Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Historic patio furniture???

Regular readers know that I enjoy finding a used piece at a great price, as much to recycle items as to save money. Also, late 1700's and early 1800's furniture are not today's trends in stores. Creativity and ingenuity are often required to solve a problem of not being able to find the perfect solution.

When it was time to find patio furniture, I started looking at local classifieds, plus websites for patio furniture stores in the area. While I've seen a regular parade of used  pieces of patio furniture in local classifieds, none or it looked like it would be "at home" in our backyard.

"At home" is the key we used when searching for every element of our historic-like home. "Would this style have 'fit' into a late 1700 or 1800's home?"

For a brief time, we studied teak patio furniture. Teak stands the test of time! There are historic hotels with teak furniture in their courtyards. Our study taught us there are different qualities of teak, but the grading systems are specific to each manufacturer. You must be careful when comparing the rating system between two different companies. We also learned that teak does require more care than we probably want to perform. To keep the rich golden look, the furniture needs to be oiled on an annual or semi-annual basis. If not, teak becomes a more rustic looking gray, which is still beautiful. I just like the "new" look more.  Yet, teak also has a more contemporary design style.

When our search became serious, we decided to visit a large outdoor furniture chain. At first, I was looking for the furniture with the longest warranty. I didn't want something that would fall apart in a few, short years. Although we found a set that had a wonderful warranty and was comfortable to sit on, I still didn't feel like it was "perfect." So we left the store to think about it and do a bit more research. It was time to ask if we really liked that set or if we were so tired of the search that we were settling for anything just to get this task behind us.

When I realized it was the latter and that I wouldn't be happy with the furniture style at our home, I realized it was time for RESEARCH!!!

Research takes time, but can often pay off with a better solution. I can't be the only person this happens to, but I find myself overwhelmed in stores that are jammed packed with tons of options. I don't seem to be able to think clearly about what I actually want.

So, in the quiet of my kitchen, I browsed the store's website. While perusing, I noticed a dining table named after the beautiful city of New Orleans, After realizing these pieces would look at home in the charming courtyards in the French Quarter, back to the store we went.

Photo property of Chair King Backyard Store

After getting a better idea of the style we were looking for, we sat on the sofas and dining chairs of 3 different collections. The table that made the most sense for us because of style, size, and warranty was from the St. James collection. But we were not as happy with the sofa that was part of the St. James collection. While it was beautiful, we chose a sofa from the Bordeaux collection for its higher backs.

It was worth the research and time because now we look at the back windows and the patio furniture blends with the historic look in our home.

Photo property of MySouthernHome2014

These chairs would actually be "at home" in a New Orleans courtyard, a Charleston rooftop patio, or at any antebellum home along the Mississippi River. (And YES! We have cushions to throw on when we actually sit outside. We've learned they stay cleaner if stored when not in use. More on cushion storage in a later post.)

Once again I have learned that patience wins the race. Settling for something that doesn't feel "at home" in our space would have resulted in regrets.

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