by Jon Winters
Don’t Buy Garden Furniture Just Yet
The retail market for garden furniture is dominated by imports of finished and semi-assembled furniture sold mainly by major DIY and furniture outlets. Such garden furniture is decorative and very durable. There are many different types of cheap garden furniture including hardwood, teak, metal, cast iron and even sets that come with glass tables. The French and German markets are two of the most significant in Europe for garden furniture, and both have shown steady growth over recent years. The fashion for dining or taking tea alfresco traveled easily to America, where garden furniture became a fixture of the landscape, just as it had in England.
A purchase of teak garden furniture is a true investment in value. Teak is an excellent choice for outdoor furniture as the wood ages beautifully and will give you many, many, carefree years of enjoyment. Teak is a very densely grained wood and is highly resistant to rot, warping, shrinkage and swelling which makes it ideal for outdoor patio and garden furniture. You will want to choose your style of teak furniture carefully as your outdoor teak furniture will be around for many years. Most teak furniture owners will leave their teak furniture outside all year long as there is no reason not to, such is its resilience.
Indonesian teak is considered by many teak furniture manufacturers to be the highest quality of teak wood available in the world today. Teak furniture is generally all made with mortise and tendon joinery. This is a superior method of construction which results in more solid and durable pieces of furniture. Most manufacturers will also use solid brass castings, screws and bolts in the construction of their furniture, which adds that touch of class.
The highest quality teak furniture will also be fully machine made. Fully machine made teak garden furniture guarantees the owner will have more uniformity and a more perfectly finished product. Enjoy garden furniture that is solidly built, needs little maintenance, and will go on giving pleasure in your garden year after year. When you choose your garden furniture, keep in mind the geographic location that you live in. If your area is prone to extremes of temperature, you will need to ensure your purchase will withstand these extremes.
An example of this is, where your summer temperatures are extreme, you may not want to look at purchasing metallic garden furniture. There have been some nasty accidents primarily caused through the hot sun on metal furniture. If you prefer wood furniture, again bear in mind the temperatures that the furniture will be exposed to. You will need a lot more resistance to extremes of temperature than if you live in a more temperate climate.
Also remember what the main use of the garden furniture will be. If you are wanting to dine outdoors, for example, you may want to look at a design that incorporates a revolving center. This makes the outdoor dining experience a lot more pleasurable, especially if your table is large; everyone will be able to reach the middle.
If you are all out entertainers, make sure your garden furniture is either equipped with plenty of accessories, or alternatively at a later date you could add individual pieces to it. Extra chairs, footstools, loungers and the like are often part of a larger set of which the basic setting is your first purchase. Although functional, beware of glass tables. If you are interested in a glass table, make sure you also purchase an umbrella that will cover the circumference of the table. This is mainly to avoid the problem of glare from the sun. Glass tables are also more prone to breakages when compared to wooden tables.
It does not matter what you choose, the age old adage of “you get what you pay for” applies equally to garden furniture. If you are wanting something to stand the test of time and climate, you will end up paying accordingly. There are plenty of cheap versions of garden furniture on the market, and many will be efficient enough depending on what you want. Once again, if you take the time to decide the purpose for the garden furniture, you will not be disappointed.
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