How to Choose Garden Furniture
With the right garden and patio furniture, you can turn your outdoor spaces into an extension of your home - an area for relaxing, wining, dining and summer entertaining. But to get the most out of your garden you need outdoor furniture designed to fit your needs and the space you have available.
Key points to consider
At Scotts of Stow we've spent many years sourcing and developing garden and patio furniture collections designed to harmonise with your surroundings, from decorative cottage garden pieces to sleek, streamlined sets to complement contemporary settings.
Before buying your garden or patio furniture you'll need to consider a few things:
- How will you use it? For relaxing, dining, entertaining?
- How many people will you be catering for?
- How much do you wish to spend? Solid wood and metal garden furniture can be expensive, aluminium sets generally cost less.
- How much space do you have? Stackable or folding garden furniture can be stored in a shed or garage. Small two-person bistro sets will fit on a balcony or patio.
- What style do you want? Your garden furniture should blend in with your style/age of home and its surroundings.
The table below can help you choose the most suitable material for your garden
|Solid wood||Long-lasting||Heavy||Natural||Teak oil or stain||Treat annually|
|Aluminium||Long-lasting||Lightweight||Modern||Won't mould/rust||Wipe clean|
|Wrought iron||Long-lasting||Heavy||Traditional||Anti-rust paints||Paint bi-annually|
|Real rattan||Limited||Lightweight||Traditional||None||Vacuum to remove dirt|
|Faux rattan||Long-lasting||Lightweight||Traditional or modern||None||Hand wash or pressure hose|
|Painted steel or other metal||Limited||Midweight||Traditional or modern||Anti-rust paints||Paint bi-annually|
|Polypropylene||Long-lasting||Lightweight||Modern||None||Hand wash or pressure hose|
Choose a Furniture Set that Suits the Style and Size of Your Garden
Great-looking garden furniture can instantly update your outdoor areas and make them more inviting. We have a wide range of chairs, tables, benches and loungers to suit your lifestyle. From our solid, sturdy, hardwood collection to our ultra-low maintenance, all-weather faux wicker furniture. For patios and balconies we have compact, foldaway bistro table and chair sets and for ultimate relaxing and sun bathing, our famous, French-made LaFuma luxury loungers are infinitely adjustable and lightweight allowing you to make the most of the sun. Move them to the best position in your garden, tilt for comfort as desired and simply relax.
Wooden Garden Furniture
A wooden garden furniture set is sturdy and robust with teak and acacia hardwoods being the most popular. With regular maintenance, wooden furniture will retain its natural beauty for many years. Teak, for instance, contains resinous oil that prevents water penetration. If left untreated, wood can, over time, take on a pleasing silver patina. You may prefer this natural 'weathered' look but to retain its original colour it is important to treat it annually. Use either teak oil that gives a natural finish or a stain that results in a richer, deeper tone. Both offer long-lasting protection against the elements.
Metal Garden Furniture
Typically, metal garden furniture is made from cast iron, painted or powder-coated steel or aluminium. By its nature, iron is very heavy making it difficult to move, but it is an excellent choice for traditionally styled gardens. Of course, iron is prone to rust, especially in the damp British climate, so it is advisable to treat it at least bi-annually with an anti-rust solution or paint. Painted steel furniture is sturdy, looks attractive and comes in a range of fashionable or vintage finishes. Like iron, however, it is prone to rust and so must be treated accordingly. A cast-iron bistro set is perfect for patios and balconies.
Aluminium metal garden furniture has become increasingly popular in recent years and for good reason. It is lightweight and easy to move, will not rust or corrode, making it easy to maintain and is invariably foldable or stackable and easy to store away. When handling, though, be sure to take care because aluminium can be easily bent or dented.
Rattan Garden Furniture
Nothing beats the natural good looks of rattan garden furniture. It is lightweight and easy to move but can be more prone to damage from the elements causing it to split, so it must always be stored under cover so isn't the first choice for a lot of gardens.
Faux Rattan Garden Furniture
Faux wicker furniture combines the appeal of the real thing with modern-day durability. Our faux rattan collections are woven of high-density polyethylene wicker making them hard-wearing and weatherproof. Withstanding sun, rain and snow you can leave them out all year round and they'll come to no harm. Simply wash down regularly or use the pressure wash attachment on your hose for a thorough clean at the end of the season.
Polypropylene Garden Furniture
Light years ahead of the ugly white plastic chairs we've all sat on in the past, our latest Toscana collection from Italian manufacturer Nardi, offers a range of rigid polypropylene furniture originally designed for commercial resort use around swimming pools and outdoor bars and restaurants. All items are colourfast, ultraviolet and weather resistant. Offered in a handsome dark green colour, the chairs have comfortable woven backs while the tables are decorated with mosaic patterns bonded into the resin during manufacture to ensure long-lasting looks and performance.
- Easy to clean
- 6-seater set
- Mosaic patterned
Add Colour and Comfort with Garden Furniture Cushions and Seat Pads
- Furniture accessories
- Seat pads
Although our garden furniture is designed to feel comfortable in its own right, we also offer a wide range of furniture accessories including seat pads and scatter cushions to add extra comfort and a splash of colour. Available in a rainbow of solid colours, florals and stripes, you can mix and match our garden furniture cushions to create just the look you want.
Be Prepared for the Unpredictable British Weather
To keep you and your guests comfortable during those really hot days, be sure to invest in a parasol or two. A crank-assisted parasol erects effortlessly in an instant to offer a two-metre canopy of welcome shade and sun protection. And with a tilting mechanism, you can easily adjust it to shield the sun without having to struggle moving it around with the heavy base.
For complete cover, meanwhile, a pop-up gazebo is large enough to cover a table and chairs, making any outdoor dining occasion or garden party more comfortable with protection from the sun, rain and sudden breezes.
How to Protect Your Garden Furniture
While some of our garden furniture, such as our faux rattan collection, can be safely left to the mercies of the capricious British weather, wooden and real rattan pieces need protection from the elements. If your garden furniture is too heavy to move or won't fit into your shed or garage, we offer a range of weather-resistant PVC-backed polyester furniture covers. They'll prevent your chairs, tables and benches from sun, rain and wind damage throughout the year, as well as preventing soiling from birds, dirt and dust. Your seat pads and cushions can be stored safe and dry in our jumbo garden storage box