Patio furniture sets are great for bringing the convenience of comfortable furniture outside. Whether you want to sit around a table with patio bistro sets or dining sets, or you want to lounge in a conversation set, or you want to use a bar set for its intended purpose or to hold kids’ toys or outdoor cooking supplies, there are many choices of styles, materials, colors, and prices. Here we’ll offer you some of the best choices based on our research.
Enjoy spending more time out of doors! Staycations, that is, vacations where you stay home, are increasingly popular, and they offer a good reason to dress up your yard, patio, or balcony for relaxation and entertaining. And of course, you can use your outdoor furniture in the spring, summer, and fall. (If you bring it indoors, you can use it year round. More about that in the FAQs.)
Four Types of Outdoor Furniture Sets
Amazon organizes sets of patio furniture into four categories, and they make sense. Bistro sets and dining sets are both groupings of tables and chairs, with bistro being a small table and a couple of chairs. Dining tables are good for more people. Think of the conversation sets as being similar to living room furniture for the out of doors. And while the bar sets can be used as bars of course, they are also useful for keeping all sorts of things handy.
Let’s look at some of the most popular examples of each category… By the way, we noticed while reading reviews at Amazon.com that customers often added photos of how their new furniture set looked on their deck or in their yard. Good for helping us imagine our own scenes!
PATIO BISTRO SETS
The first of these bistro sets, shown on the left, has been #1 every time we have gone to Amazon’s best seller list for patio bistro sets.. It is typical of the most popular kind of 3 piece patio bistro set (I’ve had a white one for years), and the tulip design gives the backs of the chairs an added flair. The other 3 sets show some of the diversity in the genre.These sets tend to be quite inexpensive, too.
Best Choice Products Outdoor Patio Furniture Tulip Design Cast Aluminum Bistro Set in Antique CopperMainstays Alexandra 3-piece Bistro Outdoor Patio Furniture Set, Red Stripe Cushions with Butterflies. Mainstays Sand Dune 3-Piece Outdoor High Bistro Set, Seats 2 (Tan)Adams Manufacturing 8590-01-3731 Quik-Fold Cafe Bistro Set, Sage
PATIO DINING SETS
These outdoor dining sets are all ready for your large family or guests. They can handle the wind, sun, rain, and whatever else the weather throws at them. The second one of these is designed to seat 4 people, and the others are designed for 6.
7 Piece Patio Dining SetAntique Bronze Outdoor Patio Furniture 5pcs Cast Aluminum Dining Set7-piece Outdoor Wicker Dining Set with Stacking Wicker ChairsWE Furniture Solid Acacia Wood 6-Piece Patio Dining Set
PATIO CONVERSATION SETS
Much like living room furniture, these sets are made for lounging, eating, and conversation. At least a couple of them look inviting for a nice nap as well. The prices on these outdoor patio furniture sets vary a lot, so look around for what suits you. These sets could also be called patio sofa sets.
Goplus 4 PC Rattan Patio Furniture Set Garden Lawn Sofa Cushioned Seat Wicker Sofa (Mix Gray)U-MAX 7 Piece Patio PE Rattan Wicker Sofa Sectional Furniture Set, BlackCloud Mountain 4PC Wicker Rattan Patio Set, Glass Top Table, Brown Rattan & Creamy White CushionsOhana Collection 7 Piece Ohana Outdoor Patio Wicker Sectional Sofa Set – Dark Gray
If you click on any one of these images, it takes you to that item’s page on Amazon.com and we just noticed that if you click on “Conversation Sets” on that page, in a small gray font just above the name of the item, it takes you to quite an interesting page, which shows more conversation sets under the following headings:
- Related to items you’ve viewed
- Best sellers
- More items to consider
- Top rated
- Hot new releases
- Most gifted
- Most wished for
Fun, and a good way to get a sense of what is current in the conversation set world! This way of clicking may well work with many other categories.
PATIO BAR SETS
Quite a few of the listings we saw for patio bar sets were for combinations with dining tables. If that is what you’d like to explore, here’s a link for the best sellers that Amazon.com designates as patio bar sets. The ones shown below we’ve selected for this page because they would be good as bars or as places to store other things.
Best Choice Products 3PC Wicker Bar Set Patio Outdoor Backyard Table & 2 Stools Rattan Garden FurnitureBest Choice Products Outdoor Patio Wicker Serving Bar Cart W/ Ice Bucket, Wine Rack- BrownCloud Mountain 3 PC Wicker Bar Set, Rattan Table & 2 Barstools, Creamy White CushionsAbba Patio 3 PC Outdoor Wicker Bar Set Patio Furniture Set with 1 Table and 2 Bar Stools, Brown
FAQs: Outdoor Patio Furniture Sets
Where to Buy Patio Furniture?
Buying online is more convenient. We’d say that the best place to buy patio furniture is online, and we could also make a case that the best place to buy patio furniture online is Amazon.com.
Why is online shopping better than local for patio tables, chairs, sofas, and other furniture?
What is our case for buying at Amazon.com? All of the above, with emphasis on:
- Great prices
- The helpfulness of reviews
- Amazon Prime means shipping is free for so many things.
- They show you the current best sellers (updated hourly) in all categories… for example, here are the current best sellers for patio furniture sets. From that page, if you want to know the best sellers for one of the four categories (bar, bistro, dining, conversation) you can click on it in the left sidebar.
We do recognize that you can’t test out the furniture by sitting on it, but hey, you might not be able to at a local store and we dofavor online shopping for its many other advantages.
Do You Have to Spend a Lot?
No, you don’t. According to the informative and reliable Consumer Reports,
When we last reviewed outdoor furniture at a wide range of prices, we found that in nearly every instance, the inexpensive furniture was well made, nicely finished, and well proportioned.
By the way, many of the items we link to would be considered inexpensive. A couple of ways that you might save some money when you are at a product page on Amazon.com are these:
- Look for a section called Compare to similar items, where 3 other items are compared to the one featured on that page, in a chart format. There might be one you like fine that costs less.
- Look for a section called Special offers and product promotions, and see what is there.
Is Assembly Difficult?
Well, it depends! Usually, it seems that it is not.
The product manufacturers often make some comments about how much assembly is required. And customers often say something in their reviews as well. But since people are so varied in their abilities to read instructions and to do things with their hands, the more reviews you read, the better an idea you will have. If a tool is included with the product and if you happen to have a similar tool, your own may be the better one to use.
If you have a problem in assembling your new furniture, ask a family member, friend, or neighbor to give you a hand. This solves the problem very often!
What Companies Make Beautiful Patio Furniture?
Quite a few companies make patio furniture sets. Here, in alphabetical order, are links to several that make the most. We know that a lot of furniture doesn’t necessarily mean beautiful furniture but in this competitive market, every one of these companies includes sofas, chairs, or tables that we would call very attractive.
- Better Homes and Gardens
- Best Choice
- Great Deal Furniture
- Home Styles
- International Caravan
- Oakland Living
It’s enjoyable to browse through the offerings of any particular manufacturer!
What Are These Furniture Sets Made Of?
They are made of a variety of materials, and here are the most widely used ones. Since you want outdoor furniture that will look good for many years, consider your location and the choice of materials. Some will stay attractive more easily than others. Patio furniture covers, described further down this page, can help with any material, but are especially useful for the more delicate ones.
Cast aluminum weighs very little, doesn’t rust, and is durable. It’s easy to move around. It’s also used in automotive parts, so you know it can put up with a lot of motion! Here’s a link to aluminum patio furniture.
Plastic comes in a myriad of forms, and they are all lightweight. That makes them easy to move around but also easy for the wind to blow over. Plastic furniture is often the lowest priced, and it does vary in quality, but you can choose sturdy plastic. It’s easy to clean with just soap and water. One enjoyable characteristic of plastic is that since it can take on all kinds of shapes and can easily be colored to any hue, you can find a very wide variety of looks in plastic outdoor furniture. Chairs are often shaped to be stackable. Click here for plastic patio furniture and accessories.
Rattan is the name of a strong climbing vine related to the palm tree, found in Africa and Asia. Over 600 varieties have been identified. All parts of the plant can be used to make many different types of furniture. It can be shaped, cut, and dyed in various ways. Here you can see quite a variety of rattan patio furniture.
There are several kinds of resins used in manufacturing many items. Resin furniture is typically made of HDPE (high-density polyethylene) which is a very dense plastic that holds up well. If I were buying some outdoor furniture today, I think I would look first at resin wicker.
It isn’t known to leach out chemicals and there is no formaldehyde in it. It is often used in outdoor wicker-style furniture. This link goes to the resin patio furniture.
Wicker is a style of weaving. It isn’t actually a material but people often think of it that way. If you see the term wicker rattan describing furniture, it means that the item is made of rattan and woven in a wicker style. Here’s a group of pages of wicker patio furniture.
According to Wikipedia,
Resin wicker, also known as all-weather wicker, is manufactured predominantly for use in outdoor patio furniture. It is meant to look like natural wicker. Synthetic polyethylene fiber resin wicker is generally durable, resistant to the sun’s UV radiation and water. Resin wicker is often used over an aluminum frame to create lightweight outdoor furniture.
Wicker is not actually a material, but a method of weaving…The term rattan is sometimes used interchangeably with wicker, but in fact depicts the fiber used to create the wicker work.
A variety of woods are used in outdoor or patio furniture. They will vary in how well they hold up, as well as in how ecologically they are being harvested, but all wood will benefit from being treated by you regularly with special oils or some kinds of wood sealants. We have a lot of indoor wooden furniture we got in Mexico and I use lemon oil on it, but we haven’t had any outdoor things to take care of. Wood certainly can make beautiful patio furniture, and you can see hundreds of examples here.
Wrought iron is heavy. The wind won’t blow it anywhere, but you may also find it difficult to move around, especially large pieces. Wrought iron tends to be one of the more expensive things used in outdoor furniture, and because it can rust you’d need to keep it covered and dry. You will likely want cushions with a wrought iron chair or sofa, for comfort. Look at iron patio furniture here.
How Do You Keep Them Clean?
Giving your patio furniture a little bit of cleaning regularly is the easiest way. This might include a little vacuuming or dusting.
Most materials used in outdoor furniture can be cleaned with just soap and water. We like to use a mild dish soap. If some food gets stuck on a table, gentle rubbing with some baking soda should remove it without leaving a mark; if you aren’t sure, try doing this first on a spot where it won’t show. It’s easy to rinse anything… just hose it down. This will also get any tiny bits of dirt out of the little places in resin wicker or cast aluminum.
Many outdoor pillows have covers that can go in the washing machine. Canvas can too. It’s good to put these things back in place while they are still slightly damp so they will stretch to fit perfectly. Often you can clean spots without involving the washing machine, just with water, a little soap, and a rag or a sponge.
If wrought iron rusts, some sanding and a rust-resistant paint will take care of it.
Where to Put Your Patio or Garden Furniture Sets?
Choosing the location for outdoor furniture can be fun. Maybe it’s obvious where it should go, but you may want to experiment. For example, by arranging a patio bistro set and a bar set or an outdoor storage bench, you could create a charming little nook that might call for a potted plant as well.
You will have ideas about where you’ll put the furniture before you get it, but those could change. You might suddenly have another idea. For example, the white cast aluminum bistro set that we’ve had for years has been in the greenhouse lately, but I was just thinking that it would be nice outside under one of the trees.
What to Do with Patio Furniture Sets in the Winter?
It’s good to protect your furniture in months you will be using it less. Your strategy will be different if you live in North Dakota than if you live in Florida. But you probably already know how much you would be likely to sit around outside at different times of year.
There are patio furniture covers, and here is a link to the best sellers in that category. The covers are quite reasonable in price, we noticed.
If you have a garage, basement, or storage unit, consider storing your outdoor furniture in them for the winter.
Can You Use Them Indoors?
Absolutely. This is really indoor-outdoor furniture. If I were starting out in apartment living now, I think I would choose to buy an outdoor conversation set of a sofa, an armchair or two, and a low table. I would use it in my living room and then later on if I had some outdoor space, part or all of the set could go outside.
So outdoor furniture has more versatility than indoors-only furniture. Since it comes now in so many attractive styles, your home isn’t going to look like you are just camping out! The clickable image here is of a set that has rave reviews.
Accessories: Cushions, Storage Benches, Covers, Lights, Extra Chairs
If you live where there are mosquitoes, you may also want a fan to reduce their numbers. They don’t like the breeze.
Cushions for Patio Chairs
Some outdoor furniture comes with cushions and some doesn’t. Here’s a link to the best-selling patio furniture cushions and here is a selection that shows some of the different styles. Considering how many years we have had our bistro set, I’m sorry we didn’t get cushions for it long ago! Soon I will get a set of 2 round cushions. Those metal chairs are more comfortable with cushions.
Greendale Home Fashions Indoor/Outdoor Seat/Back Chair Cushion, Roma StripePillow Perfect Outdoor Pom Pom Play Peachtini Wicker Seat Cushion, Set of 2Pillow Perfect Indoor/Outdoor Carmody Bench Cushion, NavyGreendale Home Fashions 15-Inch Round Indoor/Outdoor Bistro Chair Cushion, Set of 2
Outdoor Storage Benches Provide Seating and Storage
Benches with storage come in a variety of sizes and colors. Practical and good looking, they can also help you define the space where you have your outdoor living room, so to speak.
Covers for Outdoor Furniture
If you have fruit trees, or trees where roosting birds are prone to litter the area where you are putting your new furniture, you may want to use outdoor patio furniture covers much of the time. Otherwise, you may need them more for the seasons when you are using your furniture less. Here are some, and they come in a variety of shapes and sizes. This link goes to the best-selling patio furniture covers on Amazon, and on the left side of that page you can click on different kinds of covers, for tables, sofas, umbrellas, etc.
Classic Accessories Veranda Patio Lounge Chair/Club Chair Cover – Durable and Water Resistant Outdoor Furniture Cover, Large Classic Accessories Terrazzo Round Patio Table Cover – All Weather Protection Outdoor Furniture Cover (58202-EC)AmazonBasics High-Back Chair Patio CoverVonHaus Large Patio Bench/ Loveseat Cover – Premium Heavy Duty Waterproof Outdoor Furniture Protection (78 x 35 x 24 – 32 inches)
How About a String of LED Lights?
These add a festive note and are useful for seeing in the dark!
36ft Outdoor Globe String Lights LED Warm White Fairy Twinkle Lights(3/433ft 100 LED String Lights Dimmable with Remote Control, Waterproof Decorative Lights [Remote & Timer] 16 Feet 50 LED Outdoor Globe String Lights Weatherproof Outdoor Commercial Grade Lights – 48-Foot Strand includes 15 Energy-Saving LED Bulbs
Single Pieces of Patio Furniture
There are lots of these! Some examples:
Best Choice Products Folding Rocking Chair Outdoor Patio Furniture BeigeBest Choice Products Zero Gravity Chairs Case Of (2) Lounge Patio Chairs Outdoor Yard Beach- BurgundyOutsunny 3 Person Canopy Porch Swing – Black4′ Natural Cedar Porch Swing, Amish Crafted – Includes Chain & Springs
So What is the Best Patio Furniture Set for You?
Beautiful patio furniture can have have so many different looks. It comes down to the size and space you have in your outdoor area and your personal taste.
Our Patio Bistro Set
We have owned a white patio bistro set for something like 25 years. Made of cast aluminum, it has held up very well through several moves. We have used it in sunrooms, in greenhouses, on patios, under trees, and more.
Sometimes we have brought it inside to our dining room for a large dinner party when our dining room table wasn’t quite large enough, and at those times we have been able to seat 2 or even 3 more people by using it.
Its light weight has made it handy for moving around. It has brought us a lot of enjoyment of nature. I think my happiest memories of using it come from when we lived in Colorado and used to carry a tray full of lunch to the bistro set, then located across a creek from our house.
Our Outdoor Dining Set
We lived in Mexico for 5 years, and during that time we bought a large white plastic table and a set of 6 plastic chairs with arms. We had a lot of dinner parties with that setup, sometimes squeezing in up to 10 people around the table. When we moved back to the US, we brought the dining set with us and we continue to serve guests around it. Most of the time now, the table is a work space for gardening on our patio, and the chairs are scattered around: two in front of the house for watching sunsets or waiting for someone, one in my sewing room mainly used for holding projects, and the rest out in the back patio. We’ve gotten a lot of use from them.
May you have as much enjoyment as we have had from any outdoor furniture you use!
An Image for Pinterest
If you enjoyed this article and are on Pinterest, here’s an image about the best patio furniture…