Cedar Outdoor Furniture
With cedar outdoor furniture, backyards are turning into an additional space for family living. Many people are electing to stay home and improve their own properties with products of long term value instead of embarking on expensive vacations. When it comes to cedar items, there are certainly many products from which to choose. Whether for patio or garden, a wide range of options in an array of colors are available. Polywood outdoor furniture alternatives also provide another interesting and environmentally sound way to enjoy outdoor living.
Some of the pieces of cedar outdoor furniture which are available include patio sets, porch swings and benches and, of course, the classic Adirondack chair. Bistro sets and picnic tables grace decks and backyards, and tree benches provide a shady spot for summer lounging. Deck storage boxes keep miscellaneous items neatly stored, and some even have optional snap-in liners for use as a cooler during parties or other gatherings. Tables of every size provide space for casual dining or impromptu snacks. Durable and decorative mailboxes are also made from this material.
Gardeners will delight in the abundance of cedar products which correspond to their interests as well. Potting tables and tool sheds provide space for working on garden projects or storing gardening equipment. Stands which resemble umbrella racks organize rakes and brooms. Bench planters and window boxes burst forth with colorful flowers, and arbors and trellises made from cedar are overrun with luxuriant blooms. Garden bridges made from cedar beckon one towards gazebos where friends can sit and chat while enjoying a cool drink. Raised cedar beds for planting enable the gardener to overcome any soil deficiencies. Various sizes of planting boxes may be arranged to border outdoor 'rooms' or seating areas.
Classic cedar outdoor furniture is the top of the line for summer seating. Lightweight, yet resistant to splitting or warping, the western red cedar is easy to handle and accepts hardware easily. Because the wood contains oils that act as a natural preservative, the furniture is resistant to decay and insects. Therefore, this is a wise choice for outdoor use, even in moist or humid climates. (If the furniture is in direct contact with the ground, it may require a protective sealant.) As the furniture ages, it weathers to a silvery grey. White cedar has most of the same qualities, yet this type contains less of the natural tannins which protect the western red type. Therefore, it may not last as long unless it is finished. For those who wish to preserve the natural look of unfinished cedar, a new wood preservative which allows a bit of moisture to penetrate the finish is recommended. Do not use water sealers, as this may cause cracking or other problems. Those interested in designing an outdoor 'room' may take advantage of optional stains in a variety of colors which are available to personalize the look of the furniture. White, red, green, grey and blue stains are popular choices.
If the expense of this type of yard furnishings is beyond one's budget, he or she has several alternatives. Check out discount furniture suppliers on the Internet. At times, cedar outdoor furniture which has slight scratches or dents may be available at reduced prices. Another alternative is to look into the option of polywood outdoor furniture. Although these do not have the subtle aroma of cedar which many people find atractive, there are other advantages to these types of furnishings.
This polywood outdoor furniture is made of 100% recycled materials. Plastic (#2 HDPE) milk jugs are ground into small pellets. These are melted and fed into an extruder. Color and ingredients which guard against ultraviolet rays are added. These materials are shaped into 'boards' of the correct size and thickness. The 'boards' may be precisely shaped or cut as needed. Besides being made from recycled materials, the polywood outdoor furniture is guaranteed to not chip, peel or rot. They also will not become infested with insects. Items made from polywood are strong and will not easily blow away in heavy winds. They also have the advantage of looking like real wood. The items are well built and are available in a variety of colors. These colors may follow the traditional colors of cedar furnishings or one can sample from a palette of vibrant colors: red, blue, yellow, lime green and orange. Thus, there is plenty of room for the designer to set a certain tone or theme for the 'room'. Note that these colors are not supposed to fade, either. With darker colors, at times care must be taken on sunny days to avoid touching the surface directly, since it may become uncomfortably warm. A towel or seat cushion can remedy this drawback.
Whether one has cedar outdoor furniture or polywood outdoor furniture, be sure to use these resources for sharing some relaxing times with others. In I Peter 4:9, Peter urges the Christian believers to Use hospitality one to another without grudging. Invite a new friend to enjoy a barbecue in the newly renovated backyard retreat. Encourage a young couple who may not have many resources of their own by providing an evening of dessert and fellowship. Older people may enjoy an afternoon snack of cake and lemonade, along with a chance to tell some stories about their lives. In this way, the new outdoor space becomes not only a peaceful haven for personal relaxation, but a place for fruitful ministry to others as well.
Southwest FurnitureSouthwest furniture offers a distinct style that reflects the attitude of the great southwest, which is comfort and class uniquely blended together. Known for its western flair with definite ethnic contributions, these furnishings are reserved for designs that characteristically speak of the warm climate, starry nights, and wide open spaces of the untamed west. One cannot visit the friendly ranches of Texas or the exotic desert mountain dwellings of New Mexico without wanting to incorporate this distinct flavor of design into their own homes by purchasing southwest furniture and accessories. Those wanting to find these pieces may have to make a trip south, but with the popularity of these designs growing, more furniture distributors are adding these styles to their showroom floors all over the country.
There have been many cultural influences throughout the western and southern United States. A curious mix of Spanish missions, Mexican foods, and American Indian craftsman ship permeate the entire area, and these influences show up in many forms, including home furnishings. Western furniture tends to be dominated by heavy and rough woods that are fashioned together with primitive nails or large brass tackings. Leathers and suedes are also characteristic of the western flair, reminiscent of cattle herds and horse ranches. Traveling a little further west, the southwest furniture becomes a little smaller in scale, but every bit as earthy as the authentic Texas pieces. Classic southwest offers a blend of contemporary lines with texture, texture, texture. The combination is fantastic and perfectly depicts the modern, yet love of primitive, lifestyle found there.
And when considering a southwestern look as decor, before purchasing pieces from the western furniture collections, it may be a good idea to decide about color. The home color pallets found in homes that feature the mood of the west are extremely important. You won't find pink on many ranch walls. When thinking of the open plains and the wild, wild, west, visions of rusty reds, midnight blues, dawning grays, and earthen browns fill the head. With the larger scale of ranch style funishings, colors will need to be strong and independent, not intimidated by the statement of the furnishings. On the other hand, the true southwestern decor leans a little softer. Turquoise, the signature color of the southwest, brings a hint of desert jewels to the landscape - or roomscape. Colors that are perfect companions for southwest furniture are the reds and terra-cottas found in earthen clay and the vibrant yellows and purples that characterize western sunrises and sunsets.
There are not many formal ranch or southwest furniture pieces to choose from. The western motif leans towards casual and durable. One can't plop their cowboy boots on a glass coffee table, now can they? These rugged pieces are made for wear and tear and demonstrate their sturdiness in their heavy lines and broad bases. While some pieces can dress up nicely, for the most part, casual is the code for both ranch style and southwest furniture selections. This leans true for even formal dining room pieces that are used more as gatherings spots than formal sit down dinners. But don't think for one minute that you don't have to dress up for special dinner parties just because the decor is ranch-hand friendly. Texans and other southerners are quite comfortable in black tie and diamonds while sitting on cedar. The odd combinations are full of charm.
Typically, furniture stores of all sizes across the United States carry selections that can be characterized as pieces from the southwest. But, taking a trip down south will yield a much bigger selection of authentic western furniture pieces. There are craftsmen that make furniture with the south in mind and there are numerous importers that bring in pieces from Mexico. But, if travel is not a possibility, the Internet can take you there virtually, and to suppliers that will be more than happy to obliged. Just don't forget about those pesky shipping fees, ya hear!
The decor found in the southern and western states has evolved based on the cultural influences spoken of earlier, but truly the beauty of the land found there has been the biggest contributing factor to the style that has outlasted trends. Wide open skies, colorful canyons, desert blooms, and snow peaked mountains inspire elegance that is like no other. We can thank God when we are exposed to such gorgeous miracles in creation. The Bible teaches that God is the artist that not only penned the perfect Law, provided the perfect way to salvation, but also created the perfect beauty found in nature. "Drop down, ye heavens, from above, and let the skies pour down righteousness: let the earth open and let them bring forth salvation, and let righteousness spring up together; I the Lord have created it." (Isaiah 45:8) Go ahead and buy that southwestern furniture, but let it serve to remind you that it was God's creative sense of style that influenced that grand piece!