Modern furniture has gone on a diet. Forget chunky reclaimed wood tables and fat, downy-soft sofas. The lamps, tables and room dividers getting all the attention at New York Design Week looked as if they’d been literally ripped out of an artist’s sketchpad.
It was a two-dimensional world at the NYDW International Contemporary Furniture Fair. Linear products included “chairs with thin, angular forms; lamps that looked as if they were drawn by a pen; and tables with contours so spare and strong that they are best described as graphic,” writes Julie Lasky in an article for The Wall Street Journal.
The line-drawing quality is not accidental. Graphic designer, illustrator and furniture designer Todd St. John said his room divider stemmed from his desire to translate his drawings into physical objects. He used slim rods of solid brass to create an open, multi-angled divider that looks too thin to stand on its own.
Can you bring this ultra-thin furniture look to your backyard this summer? Should you?
The dividing line between indoor and outdoor furniture has already been crossed. Sunbrella entered the market by upholstering great room furniture with its waterproof (and theoretically kid-proof) fabric. And, as more and more modern homes include transparent walls, sophisticated homeowners want to achieve a cohesive look among all “rooms” in their home.
The trend toward slim furniture stems from the popularity of glass-walled architecture, which dissolves the boundary between indoors and out, Cara McCarty, curatorial director at the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, said in an interview with The Wall Street Journal.
Think Thin with these Spare Luxury Outdoor Furniture Designs:
1. Pearson Greek Key Coffee Table
This stunning coffee table by Pearson may not hold up to summer storms and sprays of ocean salt. But, if you have a covered space in your backyard, the Pearson Greek Key Coffee Table adds a touch of slim elegance to any setting.
Bonus: it’s easy to clean!
2. Horchow Octagonal Table
The glass-topped table by Horchow looks fabulous indoors, but its base of handcrafted galvanized metal makes it sturdy enough for outdoor use.
And it has a rustic look without the rustic drawbacks: splinters!
3. Michael Berman’s Marin collection for Brown Jordan
Michael Berman’s Marin collection for Brown Jordan proves that minimalism and comfort are not incompatible.
The outdoor chairs, tables and sofas boast clean lines. And the thick cushions invite you and your guests to linger over cocktails.
The Marin collection – and drinks – could also be taken indoors.
4. Frontgate Grayson Rectangular Dining Table and Chairs
The lattice design of Frontgate’s Grayson collection dining set is composed of 100% ingot aluminum, a premium raw form of the metal.
The simple design is elegant, but understated. This means that the gourmet dinner you cook on your luxury outdoor grill will get all the attention it deserves.
The table and chairs clean easily with soap and water. Anyone living near saltwater may wish to protect the furniture with automotive wax.
5. Agio Fire Pit
A gorgeous fire pit? Sounds like an oxymoron. But Agio makes more than a dozen portable fire pits that you’ll wish you could take indoors.
Want some comfort to go with the fire? Agio’s Kolea collection includes a fire pit, sofa and built-in bar. You might just park yourself there for the entire summer and only grudgingly return to your indoor furniture after Labor Day.
Do you like the spare designs for luxury outdoor furniture? Or do you long for the days when outdoor loungers were so overstuffed that, once seated, you couldn’t get out of them without help?
Please let us know what you think about summer’s luxury outdoor furniture trends. And if you love or hate your current luxury outdoor furniture, please load a picture of it and post a Revuu.