden lighting emphasizes the sculptural qualities of plants and lets you use your patio after nightfall.
Arrange seats so people face one another, close enough to talk quietly. Place furniture around a low table as you would in a family room, or orient your guests so they sit together enjoying the fire’s warmth or the fountain’s murmur. Choose durable outdoor furniture such as this wicker-look conversation set from La-Z-Boy and add storage for the accessories that complete your personal touch.
Tips for outdoor entertaining
A barbeque is a classic way to entertain. Barbeque grills come in many sizes, from banquet to roll-away patio size. Choose one in scale with your patio, so there’s plenty of room for socializing. Or site your barbeque outside the patio’s boundary, to promote more mingling and conversation.
Small tables for drinks and food, or larger communal tables set up in advance, prompt people to interact as they form groups. Stackable tables and chairs are easy to stow away when you’re not entertaining – if it’s just you and your family outdoors, you won’t feel like you’re sitting in an empty restaurant! For a final atmospheric touch, hang party lights or place candles in hurricane lamps. Soft background music goes a long way in setting mood.
Your patio is a sanctuary for sitting and talking. It combines a sense of shelter with the presence of nature. Thoughtful patio furniture arrangement makes it easy for everyone to feel at home.