With longer days and warmer temperatures on the horizon, it's time to give your outdoor space a facelift. Here are a few ideas—all of them from Canadian retailers—that work just as well on condo-sized patios, decks, and front porches.
Seemingly crafted for Vancouver’s increasingly tight patio spaces, EQ3’s (2536 Granville Street) outdoor dinette ($1,695) doesn’t skimp on the style despite its surprisingly compact shape.
The sleek set, which boasts a design inspired by coastal architecture, seats four comfortably, and, thanks to its lightweight aluminum construction, can easily be moved once your summer soiree becomes standing-room-only. The teak accents are a nice West Coast touch, too.
Kicking back solo? With its adjustable back and convenient casters, the Canadian retailer’s outdoor chaise ($699)—from the same pristine-white Cape collection—was practically made for lazy afternoons in the sun.
> Lucy Lau
Get the patio party started with Pillow Fight Factory’s new outdoor collection. Made by hand with waterproof cases, the cheery array includes a setting sun, a pink flamingo, and a rainbow-hued Happy, available against crisp white or grey. There are also some on-trend grey appliqués, including a chic heart and a peace sign.
But our favourites are the ones that get right to the point: the simple word tequila in margarita-lime green against white, or, depending on your taste in tipples, a pair of grey versions emblazoned with gin and tonic, respectively.
Each Vancouver-made design has an insert that’s washable, hypoallergenic, and mildew-proof ($89 to $109 at the Pillow Fight Factory website.
> Janet Smith
Strength and style
Patio furniture doesn’t get much sleeker than the Dodeka line, a Victoria-designed collection that conceals innovative touches beneath its thick foam and modular metal frames. The rust-proof aluminum frames come with a lifetime guarantee, in powder grey, satin black, clean white, and other hues.
The flow-through foam prevents water retention, and it’s mould- and mildew-resistant. Resist a neutral and go for a strong matador red or Aruba teal for the fabric. Check out Premise, Lemma, and Fugue styles at retailers like Patio and Home Direct (250 East 5th Avenue).
> Janet Smith
See ya, flamingos; hello, toucans. The folks at the Real Canadian Superstore (various locations) are predicting the big-beaked bird is going to be a hot décor trend this summer—printing a cheeky illustration of the tropical animal on everything from gold-rimmed glassware to plush beach towels.
The toucan features heavily in the retailer’s outdoor tropical collection, which runs the gamut from cups and bowls to oversized serving trays. The best part? Each alfresco-friendly piece (from $2.50) in the line is crafted from eco-conscious bamboo fibre, so you can extend your Earth-saving habits outdoors.
> Lucy Lau