A Guide To Buying Garden Chairs, Benches and Sofas
When planning out seating arrangements for your garden, there are three main options to choose from. You can use individual chairs plotted in various points to give options to your visitors; there’re benches that give an intimate place to cosy up; and there’re sofas for the more lavish relaxers.
No matter which option you decide on, it’s important to ensure that you don’t sacrifice on things like comfort and aesthetics.
If you’re not quite sure on which is best for you, have a read through this guide on how to choose the best garden seating.
Choosing Garden Seating: Your Considerations
Before we look at the types of garden seating available, it’s worth discussing some initial considerations that you’ll need to take into account. Afterall, your seating arrangements are what ultimately dictate the level of relaxation you can offer in your garden, so it helps to step back and make some observations beforehand.
In particular, you’ll want to be aware of the following:
- How many guests do you have over on average?
- Is there additional space you could utilise away from your usual seating arrangements?
- What style are you hoping to achieve with your garden?
- Are you adding to an existing collection or making a change?
- How big is your seating area?
They may just be for one person to sit and relax or dine on, but outdoor chairs are a crucial element in creating an inviting space for outdoor relaxation.
Chairs are often part of a set or can mix and match for the perfect combination, however some can be used as standalone pieces, such as the elba Relaxer Chair (pictured above).
Types of Garden Chairs
There are a few different types of garden chair available, each one being more applicable to different uses than the last. Here’s an overview of each one from egg chairs to recliners:
Offering both a unique style and comfortable feel, egg chairs are an iconic piece of garden seating. They are designed to be cosy and relaxing, while also offering strong ergonomics. Egg chairs are usually larger than most, with a seating position suspended mid-air. Ideal for a corner piece dedicated to kicking back, egg chairs are the perfect statement piece of garden seating.
Looking for an egg chair of your own? The Palma Single Cocoon (pictured) is a strong choice, with a solid construction and neutral design, it’s a great choice for those who have never had an egg chair and are looking to test the waters.
If relaxation is your main priority, you can’t go wrong with a reclining chair. Recliners allow you to put your feet up thanks to an adjustable mechanism that transforms the lower half to extend upwards or be pushed back into a lying down position, just like the Palma Recliner (pictured above).
If you love a garden party or barbecue with friends, you’ll undoubtedly need some strong seating for everyone to enjoy. Dining chairs are designed to be slid underneath tables, allowing guests to eat, drink and socialise in absolute comfort. Usually found as part of a dining set, dining chairs are best chosen in accordance with the style of the rest of your dining area to create a cohesive feeling garden.
Benches can be an intimate, cosy place to snuggle in a corner of your garden, and make the ideal spot to relax with a coffee and newspaper.
Think about where you want the bench in your garden. Is there a peaceful nook where you can set up your bench? How about next to some French doors, on a patio area with a view of the whole garden?
Types of Garden Bench: Regular or Supportive
Mesh and wooden benches give a garden a romantic feel and are perfect for sitting with a loved one and enjoying your outdoor space. They offer ideal spots to find a blissful moment which turns into a memory to last a lifetime.
Some benches come with lumbar support to assist with ergonomics, like the RHS Chelsea Bench (pictured above), while others offer a more understated appearance to blend in with their surroundings, such as the Elba bench.
Benches also have the added benefit of being easier to maintain and move, thanks to their one-piece construction. Rather than moving multiple chars back and forth, a bench can be re-positioned in one go. The same rule can be applied to large gatherings; instead of buying multiple chairs, a simple bench can be used to seat multiple party goers with just one piece of furniture.
That’s right, sofas aren’t just for the living room. If you have a family that likes to enjoy time together outdoors, or you simply like to spread out and lounge, sofas are the perfect way to get everyone involved.
Pictured: Cora Collection
3-seater and 2-seater outdoor sofas can mix and match with single chairs, as well as coffee or dining tables to create a full lounge set
Take the comfort of the indoors with you thanks to cosy seat cushions that let you sink into the sofa. With both wicker and wood, bucket shaped and classic sofa designs, you can pick the right sofa for your space. Whether you need comfort on a patio, decking area, or a conservatory, sofas always bring a relaxing vibe to any garden.
Types of Garden Sofas
When it comes to garden sofas, there are two main designs to choose from:
A corner garden sofa is a great choice if you want to create a cosy and intimate seating area in your garden. As the name suggests, these sofas are designed to fit neatly into a corner, making them particularly great for smaller gardens where space comes at a premium.
The elba Grande Corner set (pictured above) is a great example of this. Styled in an L-Shape with a slightly indented corner seat, this corner sofa can slide effortlessly into the very edges of any garden, while still offering plenty of seating space.
For those looking for more customisation in their gardens, a modular sofa provides the freedom needed to make an adjustable garden sofa that suits your exact needs. These pieces come with individual pieces that can be arranged however you’d like. Need less space? Take a piece away. Need more? Bring the piece back in.
The Palma Compact Corner sofa set (pictured) for example has a compartment on the rear to allow for an additional chair to be slid in and out when needed.
Room For Two?
There are plenty of ways you and a loved one can snuggle up outside.
Daybeds and pods offer a perfect way to relax after a long day. Not just garden furniture, these are statement pieces, grabbing the attention of all who enter your garden.
Twin seats or companion sets are ideal for afternoon tea, with two chairs separated by a small table, like the simple yet effective Café table (pictured above) Often, these tables can accommodate a parasol for added cover, while also being available in wicker, metal or wooden materials.
Pictured: Palma Daybed
Garden Seating Materials
Material choice plays an important role in garden seating. Some materials are naturally more comfortable than others, leading to some important decisions you’ll have to make.
Wood and wicker pieces are often bigger, taking up more space. However, they also have a variety of uses, offering places to both lounge or dine. Mesh chairs often come pre-assembled but are limited to just dining rather than lounging.
For more information on garden furniture materials, have a read through our whole buying guide that discusses all the options we have, including pros and cons, considerations, and more: Garden Furniture Materials Buying Guide.
Looking After Your Chairs, Sofas and Benches
KETTLER seating is durable, weatherproof and built to last, however we advise storing them away over wet and winter months, to make them last longer. Unlike tables, chairs are often moved – tucked in, pulled out, or adjusted to make room for more chairs.
Thankfully, we have plenty of information on how to care for specific types of garden seating in our garden furniture care advice guide.
Quality Outdoor Seating Available
We at KETTLER know how important relaxation is, especially outdoors. That’s why all our seating ranges are devised with comfort in mind, no matter the look you’re after. Have a browse through our outdoor sofas, chairs and benches in the rest of our garden furniture range, today.