Outdoor Seating Area Design Ideas

Outdoor furniture has evolved beyond cedar picnic benches and folding chairs. Your home’s outdoor seating area, whether on a small patio or sprawling backyard deck, can become a comfortable gathering space when furnished with the right pieces.

Outdoor seating with living room style

La-Z Boy Outdoor seating set-BenjaminThe sitting area of your living room often has a central focus point. A great outdoor living area also needs a central focus. When considering your outdoor seating, begin by determining where or what the focal point of the space should be. Is there a fire pit or outdoor fireplace, or are you arranging furniture on an open deck?

Grouping outdoor seating around a fire pit can create a cozy, intimate arrangement. Combine individual chairs with a couch for a replica arrangement of an indoor living room set. There are lots of outdoor seating groups to choose from, including four-, five- and six-piece sets. Many sets include both seating and a center table or end tables.

The La-Z-Boy Outdoor Benjamin 4-piece set, shown above, has a South Asian style and features two individual chairs, a two-seat couch and a center table. The four pieces can be arranged around your fire pit for comfortable seating while enjoying the fire’s glow. Outdoor seating can also be grouped in a similar design around an outdoor fireplace.

When grouping outdoor seating on a deck, use the set’s largest (or only) table as the focal point. Group the remaining furniture around the table, creating a conversation area.

Create a relaxing reading nook

Oakland-Living-Mississippi-lounge-setIf you enjoy spending lazy summer days outdoors, whether reading a book or simply relaxing with a cold drink while the kids play, a comfy seating area is the perfect solution. Consider a smaller seating set that can be placed almost anywhere — even just a shady area of your yard or off to one side of your deck or patio.

Sears offers a two-piece lounge set from Oakland Living, shown at right, that’s ideal for smaller spaces. The “Mississippi” set is made of weather-resistant resin wicker with a steel frame construction. It seats two and features a matching ottoman.

Complement your landscaping

If your backyard landscaping contains foliage that has bright colors or bold patterns, consider choosing muted, solid colored cushions for your chairs, chaise lounges and couch seating. However, if your landscape colors are primarily greens, you can add a splash of color to the yard with your outdoor seating — choose brightly colored or boldly patterned cushions for visual pop.

Use the Cushion Finder at Sears.com to find the perfect color, pattern, size and style of cushion for your outdoor furniture.

Accessorize the space

Your outdoor seating area can be accented with side tables, area rugs and canopies to offer a shady respite on hot summer days. A porch ceiling fan also adds to the comfort of a seating area, as can a patio heater for those cooler spring or fall evenings.

-by Barb Hopkins


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