Design: take a seat


Design: take a seat

Some thoughts on furnishing the garden

A garden room isn’t finished til it’s furnished, and furniture needs to play a dual role, being both practical and pleasing. On the practical side, comfort, low-maintenance and durability are key. New technologies, and creatively applied old ones, have massively increased the options available. Lightweight furniture in powder-coated and rust-proof metals and woven materials allow the flexibility to choose a shady spot for lounging in summer and a sunny spot in winter. Colour-fast, non-fading fabrics mean that outdoor furniture is now as lushly welcoming and comfy as your favourite armchair.

When choosing furniture we like to contrast textures. Rather than doubling up timber tables and chairs on a timber deck,  a contrasting material works better. Likewise, a timber table and chairs, or timber-based sofa with upholstered cushions, warms up a stone-floored terrace. We also love the casual look and easy flexibility of outdoor bean bags.

The furniture shown on this page is from Paola Lenti. Lenti had been a Milan-based art director and graphic designer working for fashion and events companies before she founded her eponymous company in 1994. She brought her fashion eye for colour, textile and form to furniture manufacture and her company quickly became renowned for innovation in textile and design. The rugs and seating use felted wool, cotton and synthetic fibres in hundreds of hues with colour a driving force. Think outdoor sofas in cherry and musk stick pink, turquoise sun beds and tangerine hanging seats.

In the garden here we chose pieces from the Otto range of chairs and poufs. The removable covers in that popping lime green and anthracite grey are made of a polyester rope cord. The furniture hunkers down with balls of clipped buxus in a carpet of native violet in the entrance court of the house, overlooked by giant sentinel pots of zamia. Out the back in the main garden, they offer a textural contrast to the timber pool deck, a sculptural form molded by light and shadow, and an irresistible invitation to sink in, put your feet up and take it easy.

Dedece is the exclusive agent for Paola Lenti in Australia, and also has other great outdoor furniture. We also shop at Cosh Living and Eco Outdoor.

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