Sourcing the best outdoor furniture for your backyard or balcony is a surefire way to increase your enjoyment of time spent alfresco. Whether you’re looking for an outdoor dining set, a sectional sofa to kick back and relax on, or a compact bistro set, it'll offer practicality and, with the right designs, extra style points for your space, too.
But where should you start the search for the best patio furniture? After all, from timeless wicker patio sets to wooden outdoor benches, outdoor furniture can come with a high price tag. And as it's such an investment, you'll want your pieces to last.
To help narrow down the search, we've compiled a directory of the Gardeningetc team's favorite stores to source stylish, durable, and practical patio furniture – for a range of budgets. We've also included some of our editor's top picks, including a chic and sustainable outdoor armchair from Outer and designer dupes from Target.
Get scrolling and uncover your new favorite place to perch when the sun is out. And, once you've sorted your seating, don't forget to check out our guides to the best grills for alfresco cooking, and our best hot tub page to create the ultimate backyard retreat.
Best outdoor furniture stores: where to shop
Why you can trust Gardeningetc
Outer has a mission statement that seeks to turn the statistic that the average American spends 90% of their day indoors on its head, and they're starting by ensuring we can all sit alfresco comfortably. What's more, they want to ensure that that doesn't come at the cost of the environment. The brand's contemporary PE-wicker outdoor sofa collection contains recycled materials, whilst its hardwearing aluminum and teak collections are built to withstand the elements, offering longevity of design to keep products out of landfills.
Editor's pick: Brown Wicker Outdoor Armchair
Target has gone all-in on this year's patio furniture collection which features some super contemporary – and super affordable – looks to update your backyard with all the latest trends. Think laidback coastal-inspired lounge sets, modern statement designs, minimal metal furniture with an industrial edge, Southwest-inspired wicker patio furniture, plus, some great collaborations with interior design studio Studio McGee. It's worth moving fast if you spy something you like though, as, at Target's prices, statement pieces tend to sell out fast.
Combining contemporary design with affordable price points, we're big fans of Castlery's always on-trend approach to furniture and decor, and the brand's outdoor collection proves just as strong as its indoor range this season. Modular sectional sofas and modern patio dining sets score big on style, with more lines due to hit down as the year unfolds.
Editor's pick: Sorrento Lounge Chair Set
If you're looking for luxe outdoor furniture to invest in to turn your outside space into a relaxation or entertaining zone worthy of a five-star retreat, then Arhaus has plenty of wow-factor designs to choose from. Think super spacious and contemporary sectional sofas and soiree-ready dining sets, all crafted from durable hardwoods or rust-resistant aluminum that will weather the elements as well as the brand's timeless designs weather the trends.
Editor's pick: Naxos Outdoor Seven Piece Sectional
5. Joss & Main
Particularly good for wooden outdoor furniture, Joss & Main's patio furniture collection strikes just the right balance between classic and contemporary, offering a great selection of timeless outdoor pieces. There are also some great modern interpretations of wicker outdoor sectionals and dining sets, with simple shapes and strong silhouettes that will work in a whole host of styles of backyard.
Editor's pick: Panthea Outdoor Acacia Chaise Lounge
You might have to search a little to find the best buys, but if there's anywhere that's guaranteed to have outdoor furniture that's ready to shop and at some of the lowest prices you're likely to find, then it's Amazon. And with brands like Safavieh opening online storefronts on the platform, there are an increasing number of on-trend products to discover. Plus, if you want patio furniture fast, then Amazon Prime's next-day delivery service is hard to compete with.
Editor's pick: Yangming 3 Piece Bistro Set
Well-loved by interior designers and architects, Horne curates homeware that you may not find easily elsewhere, including a wide array of European brand names, and plenty of outdoor statement pieces. We're particular fans of its range of stylish outdoor ping pong tables, but there's also handcrafted Danish design in the Skagerak outdoor collection and curvaceous wicker options from Cane Line.
Editor's pick: Cane Line Nest 2-Seater Outdoor Sofa
8. Birch Lane
If you're looking for classic outdoor design at reasonably affordable price points, then Birch Lane's outdoor furniture collection is a great place to start. The brand's collection of timeless wicker sectional sofas, classic outdoor dining sets, and decorative bistro sets are well worth a browse. Plus, there are frequent sales on offer, which could mean that you're able to snap up a bargain.
Editor's pick: Leandra 5 Piece Rattan Sectional Seating Group with Cushions
Anthropologie offers an eclectic mix of outdoor furniture, including own brand designs, and a carefully curated selection of independent brands; think pretty wicker bistro sets and statement bohemian peacock chairs. However, it's outdoor accessories where the retailer really comes into its own, delivering brightly patterned outdoor cushions that will give a tired patio set a new lease of life, and focal-point Tropicana-inspired side tables.
Editor's pick: Business & Pleasure Co. Tommy Beach Chair
This season saw Lowe's introduce its first exclusive modern home décor line, Origin21, which offers a clean, modern look mixed with warm colors and natural elements. Including minimalist, mid-century modern, and Japandi influences, the collection extends into the outdoor furniture arena, making it easy to modernize your outside area at some unexpectedly affordable prices.
Editor's pick: Style Selections Aluminium Patio Bench
11. McGee and Co.
They're investment pieces, but McGee and Co.'s outdoor furniture has the same timeless appeal as its indoor collection, hitting just the right balance between classic and contemporary to achieve modern heirloom status. The patio collection includes pared-back teak chairs and outdoor dining tables, wicker lounge sets with just the right amount of simple detail to elevate your backyard set-up, and relaxed cocoon-shaped hanging chairs for cozying up.
Editor's pick: Elowyn Outdoor chair
Focusing on wicker, teak, and aluminum materials, Frontgate's outdoor furniture collection is crafted to withstand the elements. Designs are classic, and perfect for a more formal outside space, offering everything you need to create an outside living room that's designed to impress.
Editor's pick: Carlisle Lounge Chair with Cushions
Offering a one-stop shop for hundreds of outdoor furniture brands, you're likely to find pretty much whatever you're looking for at this online destination store, with everything from anti-gravity deckchairs to rattan garden sets listed on its storefront. Just be aware that pricing and discounting can change on an almost daily basis, so if you find a good deal, it can be best to snap it up then and there rather than delay.
Editor's pick: Lark Manor Joliet Solid Wood 4-Person Seating Group
14. Design Within Reach
Pulling together collections from some of the best independent design houses, Design Within Reach focus on curating furniture which is built to last and designed to be passed on from generation to generation. We would happily look after the Terassi teak outdoor collection and give backyard space to the iconic Hay Palissade range with its minimal curves. Plus, the eco-credentials of the Loll Adirondack chairs – crafted from repurposed single-use plastic – are very hard to beat.
Editor's pick: Adirondack Lounge Chair
Scandinavian design house HAY's Palissade outdoor collection has become something of a modern classic, with the distinctive curved linear metal frames of its bench seat, dining table, and range of outdoor chairs working perfectly in large-scale public spaces as well as intimate private spaces. The collection is ideal for patios where you don't want to block a view of the planting or wish to enhance feelings of spaciousness with its airy design.
Editor's pick: Palissade Outdoor Dining Table and Bench Set
Modern design at some fairly competitive price points makes Article a great place to head if you're looking for contemporary outdoor furniture. As well as statement outdoor lounge chairs, the brand has plenty of modern and minimal corner sectionals and sleek outdoor dining sets on offer.
Editor's pick: Lubek Sectional Set
17. Lulu and Georgia
Perfectly blending rugged rustic style with contemporary elegance, Lulu and Georgia's outdoor collection is packed with timeless options for creating a relaxed yet stylish outdoor living area. Teak wood predominates, with natural textures and tones of woven jute and wicker contrasting with sculptural elements to create a showstopping patio.
Editor's pick: Carlita Indoor / Outdoor Chair
How to choose the best outdoor furniture for your outside space
In choosing the best outdoor furniture for your needs, you'll first want to consider how you prefer to use your outside space. Do you want to entertain large numbers of guests on your patio, create a family-friendly backyard, or create a space to relax and unwind amongst nature in relative solitude?
If you're blessed with plenty of space to play with, then you may want to create outdoor 'rooms' as you would with an interior. Add a patio table and chairs that are spacious enough to host the number of family and friends you would regularly entertain around a barbecue area in the 'outdoor dining' zone. Then, create a more relaxed, informal seating area with a corner sectional or lounge set as an 'outdoor living room', or add a bench to create a versatile year-round seating spot.
If space is more limited, then you may need to combine these patio furniture ideas in one area, in which case an outdoor lounge set that features an extendable height riser table can be a worthy investment, allowing you to easily transform your seating from a daytime coffee spot into an alfresco dining zone in the evening. Alternatively, a chaise sectional, or a seating option that comes with padded ottomans, will easily transform into a sun lounging space when the weather allows.
You'll want to consider size and scale before you start furniture shopping to make sure your chosen design fits your backyard ideas and isn't too large or too small. And, if space is truly at a premium, then options that fold away can help to maximize your square footage, with collapsible bistro sets offering a smart and versatile solution.
What type of outdoor furniture is the most durable?
Once you've decided on the type of patio furniture that will work best for your lifestyle, it's time to consider the best materials for outdoor furniture.
You can find an in-depth look at the differences in durability between each material in Gardeningetc's guide to 'Is outdoor furniture weatherproof?', but as a quick cheat sheet, we've summarized some of the key factors to consider when shopping each of the most common patio furniture materials below.
What's the best metal garden furniture to buy?
Whether you opt for a predominantly metal piece of outdoor furniture, or a wicker corner sectional or dining set for your patio, it's likely that metal will be used to create the base structure of the furniture design. Therefore, it's important to understand the differences in what's available.
The most affordable patio furniture tends to be made of powder-coated steel. Steel is highly corrosive when it comes into contact with water, so it's protected from the outdoor elements by way of powder-coating the surface with a protective paint barrier. This works, but means steel-based outdoor furniture is likely to have weak points at joints and fixings where moisture can penetrate and gradually form rust, and any chips in the paint surface will need repairing promptly to maintain durability. For this reason, it's generally recommended that steel-based rattan furniture is stored under cover during inclement weather, which isn't always easy if you're short on space. Plus, steel furniture can be very heavy to move.
Aluminum-framed outdoor furniture is by far the more durable option, as the metal itself forms a barrier that prevents moisture from penetrating the surface. It may still be powder-coated, but this is purely for aesthetic reasons rather than protection. For this reason, aluminum patio furniture can be left outside all year round, making it a super low-maintenance option (although most manufacturers will still recommend sheltering it from the worst of the elements to prolong its lifespan even further). However, this does mean aluminum-based outdoor furniture tends to be by far the more expensive option. The added durability can make it the most cost-effective and better value investment long term though.
What's the best type of wicker garden furniture?
One of the most popular outdoor furniture designs, wicker patio furniture offers a timeless look that blends with most garden styles.
Most modern 'wicker' or 'rattan' outdoor furniture is actually made of PE-rattan or polyrattan, a polyurethane plastic that offers the benefits of being lightweight, waterproof, weather-resistant, and low maintenance.
The key consideration in shopping for the best wicker outdoor furniture that your budget allows is the construction of the metal base frame that gives rattan furniture its support. As explained above, a powder-coated steel frame is likely to weather much faster than aluminum-framed wicker patio furniture, and steel-based wicker furniture is likely to need storing under shelter in inclement weather. However, aluminum-based rattan furniture will prove more of an initial investment.
Which wood is best for patio furniture?
You'll find wooden patio furniture made from many types of timber, but when shopping for the most durable wooden outdoor furniture, it's hardwoods that you'll want to look out for.
Teak is the hardwood most prized for its strength and durability outdoors. As well as offering an extremely dense grain that prevents moisture from penetrating, teak retains high levels of natural oils in its timber once cut, which further helps to prevent the wood from weathering. You can top up the wood with teak oil to offer even more weather resistance, although many allow the timber to weather over time to its signature soft silvery patina.
However, this dense grain is down to teak's extremely slow-growing habit, and that slow growth, plus the difficulty of working with such a tough timber makes it one of the most expensive wooden options.
Like many kinds of wood, teak is also in danger of being harvested unsustainably. Reclaimed teak wood can be a more eco-friendly solution, or, as when buying any wood product, make sure to look for FSC-certification which should ensure the tree has been felled within a managed forest rather than contributing to damaging deforestation.
Cheaper and faster-growing alternatives that are now becoming very popular outdoor furniture choices are the hardwoods acacia and eucalyptus. These woods may be slightly less dense than teak but they are far-quicker growing, allowing them to be grown and managed to yield greater quantities of wood more sustainably – although again, it's important to look for FSC accreditation. A little low-maintenance upkeep with a coat of wood preservative each year should ensure these hardwoods retain plenty of weather resistance.
If you're looking for durability, then try to avoid outdoor furniture that is simply listed as a 'wood' or timber' build, as it's more likely these options are crafted from less weather-resistant softwoods.
Can you leave garden furniture outside in the rain?
Some outdoor furniture, like options made from weather-resistant aluminum or hardwoods like teak, need very little maintenance to keep them looking their best and can be left outdoors all year round.
However, patio furniture made from powder-coated steel or softer hardwoods will need a little more TLC to prolong its lifespan. And, whatever option your budget allows, most manufacturers will still recommend that you store outdoor furniture under cover during the worst of the winter weather, whether that's in the garage or a storage shed, or at the very least under one of the best outdoor furniture covers.
If you're storing your garden furniture under a furniture cover then it's important to consider the material, as non-breathable options can still leave garden furniture at risk of mold. If storage space is limited, foldable dining chairs and tables can be a good option.
Plus, of course, it's not just your outdoor furniture that might need some shelter. If you're planning an alfresco gathering and gray clouds are looming, check out our guide to the best gazebos to ensure your party plans can continue whatever the weather.
For more insider knowledge on what to consider when garden furniture shopping, make sure to browse our top tips for choosing outdoor furniture article which considers color schemes, trends and more.
How we selected the best outdoor furniture stores
With a background in interior design, Amy has been sourcing design-led products for Livingetc, Homes & Gardens, Ideal Home and Gardeningetc for the past two years, helping the brand's audiences to furnish their dream interiors. For this guide, she turned her focus outdoors, rounding up the best outdoor furniture offerings taking into consideration both design and durability.
To round-up the best outdoor furniture stores for this list we tried and tested bestselling designs, dived into the specifications to sort the wheat from the chaff, grilled the wider Gardeningetc team for their expert knowledge on the best outdoor materials, and took into account third party reviews on retailer websites.
Find out more about how we review products on Gardeningetc.
After specialising in Textile Design for Interiors at Winchester School of Art, Amy spent many years working in the design and interior industries, including styling and visual merchandising for many well-known brands. She now writes for multiple interior publications, including Livingetc, Homes & Gardens, Ideal Home, and Real Homes to offer advice on creating a well-designed interior, whether that's choosing the perfect shade of paint, what to look for when investing in a new sofa, or sourcing on-trend and sustainable products for the home.
Amy joined the Gardeningetc team to bring her design knowledge outdoors, offering advice on what to consider when shopping for the best garden furniture, how to choose the ideal garden bench, and sourcing everything you need to create an outdoor living area that will become the perfect place to kick back and relax when the sun shines.
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