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Everything You Need To Know About Gazebos!

Everything You Need To Know About Gazebos!

Gazebo

A gazebo is a perfect addition and enhancement for any garden or yard. Not only does it provide an attractive feature and focal point to please the eye, but it increases the pleasure you derive from your outdoor space in an almost infinite number of ways. It enables you to expand your home’s living space, and greatly extend your enjoyment of outdoor living to three, or even four, seasons of the year.

A gazebo is a free-standing structure with a roof and open sides. Gazebos can be square, rectangular or round, but the most popular shape is a six-sided or eight-sided formation.

They can consist simply of a roof supported by posts, or can incorporate a low wall, two or three feet high, which makes it possible to add screens, doors and windows, and attach benches to the wall for permanent seating. However, gazebos can also be temporary structures, known as pop-up gazebos, which can be erected when and where you need them.

Gazebo

 

What Can I Do with a Gazebo?

The uses for an outdoor gazebo are so many and varied that they are limited only by your imagination. Its most common use is simply as a place of rest and relaxation, and as a shaded seating area.

Depending on size, you can put in garden furniture, such as recliners, tables and chairs, or even a garden bench or two, to maximize the family’s enjoyment of summer. This way you can also have an extra room to increase your living space.

Gazebo

A garden gazebo is ideal for social events too — it’s a perfect place to host a barbecue, or an outdoor party. A very popular use nowadays is as a venue for a garden wedding, for either the ceremony or the reception — for the ceremony, it’s an effective way to focus all eyes on the bride and groom.

If your gazebo is by the pool, it makes a delightful poolside retreat, where you can sip a glass of chilled lemonade after your dip in the water. Some people even use their outdoor gazebo as a fitness room, or as a place of prayer and meditation.

One increasingly popular use is as a hot tub gazebo, or a spa enclosure, providing privacy as well as protection from the elements. For gardeners, the gazebo is a good place to do sedentary jobs like potting plants, to avoid having to work in full sunshine. In fact, the possibilities are virtually unlimited.

Gazebo

What Are Gazebos Made Of?

Gazebos can be made of a wide variety of materials such as metal, wood, stone, or even of reinforced concrete. Nowadays an increasing number of gazebos are also being made from vinyl.

Metal Gazebos

A metal gazebo is usually constructed of aluminum, wrought iron or steel, aluminum being the cheapest, and wrought iron the most expensive. Steel gazebos are particularly durable and permanent, while aluminum is lightweight and strong.

However, people love wrought iron gazebos most of all, because they are so beautiful, and add an old-world elegance and charm to any garden setting. Whatever it is made of, the great thing about a metal gazebo is that it requires hardly any maintenance, and you never need to worry about it rotting, warping or being eaten by ants.

Gazebo

 

Wooden Gazebos

Wood is always a fantastic natural looking option when it comes to outdoor furniture and the same goes for its use with gazebos as well.  Unfortunately, while there are many gorgeous types of wood, not all can be used to build a gazebo.  Here are your top three wood options which are guaranteed to impress:

Pressure Treated Lumber

Pressure treated lumber is the most inexpensive option of the three.  It is normally either Fir or Pine which has been chemically treated.  This treatment allows the wood to be used outdoors without any problems.  It is good looking and strong.  Both Pine and Fir can range from slightly green in color to brown, it’s up to your preference.

As they age, they will in fact both slowly change to a handsome gray color.  A trick many wooden gazebo makers employ is to use pressure treated lumber in many of the parts which are hidden from view and switch to either Cedar or Redwood for the ones in plain sight, which can help save a few bucks as pressure treated lumber is cheaper than both of them.  Regardless of whether you use it to construct your entire gazebo or only part, it is a good, cheap, and reliable option.

Gazebo

Cedar

Cedar is a very popular wood for building gazebos and for many good reasons.  Builders love it because it is lightweight and relatively soft. This means it’s easy to work with.  It is also very rustic looking and has a very pleasant aroma for which it is famous.  The most important feature however is its natural resistance to rot and decay, making it perfect for use outdoors.

It is available in a few different varieties such as Eastern and Western Red Cedar, with the Western type being the more popular as it is much more resistant to decay than the Eastern variety. The wood of all cedar is classified as either heartwood or sapwood. Heartwood which comes from the center of the tree is darker in color and higher in quality along with sapwood which comes from the outer area and is lighter in color.

Gazebo

 

Redwood

Redwood is considered by many to be the best choice of wood for all outdoor projects. It is a strong wood making it very suitable for supporting your outdoor wooden gazebo.  This wood is very attractive and luckily also very easy to work with.  Redwood is particularly known for its natural rot-resistance and insect-resistance too.

The only drawback is that it is more expensive than other options, however when beauty and quality is concerned you really do get what you pay for.  Like with Cedar, all Redwood lumber is also classified as either heartwood or sapwood.

Gazebo

The trick when building a wooden gazebo from Redwood is that you can only use heartwood for areas which will be coming into contact with the ground.  And while heartwood is more expensive, you can still use sapwood for the other parts of your gazebo without any worry.

The special charm a wooden gazebo can bring to your outdoor space is like no other.  The natural feel, look, and smell of real wood can make your gazebo a special place to relax and will no doubt enhance the beauty of your yard or garden while fitting in perfectly with the natural surroundings.  Consider these 3 types of wood for your project and no matter which one you choose you can’t go wrong!

***If you decide on either Cedar or Redwood be sure to use only aluminum, stainless steel or galvanized steel hardware. If you do not, the wood may develop black stains or streaks from contact with other hardware materials notably iron. ***

Gazebo

Vinyl Gazebos

Vinyl gazebos also require minimal maintenance, and can look as attractive as real wood, without the problems of rot or warping. The only care they require is a hose-down about once a year. Another possibility for a gazebo is stone, including marble — a marble gazebo will look exceptionally beautiful, but will be very expensive, and is really for those who want an extremely formal garden layout, to complement a classical-style home.

Gazebo

 

Pop-Up Gazebos

A different style altogether is a pop-up gazebo, which you can use as and when required, for instance for a social event or a charity sale, and then dismantle it afterwards. You can find foldable pop-ups, which are made of sturdier materials and stay in one piece when taken down — thus making them easier to put up.

The more common type is the practical pop-up, which requires assembly, and can be quite complicated until you get the hang of it. They can be either open-sided or enclosed. If you are likely to use it regularly, pop-ups are the least expensive type of gazebo. However for one time events and parties many companies offer pop-up gazebo hire or rental.

Gazebo

Three Ways to Acquire a Gazebo

If you are wondering how to get hold of a garden gazebo, there are basically three ways you can do it. If you have good carpentry skills you can build it yourself from scratch, or, if you are not quite so handy, you can assemble it from a gazebo kit. Alternatively, you can hire a contractor to plan and build your gazebo for you, to your exact specifications.

Building the gazebo yourself from scratch requires not only a high level of carpentry skill, but also a good set of plans. If you are not experienced in drawing up plans, there are many companies that provide gazebo plans either for purchase or for free.

A more manageable approach for a DIY project is to assemble your gazebo from a kit. Gazebo kits are an excellent alternative to poring over plans, and buying and shaping the raw wood, though they do still need some carpentry skill. Kits come in an astonishing range of gazebo designs, so you are bound to find something that suits you.

Gazebo

You can find kits for a hot tub gazebo, a patio gazebo, and a wide selection of traditional gazebos. The gazebo kits are also very easy to assemble, assuming you have the basic skills — most of them come with clear directions, and include all the parts required to put it together. Hands down the best place to purchase is online in places like Amazon.com where you will almost always find huge discounts year-round and almost always free shipping too!

Hiring a contractor may not necessarily cost a great deal more than using one of the more expensive gazebo kits, and it means you can have your structure customized down to the smallest detail. This means that if you are dreaming of a unique gazebo that will amaze your neighbors, or if you have set your heart on a specific ornamentation or trim, you can have exactly what you want.

Gazebo

 

How to Choose Your Design

Whichever method you adopt, you still have to decide on your design, and there is such a vast assortment of gazebo designs to choose from that the decision can be very difficult. However, the most important consideration to bear in mind is that the style of your gazebo should fit in with the style of your house, garage and other permanent structures.

If it doesn’t, it will look out of place. For instance, it’s not ideal to use a traditional or classical design if you have a very modern style of house. As far as shape is concerned, you should think twice about installing a round gazebo, unless you have really set your heart on this design.

Not only does it not complement most house styles, but you have to have a very big structure to have enough space to fit your furniture in. A round table will fit very well into an octagonal structure, and this is what many people choose. A 14-foot octagon can easily accommodate six people, and leave ample room to move around.

Gazebo

If you are doing the work yourself, a plain square or rectangle will be the easiest to construct, although a square gazebo does not work very well with a round table. If you want to include a couple of recliners as well as dining furniture, a rectangle may be the best option.

Alternatively, you can choose what is termed a rectangular oval — that is, a rectangle with the two short ends having two panels that are joined to a point — which increases your available space considerably.

One decision you have to make is between a hard top gazebo and a soft top, or gazebo canopy. A hardtop gazebo features a solid roof, made of strong plastic or aluminum. The roof will have other substances mixed in with it, such as polycarbonate and acrylic, for complete protection from snow and rain.

Gazebo

A gazebo canopy can provide a luxurious look to your structure. There are different types of strong fabric you can choose from, including canvas, nylon and polyester. This will protect you from the sun, but not of course from snow and heavy rain.

Either a soft top or a hard top gazebo can have a roof structure that is either single tier or double tier. The single tier structure resembles a pyramid, and has a vented opening at the peak, to allow free movement of air. The double-tiered roof has a second roof frame on top, usually smaller than the lower tier.

Gazebo
Patio Gazebo

Rather than having a free-standing gazebo at the end of the garden, you may prefer to install a patio gazebo, which is designed to sit on your patio, or be fixed to the floor. If you are building a new patio, you can incorporate a patio gazebo into the design. Otherwise, you can modify your existing patio to accommodate one.

Usually, a patio gazebo is installed either by bolting it to your patio surface, or by drilling holes in the patio floor, and cementing the poles into the holes. However, some kinds of patio gazebo simply sit on the patio surface. If you want one of these, for the sake of simplicity, make sure that it is heavy enough and strong enough to withstand strong winds.

Gazebo

 

Hot Tub Gazebo

Yet another popular option is a hot tub gazebo. Hot tubs are becoming increasingly fashionable, and a hot tub gazebo can provide you with more opportunities to enjoy the experience without worrying about the weather. If you live in an urban area where houses are close together, you will also appreciate the extra privacy. An alternative to a hot tub gazebo is a spa gazebo.

Gazebo

There are two basic types of spa or hot tub gazebo: open and closed. The open type has the benefit of enabling you to look at the stars while soaking. However, if you live in an area with frequent rainfall, a closed gazebo makes more sense, and gives you more privacy too. A hot tub gazebo is most commonly constructed of red cedar.

If you have an existing spa or hot tub, it’s quite easy to find gazebo kits that enable you to build the structure around it. If you are installing a spa or hot tub gazebo from scratch, you need to choose the location carefully. It’s important to ensure not only that it is easy and convenient to use, but also that it enables access to electricity, plumbing and ventilation.

Gazebo

 

The 3 Season Gazebo

Unlike your typical gazebos, 3 season gazebos are entirely closed in by windows and screens. They can be any style or shape gazebo with any designated amount of sides. These can be a phenomenal way to enjoy the comfort of your gazebo even when the weather outside starts to change with the seasons.

With this type of gazebo you simply close your storm windows when it’s chilly like in the early spring and late fall to ensure a temperature which is much more suitable. These windows will ensure your view is not inhibited either. And when it is warmer out, all you need are your screens.

Gazebo

These gazebos are the best way to get the longest use of your outdoor space throughout the year in comfort. They also allow you to customize and decorate the inside of your gazebo much more than other options do. Because they are protected from the elements you can use furnishings inside one of these which would be quickly ruined otherwise and you can also leave them there permanently.

Some homeowners even use their 3 season gazebos as extra storage space in the colder months or just temporarily. An extra plus of this type of structure is that the screens of 3 season gazebos also keep out pesky mosquitoes and other biting insects which can quickly ruin an enjoyable evening in your favorite place to relax.

Gazebo

 

The Classic 8-Sided Gazebo

The enduring classic 8-sided version is what we most often picture in our minds when we imagine a gazebo. Their octagonal shape means that they are symmetrical when viewed from any and every angle which is extremely pleasing to the eye making it the perfect focal point or accent for any garden or yard.

It also means it looks fantastic when placed anywhere whether off to the side, in a hidden corner, in the center, or near the patio. While it does have 8 sides, they are not totally enclosed so that you can still feel totally open to the cool breeze and fresh air. This style of gazebo is raised off of the ground which adds a feeling of elevation as well making garden views that much better while you escape the summer sun.

Gazebo

 

A Lattice Gazebo

Similar to the 3 season gazebo a lattice gazebo can be any shape. However it is partially enclosed by lattice walls. Some but not all, even have lattice roofs. Lattice consists of strips of wood, metal, or plastic which are crossed to form diamond or square shaped spaces. The lattice walls can have round, square, or rectangular openings of varying sizes depending on the model you choose to purchase or build yourself.

And while you can leave your lattice as is, and it will provide you with a shady spot, most people choose to use it as support for climbing plants. A lattice gazebo covered in plants is like a garden hideaway. It creates a space like no other.

With walls that are alive they blend with the elements to make you really feel like you are part of nature especially because not only is it literally all around you and sometimes even above you, but you can actually reach out, touch it, and even smell it.

They can be exceptionally cool places to sit on a hot day and at night when lit from the inside, often evoke the feeling of being in a Chinese lantern, a unique and wonderful place to be and experience to say the least!

Gazebo

 

Location, Location, Location!

Choosing the right spot for your gazebo can have a dramatic effect on just how much you are able to enjoy it.  By answering 3 simple questions you can quickly narrow down the options and focus in on where your gazebo will work the best for you.

How Do You See Yourself Using Your Gazebo?

This is the most important question you need to answer because its function will go a huge way in helping to determine where you will place your gazebo.  If you ideally would like to use your gazebo for outdoor dining then it would be wise to pick a location closer to the house so you do not constantly have to run in and out for supplies.

If it is going to be a quiet spot to read, relax, or mediate, further back from your house will mean it will be much quieter and therefore a more convenient place to do all of these type of activities.  Gazebos are also commonly used near pools and outdoor kitchens as a shady spot to get out of the Sun that still allow you to be social because you’re still close to all the action.

Gazebo

 

What View Would Be Ideal From Your Gazebo?

You also need to decide what you ideally want to be looking out at from your gazebo.  If you have a water feature or pond, a gazebo placed next to either would be a phenomenal way to experience both to their maximum potential.

The sound and beauty of water with the comfort of a gazebo goes perfectly hand in hand.  Many pond owners use their gazebos as place to relax while being able to watch their fish swimming. A quiet corner garden is another view that is a popular choice and it one with the sweet fragrance of flowers.

And of course if you are lucky enough to have a view of the mountains, forest, a river, or a lake these also make great spots.  The most popular view people choose is actually that of their own house, so don’t overlook this as an option either.

Choosing a space that has a view of your house will give you a chance to not only admire your home but to keep an eye on the kids as well. It can also be just a great way to see your property as a whole!

Gazebo

 

What Would Be The Ideal View Of Your Gazebo?

Just like you want to have the best view possible from your gazebo, for many homeowners having a view of their gazebo is just as important.  This might sound silly but it’s not at all.  Gazebos are structures which add to the beauty of your property.

However, if your goal is privacy and you want to keep your gazebo in a quiet niche away from the house having a view of your gazebo from the house might not matter to you. If you have kids, this might be a different story as you might want to see them if they decide to play inside the gazebo.  Or maybe not.

Gazebo

It’s all a matter of your priorities and how you want to use your gazebo.  Many home owners simply purchase gazebos as ornamental structures to enhance the look of their property so they want them positioned to fill in an empty space or love the look of a gazebo next to a garden full of spring flowers.

They can also function to block out a street view or unsightly neighboring lot substituting ugliness for beauty effortlessly.  You might want to be able to see your gazebo from your kitchen window as you have your morning coffee, it’s up to you.

Gazebo

So if you are planning on installing a gazebo, don’t forget to ask yourself these 3 important questions.  They will keep you happy, relaxed, and enjoying your gazebo right where it should be, in the best location for you.

Other points you need to consider are whether you want it wired, and whether or not you want screens or windows. Electrical wiring can greatly increase the usefulness of the gazebo, and lighting can make it look incredibly attractive from a distance. Screens will deter mosquitoes and other uninvited guests from joining your dinner parties, while the addition of removable windows will make your gazebo much more versatile for year-round use.

Gazebo

 

Don’t Forget To Do These 5 Things When Planning Your Gazebo

Purchasing or building gazebos can be a very exciting task. Just knowing the shady relaxation that awaits you in your outdoor structure can be thrilling. However there are 5 things people usually forget to do when planning their gazebos. By taking action and doing these simple tasks before you purchase, install, or build your gazebo, you will save yourself time, money, and frustration.

1)Check The Drainage And The Soil

A spot which gets flooded easily or every time it rains is not where you want to place your gazebo. It’s a good idea to observe where the paths of water lead in your yard or garden when there is a heavy rain. While this might mean getting a little, or very, wet it will save you a ton of frustration and time, as a result of not installing your gazebo in a spot which becomes flooded.

If your gazebo will be close to your house you must also take into consideration your gutter downspouts, where they empty, and where the water that is emptied leads to as well. You will need to find a spot that has solid soil and does not accumulate water.

Gazebo

 

2)Find Out What’s Underneath The Soil

Once you find a spot with solid soil that doesn’t flood don’t just start digging. You need to find out what’s under the soil before you waste any time. There could be TV cables, electrical lines, gas lines, or plumbing drains beneath that perfect spot of yours’.

You don’t want to damage any of these; it’s just not worth the risk. Call your local utility company first, and they will come out and mark all lines if there are any. Best of all this will do so for free.

Gazebo

 

3)Check Your Local Building Codes

Building codes are the structural and safety outlines that we need to follow for all buildings and structures. Not complying with your local building codes can easily end in expensive fines which is something no homeowner wants. Be sure to call your local building department and find out what these local codes are. They many times are not the same as national or state codes, so it’s always worth the call.

You might have to deal with regular inspections or need a permit, or maybe not. Either way you want to give them a call and go over your plan with them to make sure it doesn’t need any modifications, and if it does what they are.

Gazebo

 

4)Check Your Local Zoning Laws

Your local zoning laws will tell you the restrictions you may have when it comes to your gazebo project. These can include quite a few important factors which can really impact your gazebo plans. They will tell you the size and height of the structures which can be installed on your property which can affect what type and maybe even the style of gazebo you ultimately choose.

The allowable lot coverage is another import restriction and one which will tell you the percentage of your property which can have buildings. This could potentially prevent you from installing a gazebo if you are over the limit. Zoning laws will also include easements, which are the restricted areas on your property that must not be built upon as they are allotted for utilities and or emergency access.

These can definitely influence where you place your gazebo. Another important zoning law can be how far your structure has to be setback from your property line; this too may impact your gazebo’s final location. Anyway, make sure you call your local zoning department to find out.

Gazebo

 

5)Talk To Your Neighbor(s)

The most overlooked action people forget to take is to talk to their neighbor(s) about their gazebo project. Many people don’t even consider it. However, being that most homeowners don’t like to have their gazebos right up against their own homes, it means that many times they are installed very close to property lines.

This can be a major source of friction and problems between neighbors, especially if they feel as if you are encroaching on their property. We are not all blessed with great neighbors and even if we are it’s always respectful and also just a nice gesture to inform them of your plan.

While it’s not necessary by any means, just the act of doing so can ease an uptight neighbor’s tensions and save you and your family years of aggravation and problems. It’s a simple gesture that can really be worth it!

Gazebo

Taking these 5 actions will put you ahead of the curve when it comes to dealing with potential gazebo problems. Not only will they eliminate the vast majority of potential ones, but they will make sure you don’t end up dealing with any unpleasant surprises after your build or install your gazebo. So have fun in your gazebo planning process and get these done before you purchase, install, or start building to quickly put you on the road to gazebo success.

Buying a gazebo is a big decision, and takes a little thought, but you won’t regret it. You’ll love the stunning array of options available, and you’ll delight in the beauty and comfort the gazebo adds to your home, as well as the way it opens up endless possibilities for your life. You may also, of course, receive a pleasant surprise when you find out how much value it has added to your property.

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Understanding Rattan Garden Furniture

Understanding Rattan Garden Furniture

Rattan Garden Furniture

Elegant and exotic, rattan garden furniture is a versatile choice that can enhance any outdoor space. And with this all-in-one guide you will quickly learn all of the top types, how and where to use them, along with the secret to purchasing them cheaply, and much more. So let’s begin.

Nowadays, you actually have two basic choices when it comes to the material of your furnishings: natural rattan or the synthetic variety known as rattan effect. While both are often commonly called rattan furniture they are of course a little different and you’ll want to know how.

Natural Rattan Furniture 

Natural rattan is made from the rattan palm that is found in parts of south-east Asia. This is a unique type of palm plant that is slender and vine-like. The grain of the wood actually grows vertically instead of in rings, which helps make it one of the strongest types of wood in the world.

The fact that it is essentially a hardwood vine means rattan is a perfect material for making garden furniture. Unlike other types of wooden furnishings which are made from solid pieces of wood, rattan is woven around a frame.

Rattan Garden Furniture

This unique woven texture gives rattan garden furniture an exotic appearance that is incredibly stylish and visually appealing. The natural strength and durability of rattan allow furniture made from it to be able handle outdoor use and support heavy weight.

At the same time rattan furniture itself is very lightweight and easy to move, yet won’t be blown over in strong winds. And because it is so flexible it can be made into an enormous range of shapes, sizes, and types. The fact that it requires minimal care to maintain doesn’t hurt either.

Rattan Garden Furniture

 

Rattan Effect Garden Furniture

So what is rattan effect furniture? Basically, it is a manmade version that is manufactured to look like natural rattan and still have all of its excellent qualities, but with a few added advantages. Rattan effect is a little stronger and tougher than natural rattan and can even a bit lighter in weight too.

Normally it is made from a plastic resin such as polypropylene or polyethylene. Cheap rattan effect garden furniture is usually made from polypropylene which may look more like plastic. Polyethylene can be more realistic, and when shopping you may see it described as “PE rattan,” or even “PE wicker.”

Rattan Garden Furniture

Another material is what’s known as polyrattan. This is actually a mixture of polyethylene and natural rattan. Polyrattan garden furniture in particular can look so authentic that it is almost impossible to tell apart from the real thing.

Some types of polyethylene and polyrattan weave are also made to be more resistant to ultraviolet light so they will not fade even when left out in the strong sun for extended periods of time.

Rattan Garden Furniture

Which Is Best Rattan Or Rattan Effect Furniture?

Many consumers aren’t sure whether to go with natural rattan or rattan effect furnishings. And the answer really depends on your personal preference. Authentic rattan is generally considered more prestigious and there is definitely a special charm that only furniture which is made from natural wood has.

Rattan effect garden furniture is usually less expensive and more impervious to the weather which is why it is also sometimes advertised as, “all weather rattan garden furniture.” Therefore in regions that get a lot of rain such as the UK it is often the preferred choice. If you want something that looks similar to real wood but is more durable it’s an easy way to go.

Rattan Garden Furniture

Popular Sets And Varieties

You can definitely buy individual rattan furniture pieces but for convenience and better deals most consumers purchase sets. These can range from having only a handful of pieces to including everything you could possibly need. Here are the most popular sets and varieties of rattan that you will want check out.

Chat Sets

Not everyone has a large outdoor space or needs a lot of furniture. When this is the case, a small rattan garden furniture set such as what’s known as a chat or conversation set is an excellent choice. These are usually three piece sets and will include two chairs and a small coffee table. Bigger sets may have four chairs.

Chat sets are ideal for balconies or any outside space that is very limited in size. But they are also perfect for anywhere else you’d simply like to sit and have a conversation, a glass of wine with a friend, or your morning coffee.

Rattan Garden Furniture

 

Basic Four Piece Sets

For something that will provide enough seating for a few guests or the family and won’t take up too much space, a basic four piece set is usually the right solution. They normally will include two chairs, a two-seater love seat, and a rectangular coffee table.

A rattan 4 piece garden furniture set can also be very budget friendly, especially when made from rattan effect. These sets are popular for smaller patios, decks, and gardens but also porches since they have everything you’ll need to make your space functional and enjoyable.

Rattan Garden Furniture

Sectional Sofa Sets 

When you need more seating and want furnishings that you can really kick your feet up and relax on, sectional sofa sets are the way to go. While these sets usually start out at around five or six pieces per set they can really range in size so what you choose should depend on your space and your needs.

Rattan sectional sofa sets are almost always modular, which means that you can separate the individual pieces and configure them in whatever way is most convenient for you. Many people actually like to purchase large sets and break them up by using groups of pieces in different areas.

Rattan Garden Furniture

Sets either come with a rectangular sofa or one that is round. Rectangular sofa sets will usually include a sofa, a rectangular coffee table, chairs and possibly some ottomans. Rectangular sofas can work just about anywhere but are often used to fill a space in a corner or against the wall.

Round sectional sofa sets typically will have a round sofa, multiple ottomans, and a round coffee table instead of a rectangular one. The ottomans are usually designed so they can be used as seating and there may be enough to form a full circle. Using round rattan garden furniture can be a cozy way to surround a fire pit or accent your curved patio space.

Rattan Garden Furniture

Another common use is to place your sofa so that it is facing a focal point such as a scenic view or swimming pool. The curves can also work perfectly in certain outdoor structures like gazebos. You can even use your round garden furniture to create a private relaxation nook by placing it so that it faces a wall or corner and closes it off.

When shopping for sofa sets, you’ll want to keep an eye out for features such as Velcro straps which can help keep your cushions in place. Some models will also come with clips to keep the sections of your sofa firmly secure although you may be able to purchase these separately.

And for all the extra comfort that luxury rattan garden furniture has to offer, don’t forget to consider what’s known as deep seating. Deep seating sets will have chairs and sofas with thicker cushions, higher backs, and oversized dimensions. They are considered to be the comfiest choice particularly for anyone who is taller.

Rattan Garden Furniture

Dining Sets

There’s no better way to enjoy a meal on a warm summer’s night than while sitting at a luxurious looking table with friends and family. Rattan garden furniture dining sets are stylish, sturdy, and yet lightweight so that they can easily be moved or put away.

Sets will come with a dining table and usually anywhere from four to six chairs but they can be larger. Unlike other types of rattan seating, dining chairs don’t always come with cushions. That’s because they are comfy enough to sit on without them. Some chairs may have the added benefit of being stackable for easy storage.

Rattan Garden Furniture

Tables come in square, rectangular, and round shapes depending on what you prefer. And while some dining sets will use only rattan materials, others may be made up of a mixture such as rattan dining chairs with a glass or wooden table. Since rattan is woven and may not be totally flat, some sets will also include a glass top for the table.

When you don’t have the space for a full dining set, a rattan bistro set can usually work. While the average set can sit two, larger ones can allow four people to dine even in a confined space. If you live in apartment or condo these are ideal for the balcony or just creating a more personal place to eat or drink coffee.

Rattan Garden Furniture

 

Combination Sets

The biggest sets are made up of many different types of furniture. These are an investment that will ensure you have a stunning space for your guests and family to relax and enjoy for years to come. Combination sets can often have twenty to thirty pieces of furniture or more, and include everything you need to furnish your entire outdoor space.

For example a large set might have chairs, coffee tables, ottomans, sectional sofas, a dining set, outdoor chaise lounges, and maybe even day bed. But each set is different and what it includes will depend on the manufacturer. Once you have one there will be no more purchasing piece by piece or mixing and matching.

Rattan Garden Furniture

Some manufacturers may even allow you to customize sets to your needs. So if you specifically wanted your set to include an extra 6 seater rattan garden furniture sofa for instance, it wouldn’t be a problem. While these do cost more than smaller sets, when purchased wisely they offer the best value.

By shopping online you can usually expect to pay anywhere from twenty to fifty percent less than in a home or furniture store. And often the larger the set the less you will pay per individual piece. Some sets may throw in free extras as well such as furniture covers for even more savings.    

Rattan Garden Furniture

 

Rattan Cube Garden Furniture

A very unique type of dining set is what’s known as rattan cube furniture. These sets are typically made up of a single square or rectangular table that has a glass top along with around four to six chairs. They get their name from the fact that they specifically designed so that the entire set can form a cube shape when it’s not being used.

The chairs are the perfect height to be stowed away under the table. If the set also includes ottomans, these can in turn be tucked under the chairs. Rattan cube garden furniture can add a highly sophisticated and modern look to your patio or garden while helping to save much needed space.

As you could probably guess they are a favorite choice for small patios and gardens. The ottomans of some rattan cube garden furniture sets can double as seating so you can entertain even more guests without having to buy extra chairs or take up any more space.

Rattan Garden Furniture

Rattan Egg Garden Furniture

For something a little different, there are egg shaped rattan chairs. These are low to the ground and usually come with both back and seat cushions. Normally you will see them available in chat sets that include two chairs and a small table.

Rattan Garden Furniture

Some sets are designed so that all of the pieces can be stacked neatly on top of one another when they aren’t being used which of course can be perfect not just for easy storage but when used on balconies and in smaller spaces too.

Swing chairs are another type of egg shaped rattan furniture. While more expensive than a hammock, they are typically considered more comfy, much easier to get in and out of, and a lot safer too. They make for a cozy spot to read a book, take a nap, or just take in the outdoors and will quickly become everyone’s favorite place to relax.

Rattan Garden Furniture

 

Rattan Garden Furniture With Storage

A smart way to really get the most from your furnishings and at the same time use your space much more efficiently is to choose pieces or sets that also offer storage. Many different types of furniture are made with a hollow space inside to store your sofa cushions, extra throw pillows, towels, or whatever you would like to keep in them.

Rattan Garden Furniture

These are purposely meant to be discreet. Coffee and end tables, love seats, sofas, ottomans, chairs, and even chaise lounges all can be made to hold extra items without being visible to your guests or taking up any extra space.

There are also other storage options such as deck boxes, storage cabinets, and even trash bins that are made from natural rattan or rattan effect which you can use to help prevent clutter and match your furniture at the same time. Deck boxes in particular can hold an enormous amount items.

Rattan Garden Furniture

 

Day Beds

Day beds are another fun round rattan garden furniture option. Because they are really like a blend of a couch, bed, and chaise lounge all in one, day beds are the ultimate way to relax outdoors. Wherever you decide to place one a rattan day bed will make unwinding look good.

Large enough to fit the whole family but small enough to be a romantic spot for two, a day bed is an investment that will be enjoyed and used to the fullest by every member of the household.

While some are one piece, most models today will include one or two ottomans that can be pushed together to create a spacious spot to relax or that can be separated and used for extra seating. If you will be using yours in a sunny spot you should be sure to choose one that has an adjustable canopy which will allow you to block out the sun and transform it into a shady spot in seconds.

Rattan Garden Furniture

 

Outdoor Chaise Lounges

An outdoor chaise lounge is a special type of chair that is made for reclining in the sun. But regardless of whether you are sunbathing, reading, enjoying the shade, or having a cocktail, a rattan chaise lounge will make sure you do it in style.

In fact, these are one of the best rattan furniture options for creating a high-end and resort-like appearance at home on your patio or deck, but especially around the pool. Sets usually will have two or more chairs so you can purchase as many as you need for both you and your guests as cheaply as possible.

Rattan Garden Furniture

Since they can be can be made into shapes that other materials can’t, many rattan chaise lounges have curves that not only look elegant but that can support your body and back in ways that more rigid plastic, metal, and wooden varieties cannot.

This is one of the few types of rattan furniture that doesn’t require cushions for you to be comfy. And because they are woven, rain and water from wet bathing suits will drain through the chairs so that they stay dry. You may want to consider chairs which are also stackable that way storage is simple and you can save on furniture covers.

Rattan Garden Furniture

 

Outdoor Bars

For backyard events and entertaining guests you won’t want to overlook outdoor bars either. These are not just great for the patio but work very well in a pergola, adjacent to outdoor kitchens or even indoors. Fortunately a rattan bar is typically very light so you can always pick it up and move it to where the action is.

A lot of people actually purchase two that way they can place them together either to create a longer bar, one that is L-shaped, or use them in different locations. Bars will come with shelves for storing your glasses, mixers, bottles, blender and whatever else you need to entertain. And some will also have a glass top to help drinks stay level.

Rattan Garden Furniture

If you will be planning on sitting at your bar, you will want to think about getting a set. The average rattan outdoor bar set will come with two bar stools, so you won’t have to worry about finding stools separately that both match and are the correct height.

There are rattan accessories of course to help match your bar and furniture. Since an actual bar does not have any way to keep drinks cold, many consumers purchase a rolling cooler to make sure they always have ice on hand. A rattan bar cart could work too and can sometimes be used as a cheaper alternative to a bar if you will only be entertaining a few people.

Rattan Garden Furniture

 

Typical Rattan Garden Furniture Colors

You’ll find both natural and rattan effect furniture available in a handful of colors some of which are often used for specific reasons. Luckily all of these colors also happen to be neutral, so you don’t have to take these suggestions too seriously. All of them will work well with any existing color scheme you may have and in just about any location.

The two best selling rattan colors are without a doubt brown and black which is why they are both so widely available. Brown is rattan’s natural color and therefore it appeals to many people. Brown rattan garden furniture is often used in gardens and yards that have more organic elements.

That’s because it blends so well with trees, plants, stone, and wood. Or you may want use your brown furnishings to add a natural feel to a space that needs it. Some darker brown pieces may be a mixture of brown with strands of black which can really add to their appearance.

Rattan Garden Furniture

Black rattan garden furniture on the other hand is well-known for how sleek and modern it can be. In fact it is one of the most popular choices for both highly modern and upscale spaces and can be quite striking. Grey rattan garden furniture is a handsome way to go too. Lighter grey options will sometimes include white colored strands, while darker ones may include strands that are black.

And while it isn’t seen as often as other choices, white rattan garden furniture offers a very clean appearance that can range from more vintage to contemporary or even modern. With some colorful or contrasting cushions white furnishings can really stand out.

Rattan Garden Furniture

 

Add Some Extra Color And Style

Most types of rattan garden furniture will come with cushions or even a couple of pillows. But with a few throw pillows of your own you can increase the comfort, color, and even add a personalized style. Choosing a solid color that matches your furniture is one way to go and don’t forget bright colors can help to grab attention.Rattan Garden Furniture

Or you may want to pick pillows that work with a specific theme such as as a coastal or tropical one. But there are many styles, patterns, colors, and prints to choose from so you can get creative. Most high quality pillows that can be used outdoors are made from polyester and are resistant to water, staining, mold, mildew, and UV rays.

Another simple trick for adding some color and catching the eye is to add an outdoor rug under your furniture. A vibrant weatherproof rug can give you the pop of color you need and allow you to enjoy your space in bare feet. When made from recycled plastic this is one accent that can make cleaning up much easier too since it will usually only require a quick sweep or hosing down.

Rattan Garden Furniture

 

Finding The Best Deals Quick And Easy

When shopping for rattan the biggest mistake the average person makes is shopping at their local furniture or home store. Even when you do find a discount in these places it will usually take a lot of time, driving around, and luck. You most likely will also have to wait until the winter for a rattan garden furniture sale since that’s the off-season.

Local shops typically don’t offer a wide range of sets or options and what they do have is over-priced. Checking them out though, can help you to give you an idea of what you like. The secret to finding the best quality rattan garden furniture at the lowest prices is to shop on the internet and stick with sets. Doing this can literally save you thousands of dollars.

Rattan Garden Furniture

By using trusted sites like Amazon.com you will be shopping in a marketplace where you have the advantage as a consumer. Since retailers are competing against each other it naturally keeps prices as low as possible. Basically it’s like a giant rattan garden furniture clearance sale every day and year-round.

You also have the benefit of being able to read reviews on the products from consumers who actually purchased them. You won’t pay retail, and virtually all top rated rattan furniture sellers will offer easy returns so if you’re not happy you don’t pay at all. It’s a win-win. Some will also even throw in free shipping!

Rattan Garden Furniture

 

Rattan Furniture Care

Even though both natural rattan and rattan effect garden furniture are durable, a little care can go a long way and the more protected your furniture is, the longer it will last. Of course placing it in a spot where it can stay dry and is in the full shade would be ideal. But partial shade can help to prevent fading from UV rays too.

Can you leave rattan furniture outside in the rain? Yes, but cushions on the other hand should be removed when it’s raining and kept somewhere dry so that they don’t retain water. You’ll want to do this even with cushions that are advertised as weatherproof.

Rattan Garden Furniture

Rattan can withstand freezing temperatures but it needs to be covered if it will be kept outdoors in the winter months or during extreme weather conditions. Covers for rattan garden furniture can also protect furnishings from the sun, rain, pollen, pets, dew, or just help to keep it clean and looking like new when it’s not being used.

Choosing covers which are made specifically for rattan or wicker are the best option. These are often made to be a bit heavier to protect the lightweight rattan from strong winds. They may also have straps which attach to the legs and ensure the cover itself will stay on no matter how windy it gets.

Rattan garden furniture covers that have a soft material on the inside like fleece can help to make sure that natural rattan does not get scratched. When shopping, you may want to purchase individual covers or larger ones that can protect multiple pieces or even your whole set at once.
Rattan Garden Furniture

 

Cleaning

To keep your rattan furniture free of dust a quick wipe down with either a dry or damp soft cloth is all you’ll need. For a more thorough cleaning, simply take off your cushions, and spray your furniture down with the hose to remove and loosen debris. A bucket of warm water would work as well.

Once your furniture is soaked scrub it lightly with a soft cloth or sponge that has been dipped in a mild cleaning agent such as dishwashing liquid or detergent mixed with water. A soft bristle brush or toothbrush can help you to get dirt out of the crevices. Rinse it off with clean water and allow it to completely dry for a few hours before replacing your cushions.

Since not all cushion materials are the same you will of course want to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for care. But in general cushions should be spot cleaned with dish washing liquid. And for a deeper cleaning, cushion covers can be removed and machine washed.

Rattan Garden Furniture

With this info you now know more than enough to find the best rattan garden furniture for any space, save some serious cash, and add stunning beauty to your home in the process. Be sure to come back to these tips so that you can take advantage of them and get the most from your rattan with the least effort.

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The Complete Guide To Pergolas

The Complete Guide To Pergolas

Pergola

Used by the ancient Egyptians to beat the heat when walking from building to building and to grow climbing plants like grapes, pergolas are one of the oldest types of garden architecture that have stood the test of time. Today, with advancements in designs and materials they can serve us in a multitude of ways which add beauty, convenience, relaxation, and more to our lives and homes.

So Exactly What is a Pergola?

Pergolas have a unique design which separates them from other outdoor structures. They are normally made up of four posts which support a roof made up of beams or slats. Unlike other options there are no walls, leaving all four sides completely open. The beams above are spaced so they do not form a closed roof.

Pergola

Although they are normally square or rectangular they can be a few other shapes as well. It is this simple yet intelligent layout that really makes a pergola such a useful garden or patio structure because it allows the homeowner to:

Maximize The View And Their Enjoyment Of It

No walls means you have an unobstructed view of your yard. This is often the perfect solution if you have a particularly attractive: view, focal point, or garden you would like to enjoy while relaxing.

Keep Cool And In The Shade

Since there is nothing to block them, cool breezes flow freely through the structure. The slat style roof also blocks the majority of the sun’s harsh rays giving you a shady yet still open space. This makes pergolas a superb spot for all sorts of activities from dining with the family to sitting in the hot tub after a hard day’s work.

Pergola

Create A Living Structure

One of the best parts of owning one of these is that they are designed with climbing plants in mind. As they creep up the columns and eventually onto the roof and even hang down from it, you will get even more shade plus some added natural beauty and fragrance. There are many different types of flowers and vines which can really make a statement.

Block Out Neighbors Or Unsightly Views

Not every yard, garden, or patio is perfect, in fact far from it and neither are neighbors or their properties. There are often things or we would like to block out and keep from sight. You can use one to keep features on your own property out of view but pergolas are also commonly used as a privacy screen to block out neighbors. There are many accessories which you can add on to help you accomplish this.

Add Style

With many types, sizes, materials, and even shapes to choose from this is one landscape feature that can really add some style to your outdoor space and set it apart. From traditional to modern and Asian to Mediterranean you can create any style or theme you’d like or add to your existing one. Pergolas are also an excellent way to do so without having to do any major renovations.

Pergola

 

Increase The Value Of The Property

While this is not usually the primary reason people purchase them, it’s the truth. This is because they add to the curb appeal and functionality of your home. And that can really tip the scales when it comes to choosing whether or not to buy one or deciding between a pergola and another option.

They are an investment not only in your relaxation and enjoyment but one which will increase the value of your house and property at the same time.

Typical Pergola Materials

Wood

A wooden pergola can be a fantastic looking natural choice. Wood always goes well in any outdoor setting and many homeowners adore its charm. Cedar is probably the most popular of all types of wood used. A cedar pergola is naturally resistant to both decay and rot and will also have the famous cedar smell. The oils produced by the wood itself also help to repel water and insects.

Pergola

Redwood is another common choice and considered one of the best woods for pergolas and gazebos due to its strength and good- looks. Like one made from cedar, a redwood pergola is naturally resistant to rot and insects. While they may be more expensive than other options they are also more durable.

You will often find both cedar and redwood pergolas stained or finished to look like other woods, such as walnut for example so you get their toughness but in the color you prefer most.

Pergola

Pressure treated wood; normally either fir or pine is yet another way to go. These have a very wide range of colors from brown to green and are chemically treated to be able to handle the outdoors. Pergolas made from pressure treated wood are very strong but also usually pricier.

Of course there are many other different woods to choose from as well. Oak pergolas can make for a dependable and long-lasting outdoor structure and there are even bamboo pergolas for someone looking for a taste of the exotic that is tough-as-nails.

Metal

Metal pergolas can actually be any one of a variety of different types of metal such as steel, aluminium, or wrought iron. The vast majority of the time, regardless of the metal used they will be black. This is because a black pergola just looks stunning when made from any of these and actually can look from antique in style all the way to modern.

Gunmetal grey is another fantastic color choice for metal. Aluminium pergolas are the most common since they are generally the least expensive and also fairly light in weight while at the same time very sturdy. Steel of course is extremely strong and will last for years into the future.

Both aluminium and steel pergolas will have a powder coated finish for extra protection. The most costly but also often times most ornate are made from iron. A wrought iron pergola can look incredibly upscale and requires very little maintenance.

Pergola

Vinyl

Vinyl has become more and more popular in recent years. This is because they are often cheaper than wooden ones, lightweight, and are very easy to care for. A vinyl pergola requires literally no maintenance other than the occasional cleaning from a hose and for this reason many are advertised as “maintenance-free”.

You won’t have to worry about rot or cracking as with some types of wood. Typically you will find them in white color. However while white vinyl pergolas are without a doubt the most common some are grey, and others are brown or tan to resemble real wood.

A few even use a combination of vinyl and wood pulp to make a structure which looks so much like wood it can be hard to tell the difference but with all the benefits of vinyl. For extra strength some models will have beams and supports that are reinforced with steel.

Pergola

Buying A Pergola

When purchasing a pergola you have three options: buying a kit, having one custom made, or building one yourself. Which one you choose depends on your needs, budget, and skills.

Pergola Kits

The majority of consumers go with kits for a good few reasons. They come in a variety of convenient and attractive styles, sizes, types, and in wood, metal, and vinyl. In terms of shape they are usually square or rectangular. Square pergola kits can be found as small as 6.5’ x 6.5’, but more often 8’ x 8’, 10’ x 10’, and 12’ x 12’.    Rectangular options will typically be 8’ x 10’,   10’ x 12’, or 12’ x 14’, while some are even larger.

Kits also don’t require you to be a professional in order to install them. Most will take two people and few hours to do so. Since they can be put together by the average person and include all the hardware, some kits are advertised as DIY pergola kits.

Pergola

However you can almost always pay for installation from the manufacturer or hire someone to do it for you privately. Price-wise kits are very reasonable. Online is the best way to shop since you will find highly discounted deals year-round and most of the times with free-shipping as well.

The majority of manufacturers will offer also accessories such as covers and curtains that made to match and fit your specific model as well, which also makes kits very appealing.

Custom Made Pergolas    

For very specific preferences your best bet is to get one custom made. While they may be more expensive than a kit, they are designed with your unique specifications in mind so you’ll be sure that they fit the dimensions and style of your space perfectly. Many homeowners choose to go with a custom made option if they really want a pergola but there space is too small for a standard kit or they require one which is much larger.

It is also a smart choice if you want a round pergola or another shape other than square or rectangular, such as triangular. And of course if you are looking to use only certain types of wood or stone this is your best bet.

Building A Pergola

If you have the time, skills, and tools building your own can be an incredibly rewarding and sometimes less expensive choice. This usually but not always, means doing so out of wood.  By far the easiest way to accomplish a project like this is to first purchase pergola plans.  High quality plans will often include detailed step-by-step instructions for multiple types of structures, helpful advice, and many times an array of pergola pictures to give you inspiration.

Pergola

 

Common Pergola Designs And Types

While most are free standing pergolas there are many different designs and types to choose from, some which are more suited for certain functions or areas than others.

Wall Pergola (also called an attached pergola or lean to pergola)

A popular choice for someone looking to save some space is what is called a wall pergola. Unlike the standard variety which stands on four posts, these use only two and attach to the wall of your house for support. Since they are typically smaller they are a great choice for decks and patios where they can provide you with a shady spot to sit outdoors.

A wall pergola can also be used to shade windows and is an excellent way to connect detached buildings to the house such as a garage or pool house. Many homeowners use them as a transitional space between indoors and out and of course to add to the look of their house itself.

Pergola

 

Window Pergola

Some attached options don’t have any legs at all. A window pergola is much smaller than the normal variety, and is used to increase the curb appeal of a home by installing it on walls above windows or doors on the house and/or garage. While they are not going to provide the benefits of a full-sized model they will help to shade the interior of the home, cost much less, and make a great accent piece particularly if you own a larger pergola already.

Pergola

 

Corner Pergola

A corner pergola as its name suggests is made to fit in corners. Because of this they normally have three legs and are shaped like a triangle. They are not as common as other types but can still be found in kits or of course be custom made. Adding one in the corner can help you to get the most from a space which many people simply overlook.

Whether it’s the corner of a deck, patio, yard, or garden they let even homeowners with limited space enjoy being able to own a pergola. These are also a very popular for use above outdoor kitchens or barbeque areas.

Tuscan Pergola

Probably the most unique looking variety, a Tuscan pergola, typically uses grand looking round columns for support. While some columns are made from stone many are actually made from a variety of materials to give you the look of real stone without the weight and price.

Adding one to a Mediterranean style garden is a great way to add to the theme that will surely make a huge impact on your outdoor space. In fact, they are so striking and lavish in appearance that they are often used as the main focal point of the entire yard.

Pergola

Japanese Pergola

Wooden roof beams that curve upwards similar to much of the architecture in Japan are often used to create a Japanese pergola. This could be just what is needed for an Asian style garden and always looks sublime when placed near a koi pond, water feature, or close to some ornamental bamboo.

Amish Pergola

Handmade wooden furniture is one of the specialties of the Amish people. They are well-known for using only the highest quality woods and being expert craftsmen. Since they are made by hand and from real wood no two Amish pergolas are exactly the same, each will have its own charm, distinct grain, and coloration.

Pergola

 

Arched Pergola

Another decorative take on the standard type is the arched pergola. An arched roof can make for a breath taking focal point that adds value to your property and commands attention. They are also a stylish way to add some height. Many can be quite large too. Because of this you will sometimes see them used as a car port, over walkways, or anywhere that needs some shade.

Many kits have arched roofs and if you want one which is much larger or to your own specifications there are many builders who specialize in custom made arched options and can make them in virtually any size, style, and arch height.

 

Pergola

Louvered Pergola

Unlike other choices a louvered pergola uses angled slats on the roof above. Because they are angled they block out more of the sun’s rays which can be a lifesaver in really hot areas. These slats are normally adjustable and that is very convenient because as the angle of the sun in the sky changes during the day you can ensure you let only the amount of light in that you want giving you full control.

A louvered pergola will let you warm up the patio, keep cool, or look at the stars depending on what you need at the moment. Many can be quite modern in style and even will automatically adjust the angle of the slats at the touch of a button.

Pergola

 

Outdoor Kitchen Pergola

Outdoor kitchens are always a fabulous place to cook and enjoy your garden or patio with your family and friends. However, sometimes they need to be shaded from the sun so you can keep cool while entertaining, preparing food, eating, or just relaxing. An outdoor kitchen pergola does this with style. It adds value and beauty to your home but also makes your outdoor kitchen even more functional and comfortable for everyone.

You can purchase kits that fit over your kitchen, are specifically made for mounting to a barbecue island, or many people get them custom made in order to cover a larger or uniquely shaped space. Since they cover the actual barbeque of the kitchen they are sometimes also advertised as or referred to as a barbeque pergola.

Pergola

 

Pergola Accessories

Covers

Many pergolas come with covers that will need to be replaced after being in the elements for a few years. Pergola covers are also a smart choice for someone who would like protection from both the rain and sun. By adding a cover you are able to enjoy your pergola any time of the day and in most weather conditions.

Most manufacturers will sell replacements but there are many high-quality universal covers that go with just about any model and size. A large number of these are tan in color, since it goes so well with just about any color structure.

PergolaSome pergola covers have grommets to let rain through and also to allow you to tie it to the beams or posts. Others come with rope ties or a sleeve to which a weighted rod is inserted which keeps the cover in place even in very high winds. And of course you can always purchase rolls of shade fabric and attach them yourself.

A retractable cover is yet another way to go. Many people prefer these because you can open or close them to meet your needs at the moment. Retractable pergola covers are also an excellent choice for people who like to look at the stars but may live in a very rainy area or one which gets very bright or strong sun during the day.

Pergola Curtains

Not all protection comes from above. Pergola curtains are also an option that will block out the sun but provide privacy too. Not all structures come with curtains but there are many extremely high-quality attractive outdoor curtains which can be purchased and attached using curtain rods.

When used near a pool they can really add a tropical feel to your space. They are also a good choice if you are using your pergola to cover your hot tub since they will help to obscure the view of prying neighbors.

Pergola

 

Privacy Screens And Walls

Privacy screens and walls can be attached to or placed near your pergola to block out the sun’s rays and keep things private too. Some manufacturers offer privacy walls specifically made for certain models so they match, and fit snugly between the posts blocking an entire side completely. But buying a privacy wall on your own is easy as well. Privacy screens come in a wide variety of materials like cloth and wood.

Fans

Depending where you live you may require a little more to keep you comfortable. If that is the case an outdoor ceiling fan is the best solution. They also are a terrific way to keep pesky insects like mosquitoes from ruining your fun since they simply can’t fly in the air stream of a fan.

A wet rated indoor/outdoor ceiling fan as opposed to a damp rated one is really the smartest because they can get really wet without any problem or danger whatsoever. Just be sure to choose a fan which is proportional to the size of your structure. So if it’s large, choose a bigger one, if it’s a small pergola choose a fan with smaller blades.

Pergola

And of course to ensure your fan matches and makes your space look fantastic always go for one that works with what you’ve already got. That means it matches the colors, style, and material of your home, furniture, accessories, or pergola itself.

Lights

One thing that should definitely not be overlooked when planning is lighting. Keeping in mind how you will be using your structure will help you to quickly choose the right pergola lights. There are many different ways to create the ambiance you are looking for, and here are some of the best pergola lighting ideas:

String Lights

The simplest and most inexpensive choice is to use string lights. With many shapes, sizes, colors and varying brightness to choose from you can really have some fun with these while adding a romantic feel to your pergola that won’t break the bank. Simply intertwine the string with the beams above and plug them into an outdoor outlet or outlet which has been built in to the pergola itself and you’re done!

Pergola

 

Mounted Light Fixtures

More difficult to wire in but a great tool which can add light and also help to create a cohesive looking outdoor space that goes with the style of your home are light fixtures which are mounted on the posts. These are lantern style lights which tend to illuminate where your pergola is but provide dim lighting inside of it.

Built-in Lights

Built-in lights can be used to highlight the structure of your pergola without being too overpowering. Add them to the beams above either in all four corners or using smaller bulbs evenly spaced in each beam or every other beam. Most homeowners who decide on built-in lights use them with an attached pergola since it has easy access to electricity and will run the wires across the top of the beams to keep them hidden.

Hanging Lights

Ideal for an outdoor kitchen pergola or one placed over a dining area hanging lights give you an upscale look with enough illumination to cook, eat, and entertain your guests. Hanging lights can really make your outdoor structure look like an extension of your home and are like with built-in lights very popular with owners of attached pergolas since they provide an easy way to connect the wiring.

Pergola

 

Up-Lighting

Usually requiring a professional to install but well-worth it up-lighting can really increase the appearance of your pergola which also means your outdoor space as a whole. Lights are placed in the ground or flooring shining upwards. These can have a very dramatic effect when set against the base of the posts. Up-lighting will give you soft lighting that’s not too bright, and absolutely splendid for romantic evenings.

Don’t Forget Some Plants

Climbing plants can add color, beauty, fragrance, and shade to your pergola and outdoor space. There are many magnificent plants to choose from that will make you feel like you are in your own private heaven and blur the line between your garden and home. Some of the most popular are: roses, grapes, hydrangea, jasmine, trumpet vines, clematis, and wisteria. Many homeowners place large pots containing the plants of their choice next to the support posts with poles to train them to climb upwards.

Pergola

 

The Best Pergola Spots

On The Deck

For many people  their deck is where they spend the majority of their time relaxing outdoors. Since it is up against your home, you get to enjoy the outdoors yet have all the advantages you need close at hand. A deck pergola can be attached to the wall or be free standing.

Triangular models may be used in corners if you have limited space, or if that’s just where you prefer to use one. They will shade your deck and many times the inside of your home if they are close to doors or windows.

On The Patio

Patios can get pretty hot in the warmer months of the year, and depending on where that is it could be year-round. Adding a patio pergola will let you use it when you thought you couldn’t and make it much more comfortable in the process.

It will also help to protect your furniture from the sun’s rays which can many times lead to damage. If your patio is closer to the house you might want to consider an attached structure which will make for an easy lighting job but it’s up to you!

Pergola

 

In The Garden Or Yard

When thinking about adding one to your garden or backyard keeping a few things in mind will help you out a lot. Be sure to place it in a spot where there is proper drainage. You don’t want to setup a gorgeous garden pergola only to be unable to use for days after it rains. Take a quick look the next time it rains and see where the water on your property tends to accumulate if at all.

Also, think about your view from the structure. Placing it where you have a view of a flower garden, your home, pond, or distant mountain scenery can take the experience of sitting in one to a whole new level. If you have children you may want to have it facing their play area or the pool so you can keep a watchful eye on them while treating yourself to some much needed relaxation.

Or you may just want to create a secluded spot separated from everything else. Use your preference, needs, and the features of your property to help you decide.

Pergola

Don’t overlook taking into consideration the view from your home. Being able to place your garden pergola where you can not only get the best use of it but also where you are able to admire its good looks from a window, back, porch, deck, or patio is an extra plus.

Over The Hot Tub

Hot tubs are one of the top ways to unwind. Yet, when it’s too sunny, it’s not always so comfortable to stay in too long. Plus, many of us live in residential neighborhoods where our neighbors can see into our backyards which is not something that you want to think about when sitting in one. A hot tub pergola can transform your hot tub into your own personal and private oasis.

It is easy to find and install a kit that will fit over any size tub. Many people who own a pergola already choose to purchase a portable spa and place it inside. There are many accessories to help you get the most privacy possible. You can attach lattice to the sides, privacy screens or walls, curtains, and of course covers.

If you use a cover you can use your hot tub even in the rain and block out even more sun. Retractable covers are especially popular for hot tub pergolas because you can open them to see the stars on a clear night which can be very romantic.

Pergola

 

Next To The Pool

A classic spot is next to the swimming pool since they just work so well there. Having a place to get out of the sun and dry off for a while that is still outdoors is a must when owning a pool. They can function as shady spot where parents can relax and still be responsible for swimming kids, just quietly read a book, or have an afternoon drink.

Placed behind a pool, they usually offer a phenomenal looking view which can really make your property look incredible. Pool pergolas also make romantic places to dine in the evening, with the proper lighting of course. It’s actually quite common for swimming pool owners to buy the largest kit they can or have one custom made in order to fit their outdoor kitchen, bar, and dining area all near the pool as well, keeping everything convenient and cool.

Pergola

It’s easy to see why the pergola has lasted since ancient times. With so many options and ways to use them, they will not only enhance your property and its value but the quality of your life too. For an outdoor structure that defines function, openness, and beauty pergolas can’t be beat.

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Butterfly Garden Stakes Brighten Up Your Outdoor Space And More

Butterfly Garden Stakes Brighten Up Your Outdoor Space And More

Butterfly Garden Stakes

Without enough color outdoor spaces can often look dull and even boring. For brightening up your yard, adding visual interest, or even light, butterfly garden stakes are a quick and easy solution. With this guide you’ll be able to choose the right type for your needs and space.

There are a couple of different choices that can help you get the results you’re looking for. Each type is unique and can be used in slightly different ways. So here’s what you need to know about each of them.Butterfly Garden Stakes

 

Plastic 

Probably the most common of all options are small butterfly garden stakes made from PVC or other types of thin plastic. These actually are so thin that often are mistaken for coated paper. Because they are made from plastic they are waterproof and both wind and weather resistant. And with their lifelike size, colors, and patterns they can look quite real from a few feet away.

They will also have a very thin metal stake that will support your butterfly but at the same time is easy to conceal so that seems as if it is not attached to anything. Because the stakes are so slender they can actually often be bent or wrapped around things that you want to attach your butterfly to, such as branches.

Butterfly Garden Stakes

Since the stakes are thinner than other varieties, you may want to wet the soil you are placing it in first. One feature many consumers prefer when shopping are adjustable wings. These can be set to the exact angle you’d like and since they’re also very thin can sometimes flutter a bit in the wind which is a nice touch.

Plastic butterfly garden stakes are definitely the cheapest out of all the options listed here and they are sold in packs which usually have quite a lot of them, so you pay very little per individual butterfly. This is good news because there are many places you can use them.

Butterfly Garden Stakes

They are often used as a way to add color to walkways, flower, gardens, or individual flower pots. You may even want to use them indoors to liven up your houseplants or kitchen garden. Many people like to add their butterfly garden stakes to their fairy garden or close to their resident garden gnomes.

Butterflies also can be used as inexpensive yet attractive addition to flower arrangements for outdoor events and parties. You might also want to take advantage of their bendable stake and add one or a handful to an outdoor sign, wreath, fence, or even on your Christmas tree.

Butterfly garden stakes can also make discreet markers for your dog’s designated outdoor bathroom space or for certain flowers in your garden that may need specific care. Don’t forget when shopping though that butterflies can vary in size, so it’s always a smart idea to check the measurements of the ones you are considering before you buy them.

Butterfly Garden Stakes

 

Butterfly Garden Stake Lights

A very fun and colorful option are butterfly garden stake lights. These look like brightly colored and realistic butterflies by day, but by night glow to give you a dazzling display. They are usually made from plastic but can also be metal or even glass. Lights may come in packs or be sold individually.

When shopping, you will want to decide if you want the actual stake to light up as well. Some models have a plain metal stake with a butterfly that lights up while others have a transparent stake that contains LED lights inside so that both will give off light.

Butterfly Garden Stakes

Most lights are actually solar powered so they don’t require any extra wiring or hassle. They contain a battery which is charged by a solar panel so you won’t waste any electricity when using this environmentally friendly option in your yard.

But you will need to make sure your solar powered butterfly garden stakes are placed in a sunny spot. The majority of lights will come with an on/off switch so that you have the option of using them all the time or just occasionally. Most will also be able to change colors and have different modes.

Solar garden butterfly stakes are a unique lighting choice for paths and driveways but also as can work as accent lighting in gardens, around patios, and in potted plants too. By placing them near a garden bench, deck, or gazebo you can enjoy their color-changing display while relaxing in the evenings with family and friends.

Butterfly Garden Stakes

 

Metal

Fans of both butterflies and art will most likely want to consider metal butterfly garden stakes. These come in a range of different metal types such as steel and copper. And while some are painted in realistic butterfly colors and patterns others are just painted to be extra bright in order to grab attention and add as much color as possible.

However you may prefer the look of an un-painted metal butterfly. A rusted or weathered finish is another option if you’d like something with a more vintage appearance. A lot of butterflies will have sections cut out which can be very appealing to eyes and allow you to see through them.

Butterfly Garden Stakes

Metal butterflies are usually more expensive than other materials and often sold individually. They are also available in much bigger sizes than other materials, so if you are specifically looking for large butterfly garden stakes metal might be the best way to go.

Because these are not just a type of garden art, but actually metal yard sculptures they are sure to add a lot of visual interest to flower beds, lawns, and depending on their size can even be used as a focal point.

Butterfly Garden Stakes

 

Glass

Another choice that can make a big impact with their appearance are glass butterfly garden stakes. Glass options are handcrafted pieces of artwork and the sight of the sun’s rays shining through them can be stunning. Most glass butterflies will actually be a combination of both glass and metal.

They will typically have a metal stake and framework for the body while the rest is made from glass. The glass is often hand-painted to add extraordinary detail to patterns and even a personal touch from the artist. Stained glass is an option too so you can enjoy a colorful glow just like you’d see in church windows.

Butterfly Garden Stakes

Some stained glass butterfly garden stakes are even hand-painted as well. Like with the metal variety, glass butterflies are definitely a fabulous way to add color and also some real artwork to your outdoor space but with the added advantage of being able to catch the light in wonderful ways. Some butterflies use plastic that is made to look like glass to create a similar looking effect.

As you now know, butterfly garden stakes offer much more than just a splash of color. And with the many types you have to pick from, you can add to the appearance of any outdoor space and take it from dull to vibrant with little effort.

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