Our top 5 tips when designing your outdoor room.
Part 3: SHOPPING IS MY GAME!
So if you are like me, you like to shop. Let's face it, the rush of the adrenalin and the emotions that go hand in hand with spending money is enough to have me shopping every week! But I try to be good and only spend when I need to...
Little purchases are easy! There is not a lot of consideration that goes into buying something like storage containers or a new lamp. These purchases don't take up much of my time, money or thought.
But furniture on the other hand is an investment!
Furniture is not (and should not) be something you continue to buy every year or two for the rest of your life. Honestly, who wants to be buying a new table or lounge every year or 2??? Good furniture is an investment that should take some research, thought and emotion to decide upon.
You might be tempted to buy cheaper furniture to save yourself some money. But while this may be the case for the initial purchase, cheaper products often end up costing more over time. That’s because lower quality leads to quicker wear and tear. Chances are it won’t be long before your new piece is falling apart and needs to be replaced by another cheap item. This quickly adds up to more than the cost of one well-made piece of furniture, which, once bought, can last a lifetime. There are lay-by options or even finance if you want to spread the cost out over 2 years.
There is also the fact that cheap furniture generally looks cheap. While this might be an allowable compromise when you’re furnishing your very first apartment, it’s not the ideal aesthetic to maintain into adulthood. By investing in good quality and outdoors-proof furniture, you and your family can enjoy it every day, and you’ll feel proud of your home when you have visitors over.
But how do I know where to buy good quality?
If you asked yourself this question while reading the last paragraph, let me help you out. Good quality outdoor furniture needs to have many more features than indoor furniture, so there are questions you should be asking the sales person to get a gauge of the quality.
Questions such as:
- what is the frame made of?
- will the product rust?
- will the cushions fade?
- what happens if the furniture gets wet?
- can it handle the sunny weather?
- what is the warranty?
- is it strong and sturdy?
- is the store local so that you can go and try the furniture before you buy?
A store that can answer these questions will usually have a good reputation too. Their customer service should be pretty high and it would also be great if you could form a friendly relationship with the sales person. Sometimes it is nice to have a friendly ear and another set of eyes when you are making decisions.
Time for the cross-examination!
Right, let's get down to the shopping!!!
For the furniture to be right for you, it needs to pass a series of rigorous tests...
- Does the style suit your plan?
- Is it comfy, could you relax on it?
- Is it the right size for your zone? Not too big or small?
- Is it durable and sturdy?
- Is it weatherproof?
- Do the colours work with my plan, or does it come in other colours?
- Is the layout (or configuration) right? Can you change it?
- Is it child or pet friendly?
- Does the price sit right with you?
- Do you love it?
Once you have narrowed down the options and picked your favourites, it is time to be rewarded for all your hard work and put it on order!! Organise your pick up or delivery time and move on to Part 4 in the series for your next move.
Homework for this lesson is:
- Print the PDF
- Research some local stores and get a feel for what you have around
- Create a shortlist of furniture that you want to check out
- Go and visit the stores and try out the furniture for yourself
- Purchase the furniture
- Take it home or get it delivered
- Celebrate by moving on to Part 4 in the series