Outdoor Seating - Ideas and Chair Types

By Bailiegh Basham · January 11, 2023

Outdoor Seating - Ideas and Chair Types

Whether you own a porch, a deck, a balcony, or a sweeping backyard, your choice of seating impacts your ability to make the most of your corner of nature. The Countryside Amish Furniture team wrote this piece to help you understand the different types of outdoor chairs available, what factors to consider when making your purchase, and provide inspiration.


Types of Outdoor Chairs

Adirondack chairs - This is the ultimate outdoor chair in which to relax with a drink in hand and a beautiful view outstretched in front. Though fitting in a number of different settings, Adirondack-style seating may feel more at home in a yard than perched on a porch. Circle them around a fire pit, face them towards the garden, or position them near the children’s favorite playspot as a seating option for supervising adults. The wide arms can serve double duty as a resting spot for beverages for a small plate of food. 

However, Adirondack chairs may not work for every person and every household. For starters, the seat is fairly close to the ground, potentially making it difficult for individuals with reduced mobility to get in and out. Plus, it has a larger footprint than some of the other types of outdoor chairs, and it doesn’t collapse when not in use, meaning that it may not work for tiny spaces. Lastly, it is not conducive to eating around a table.

 

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Outdoor lounge chair - A close cousin of the Adirondack style, this type of seating is also referred to as a chaise. This purchase is best when surrounded by nature or poolside rather than on a patio. While it’s great for relaxing with a book in hand or reclining for an afternoon nap, it’s not practical seating for mealtime or for encouraging socializing. For more tips specific to the pool, read Pool Patio Chair and Furniture Ideas.

 

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Outdoor rocking chairs and gliders - One look at our Amish-crafted inventory, and it’s immediately obvious that rocking chairs are surprisingly diverse. Let’s start off with the movement of this outdoor chair, itself. While some seats rock, others can glide or swivel. They also can take on a classic appearance or a more contemporary feel, all aided by your choice of product and the chosen colors.

 

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Patio dining chairs - This type of seating covers a broad range, from bar stools to benches to chairs that look similar to traditional dining chairs. Some tips when finding the right dining set: 

  • Not sure the ideal table size for your friends and family? Read the Complete Guide to Dining Table Seating Capacity.
     
  • When measuring your outdoor area for the optimal set-up, don’t forget to factor in the extra space needed when diners pull their chairs out from the table, as well as the necessary space to walk to reach the seats in the first place.  
     
  • As is true for indoor seating, your outdoor dining chairs should mirror one another for a synchronized look. Additionally, think of how they’ll look paired alongside your chosen table.
     
  • If you seek to set up dining seating for the lawn, consider an Amish-crafted picnic table.

 

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Porch swings -  Rounding out our list of various types of outdoor chairs are porch swings. They’re fun and a classic of the American household. But don’t pull the trigger just yet on purchasing a porch swing. Firstly, remember that you’ll need to make space not only for the dimensions of the seating but also for the extra room for when it swings (we recommend four feet behind to ensure that no one accidentally swings into a wall).

 

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The Type of Material for Your Outdoor Chairs Matter

As we explain in The Best Outdoor Wood Furniture, no natural hardwood can compete with top-grade poly lumber and its ability to withstand prolonged exposure to the elements. Despite being a composite of recycled plastics, it does a superb job of mimicking the texture and weight of real wood. For this reason, Countryside Amish Furniture decided to have all pieces crafted using this particular material. 

The accompanying cushions are also an important element when custom ordering your outdoor seating, as there are certain types of fabrics and materials well-suited for exposure to the weather. For instance, take Sunbrella® - not only are they crafted from recycled materials, but they’re specifically engineered for lasting durability, easy cleaning, inherent resistance to mold, and backed by a 5-year warranty. What’s more, their colors are less likely to fade despite ongoing exposure to UV rays meaning that they’ll help your outdoor seating maintain a like-new appearance.


Other Considerations When Getting Ideas for Outdoor Seating

The intended use of your outdoor seating and for whom (and how many) - Envision the circumstances under which your seating would be utilized, as this will dictate your preferred type of outdoor chair. After all, it’ll be much more difficult to serve dinner to guests if they’re all perched in Adirondack chairs. 

How much sun and shade you’d want to receive - how you arrange your outdoor seating is almost as impactful as the types of chairs themselves. For example, if you plan on bringing your laptop outside to work on your patio, you’ll want to arrange your chair so your computer screen doesn’t receive too much of a glare. 

Your preferred aesthetic - Opt for seating that is natural shades of brown, and you’ll have a rustic look that blends in with the surrounding nature. Order that same outdoor chair in crisp white and blue, and suddenly it feels contemporary and beachy. There really is no singular correct color palette for your seating; just remember to coordinate from a cohesive outdoor set or else your furniture will come across as directionless and half-haphazardly thrown together. 

Your furniture storage options during rough weather - Whether you’re confronting major storms or cold winters, you’ll need to store your outdoor furniture indoors sooner or later. It’s smart to plan how to do so before making your purchase so you don’t accidentally buy too many pieces that you won’t be able to stash inside. 

Add-ons that could enhance your outdoor seating - Check out our outdoor accessories to see all types of footrest options (ottomans, footstools, etc.). Other products in this section include serving bars, fire pits, and umbrella stands.  

Whether you need to have a wind-contingency plan - Lighter pieces made from aluminum, wicker, or cheap plastic are more likely to blow away than pieces with some natural heft (like those made from poly lumber). In this case, you may want to only bring out the chairs outdoors when they’re in use or find a way to tie them down.

 

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Whatever Type of Outdoor Chair You Choose, Countryside Amish Furniture Has You Covered

Three things you must know about Countryside Amish Furniture:

  • We make all outdoor seating to order - this means you can choose the color of the frame and cushions (if available), as well as often select from multiple sizing choices. We do our best to make the ordering process as smooth as possible, from sending samples to having our sales team readily available via live chat. To learn more, we suggest reading Custom Design Solid Wood, Amish-Made Furniture.
     
  • We use materials of the highest caliber and specifically intended for outdoor use - Our Amish craftsmen use top-quality poly lumber and fabrics to build outdoor chairs and accompanying pieces that can withstand ongoing exposure to UV rays, rain, and most anything else Mother Nature throws their way. 
     
  • We are a family-operated company with strong Amish connections - Yes, it’s true Amish artisans that will craft your outdoor seating. This means that each piece is individually crafted using time-tested techniques and undergoes much more scrutiny to ensure lasting quality. The end resulting outdoor chair will be a far cry from your typical discount furniture. To learn more, read What Goes Into the Cost of Amish Furniture and Why It’s Worth the Expense

Have additional questions about which type of outdoor chairs to choose? Reach out to our team, and we’ll assist you however we can.

 

 

Author, Baileigh Basham

Bailiegh Basham is Lead Sales & Marketing Strategist at Countryside Amish Furniture. She's been a team member since 2014. Bailiegh is deeply passionate about furniture design and home decor.