Air Chair in cove pink rattan

From Outback Chair Co., the Air Chair in cove pink rattan is a hammock chair made with an epoxy-coated aluminum wrapped frame.

When summer arrives, our decks, patios, porches and backyards become vacation destinations.

We create comfortable gathering spots with cozy (and practical) outdoor furniture, market umbrellas, decorative outdoor rugs, even outdoor lamps, heaters and firepits, all in the name of escape.

From Mission and Mid-Century Modern to French Provençal, you’ll find indoor furniture styling moving outdoors.

With only modest improvements in the economy, staying home and entertaining at home continue to be important trends influencing outdoor furniture designs. As homeowners expand their everyday living space to the out-of-doors, it makes sense that they would want to also extend their favorite indoor furniture styling to porches and patios, says Jackie Hirschhaut, vice president of public relations for the American Home Furnishings Alliance.

Among the best illustrations of this trend is Century Furniture’s Maison Jardin collection by designer Richard Frinier. The classically styled frame sets off naturally distressed and curved teak wood slats, while vintage colors and French motif fabrics are reminiscent of the French countryside.

Part of this move to extend indoor styling to the out-of-doors includes the growing category of fully upholstered outdoor furniture. Laneventure and Homecrest have perfected the look.

The Homecrest collection is called “Bungalow” and consists of removable slipcovers over a seat cushion of durable foam that is wrapped with polyester fiber that is then encased with a water resistant ticking.

But it is Homecrest’s polyurethane-topped tables that excites eastern Iowans. “This is a big change from glass table tops. The polyurethane tops are more stylish and have the look of stone. They’re never going to crack, blister, warp or rot,” says T.J. McGowan of Waterloo’s McGowan’s Furniture.

North Cape’s deep-seated “Cabo” collection is also creating a stir with its sleek styling and woven wicker look that is actually made from recycled plastic over an aluminum frame. “People like the look and the durability of it,” McGowan says. Cushions are bright and colorful, too.

Laneventure has expanded its fully upholstered outdoor furniture to five collections, with the Harrison sectional and Katherine dining arm chair among the newest.

Summer Classics outdoor furnishings feature cushions that dry rapidly, even after a driving rain, and Sunbrella fabrics that don’t fade and offer easy care.

“People are turning their patios and decks into outdoor rooms, even to the extent that they may have kitchens, fireplaces and TVs. Our season is so short that we want to take advantage of the outdoors in any way we can. If the consumer invests in products like Summer Classics, it will last for years,” says Nancy Meinders of Home Interiors in Cedar Falls.

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