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Be our guest

Be our guest

Make the most of summer’s last days and move the party outdoors with these entertaining node ideas.

Dark desirables

1. At last year’s Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show, Australian landscaping firm Acre Studio walked away with third prize in the Landscaping Victoria Boutique Garden category for its minimalist entry ‘Avant-Garden’. Designer Brett Robinson says that he wanted the entry to show that hardy gardens and small spaces can still be soft and calming. We love the contemporary look created by the use of charcoal and dark-grey materials such as the compressed-cement sheet cladding the back wall that looks and feels like polished concrete, as well as the black Hee Easy Chair by Danish furniture design firm Hay, all juxtaposed with the light timber, greenery and rippling water feature.

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New-age protective finishes ensure that indoor-styled furniture taken outside isn’t battered by the weather


Best seat in the house

Interior-styled furniture designed for the outdoors is a trend that continues to dominate, whether in styling, fabric or form, and statement seating is a great way to set your space apart.

2. The Siesta outdoor sofa by Spanish design company Andreu World has been created to fit as comfortably into a living room as on an outdoor deck. It owes its adaptability for the outdoors to a treatment known as EPL-5, a cutting-edge formula similar to that used in boats and cars which provides protection from the elements. The cushions are also available in outdoor fabric. Andreu World products can be ordered locally through Tonic Design.

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3. We love the contrast of the bright colours and organic shape of Paola Lenti’s Otto outdoor seat, typical of the playful yet contemporary aesthetic of this range. Made from the designer’s signature material, Rope Corda 10, comprised of 100% polyolefin and created for outdoor use, it’s available locally through the Modern Home Company.

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4. As the first range of products to come from the Dedon Island Resort in the Philippines, the Swingrest, designed by the resort’s co-architect Daniel Pouzet for the luxury furniture brand Dedon, is the evolution of the brand’s much-loved Nestrest range. Both ranges have woven basket-like bases and are designed to be suspended from the ceiling. The Swingrest is available locally through Canetime.

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5. The Asian Traveler Chair by designer Stephen Burks for French furniture company Roche Bobois is part of his range of Traveler designs. This piece is made from materials suited to the outdoors in a fun, summery palette of primary colours.

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Switched on

Creating ambience throughout an outdoor node is becoming more sophisticated, thanks to technological advances in outdoor lighting materials, LEDs and solar power.

6. Although not specifically designed for the outdoors, the intricately cut and shaped glass of the Ginger glass pendants by Edmondo Testaguzza for Italian lighting design company Karman create a rippling effect when natural light strikes them – creating a warm and moody indoor atmosphere, outdoors. They’re available locally through the Modern Home Company. For a similar effect, consider K Light Import’s Dimpled Amber Glass Pendants.

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7. With their woven multicoloured cord structure, the Agadir floor and table lanterns by Paola Lenti aren’t only visually appealing but are up there in the tech stakes too. The LED bulbs are powered by batteries chargeable through any USB port and can last up to six hours. The lanterns are available locally through the Modern Home Company.

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8. Gathering at the fireside, whether it’s to cook food, share a meal or simply tell stories, is a tradition that extends throughout humanity, across time and around the globe. Bringing it into the 21st century in an utterly stylish way are Ana Mir and Emili Padrós of Spanish design studio Emiliana, with their Fire Pit Zig Zag for Spanish outdoor furniture company Kettal. The simple aluminium form makes it perfectly suited to most styles and outdoor-node aesthetics. It’s available locally through Marlanteak.

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9. Suspending an ornate chandelier over an outdoor dining table is the epitome of bringing the inside out. In this Hollywood Hills home by Xten Architecture, the dramatic light fitting creates a romantic ambience and LED or solar-powered bulbs mean no fuss over wiring.

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Mood lighting can be provided by an open flame or a choice of bulbs – cordless thanks to technology



Fit a vintage chandelier with solar-powered fairy lights to create a similar effect. For solar-powered fairy lights try Future Light or Calasca.


Living Alfresco

Spending time outdoors has evolved into a multifaceted experience that in many instances includes cooking too. As a result, these spaces need to facilitate various activities as well as protect against the weather.

10. This Ibiza home designed by London-based interior specialist Caroline Legrand is a fusion of beach-house chic and 1970s style. Natural materials such as the indigenous Sabina wood, Filipino fishing-basket lamps and vintage rattan chairs at either end of the dining table provide a multi-textured finish, while casual, mismatched seating accommodates flexible numbers.

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11. Shutters are an excellent way to create an outdoor room that’s versatile in terms of its level of exposure to the elements. These folding and sliding track shutters from Plantation Shutters in matt silk grey give this outdoor space an indoor level of sophistication and blend beautifully into the colours of the Ballito coastline.

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Contact details


Text: Genevieve Putter
Photographs: Art Gray, Michael Paul and supplied



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