Take it outside: 8 hot trends in outdoor home furnishing

outdoor furniture

Take it outside: 8 hot trends in outdoor home furnishing

et out and stay out. Southern California’s typically glorious weather inspires a passion for luxurious outdoor living spaces — and there’s no shortage of new fabrics and furnishings to make that a reality.

“The customer is starting to think of their outdoor space like another room,” said Ann Marie Vering, Los Angeles-based designer of the Milano Collection for Restoration Hardware. “They are spending more of their budget outside, they’re entertaining and relaxing more outside, and it’s driving [furniture] companies and manufacturers to put outdoor lines in their collections.”

Vering said furnishings that were once an afterthought are taking center stage. “It’s no longer about clunky, cheap furniture to throw on the patio. … Customers want high design for their outdoor pieces.”

Here’s a look at eight ways the trend is playing out at stores across the country as summer 2017 gets underway:

Fabric first

The increased selection of colors, textures, prints and patterns for weather-resistant outdoor fabrics from companies such as Sunbrella is “off the charts,” said Doug Sanicola, owner of Outdoor Elegance in La Verne and chairman of the International Casual Furnishings Assn. “The fabrics have the look and feel of what you would use inside,” said Sanicola, “and they even make a synthetic down fill now and you can’t tell the difference.”

Pillow talk

In the past, the spongy Dacron filler inside traditional patio cushions and pillows wouldn’t allow for the cushy look, or the “karate chop” fluffing techniques reserved for indoor pillows. “With the new down-filled and high-density cushions you can put them on your sofas and chairs and they look really cool. It is about bringing the indoors out,” Sanicola said.

Vering agrees. “I think the biggest thing right now is seeing a lot of the oversized cushions, the same kind that showed up in interiors five or six years ago.”

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