When it comes to designing outdoor rooms, Walsh says, “My clients want to bring
indoor comfort to their outdoor living spaces.” So, in addition to paying homage
to the outdoors, with colors inspired by nature, the sea, and sky, and utilizing such
accessories as candles, throws, rugs, and pillows that “represent the warmth and
comforts of home, and that generate an emotional response of calm and serenity,”
she pays close attention to illumination.
“Clients ask for dimmers, timers, the ability to easily control their outdoor lighting.
I think the Instagram-loving, tech-obsessed millennial generation will continue to
propel outdoor living spaces forward into highly functional spaces,” she continues,
“as they value experiences and convenience more than previous generations.”
Gant adds, “The outdoor room will undoubtedly get ‘smarter.’ Just as smartphones
and smart cars have evolved, so will the smart home. Comfort and ease of use
will drive the atmosphere in the outdoor room, and temperature-control systems will
allow for longer outdoor seasons for more homes. The outdoor room will truly become
a seamless extension of our lifestyles.”
Guaranteed to Last
With climate change wreaking havoc on weather around the
world, a manufacturer’s guarantee is more important than ever.
And, many appear to be holding up their end of the bargain.
“With proper care, many homeowners find that our fabrics
long outlast their warranties,” says Gant. “For Sunbrella shade
fabrics, we offer a 10-year limited warranty from the purchase
date. If your fabric suffers color or strength loss due to normal
use and exposure during the warranty period, we will replace it.
For Sunbrella upholstery fabrics, we offer a five-year limited
warranty.” What customers like is that most stains can be
removed easily “with no worry of harming the fabric,” perhaps
one reason more and more people are choosing to use them
inside the home as well.
Taking up that thread, Elton says that “especially with the mid
century movement we’re currently experiencing, our accent
chairs, some with leather elements, occasional tables, decorative
pillows, and casual dining pieces are being used indoors as well
Adds Walsh, “It’s fairly easy to find manufacturers who not only
make products that can withstand the elements—hurricanes
being the exception—but are just as beautiful and luxurious as
those you can find indoors.”
Proud not only of the “timeless, elegant design, quality, and
innovative materials and color of Brown Jordan products,” Elton
elaborates: “We back up everything we make, as long as it’s
taken care of correctly, and utilize a variety of practices to check
each product as it’s being developed.” In addition, the company
uses some of its own stores as “incubators” to verify various
aspects of a product prior to its release.
Feldman mentions that her in-house design and development
team is dedicated to “creating great pieces that withstand the
harshest environment…for life outdoors, anywhere…in all types
of spaces and places all over the world.”
Sunset-bright or softly
100% acrylic fabric
is both attractive and
easy to care for.
Designer Gil Walsh
creates an inviting
outdoor living area with
and a rattan-highlighted
dining corner. Drawn
from nature, the colors
(Image: Kim Sargent