What is the first thing you think when you hear people say resin outdoor furniture or ‘PVC’ patio furniture? Is it white, nasty, cheap or flimsy? Then you’re not alone…
However, synthetic plastic garden is having some what of a revival in the outdoor furniture industry and many of the latest must have trends are constructed from PVC.
Today’s manufacturers are designing resin and plastic patio furniture in such a way that it now closely resembles natural wicker or painted wood. And all at fraction of the cost of the real thing.
Advancements in production mean that patio furniture manufacturers are now utilising what is known as HDPE, a high density version of polyethylene plastic. It is a very hard, durable, and heavy plastic resin that has been purified and UV protected.
Another popular material is EnviroWood, which is basically a synthetic wood substitute that’s made from 100% recycled plastic bottles and containers. So the end result is garden furniture that’s not only stylish but good for the environment too. Double win!
Modern production techniques mean that resin outdoor furniture is now permeated with UV stabilised colouring that is consistent throughout. Its now designed for comfort and to last, it can withstand the sun, rain, snow, even chlorine and saltwater.
No need to paint or sand your plastic or resin garden furniture or apply a treatment seasonally as you do with timber. It does not rot, warp, crack or splinter. And because the furniture has solid colour throughout, you can leave your plastic garden furniture outside all year-round and it won’t fade.
With such outstanding features, it is no wonder that people are getting sold on modern plastic and resin patio furniture. Not to mention that some of the most innovative designs are being constructed from modern synthetic plastics.
Most of today’s plastic furniture manufacturers, if not all, are now using stainless steel or cast aluminium hardware in their construction process too. The hardware used has a high level of corrosive resistance that complements the already unique nature of the furniture, thus allowing you to leave it outside year-round.
Plus, the solid, heavy-duty construction keeps all furniture made of recycled plastic or resin in your garden and not scattered across your lawn when the wind picks up. However, it is still light enough to pick up and move around your patio or garden without breaking your back…
Plastic garden furniture is appealing on so many different levels. Take this table and chair set by More Design (above). To Lazy Susan this represents the best use of plastic. Pushing the boundaries to create innovative outdoor furniture.
It is everything it should be: futuristic, compact, unusual, light-hearted – and not to mention durable.
The colour is fully customisable to whatever you want, plus the table and four chairs can be made in different colours to great effect. The moulded plastic chairs are both comfortable and spacious. And the tip of the iceberg for us, has to be the lighting kit that is available for the base.
These superb outdoor armchairs are produced by www.scab.it and are available to purchase online. Known as the Super Jenny, the chairs are made from recyclable polypropylene with ananodised aluminium legs.
Available in a range of colours including lemon green, blue, anthracite, linen, orange, red and light grey. They’re very comfy with no need of cushions, perfect for a little after BBQ relaxation at the dinner table.
From a design point of view, just look at the super cool Topol Table in the photo above (shown in the leaf colour) and the white de Luge sunbed from outdoor furniture innovators Loll Designs.
Using recycled plastics, responsibly manufactured, they’ve created stylish resin outdoor furniture that doesn’t require sanding or repainting. Featuring concealed screw holes that keep the lines of the furniture clean and sleek, you’ll have to look hard to find a smarter outdoor furniture range.
And if you need a pop of colour indoors or out, this over-the-top throne might suit your fancy. Made of recyclable linear polyethylene, it is UV resistant and available in 11 different (some pretty wild I may add) colours. Made in Italy, these sophisticated-looking pieces just don’t look like outdoor furniture as we know it.
If you don’t want to go overboard with the styling and colour, then you can simply create a sense of the outdoor room by placing two chairs or two sofas opposite each other. These white bubble polythene sofa’s by Philippe Starck for Kartell are fantastic. Available from the Lifestyle Bazaar.
If you’re shopping for outdoor furniture, then you might also want to consider this reinterpretation of the American classic Adirondack chair. Made from 100% recycled polyethylene, it’ll stand up to the British weather with no maintenance and it’s fully recyclable as well.
Greg Benson and Jeff Taly of Loll Designs (who really are leading the plastic outdoor furniture field) have taken the time-tested shape of the Adirondack Chair and made it out of 100% recycled polyethylene.
The material is fade-resistant, waterproof and maintenance free. It is Loll’s philosophy that “using green products should not mean you have to sacrifice anything; it should be better in every way than its non-eco-friendly counterpart”.
I’m also a big fan of this minimal cube bench and Table by Heller. It is available in three colors, light grey, dark grey or white. Lella and Massimo needed casual furniture for their new home near Sorrento, Italy, so they designed a multipurpose indoor/outdoor grouping ideal for home, hospitality and office environments.
Constructed from one piece of roto molded polymer, it is simple, but at the same time stunning.