My Outdoor Furniture Dilemma

I like to browse the HGTV Design Happens blog every now and again for home improvement ideas, and this time around, I ran across a post titled, “Daily Delight: Lightweight Concrete Furniture.” I am completely in love.

As it turns out, this gorgeous outdoor furniture design by Zachary A. Design only looks heavy. But as pointed out in the post, it’s “light enough to be moved by a toddler.” It is made from a combination of fiberglass and coarse sand, so it’s light enough to move yourself, but heavy enough to withstand the East Tennessee breezes we get to experience oh so frequently.

I’m not going to buy the furniture (at least right now), so you’re probably wondering why I’m even writing about it. Well, besides the fact that I would absolutely love to put this furniture set on my deck if I had a few extra dollars in my pocket (the price points, according to The New York Times, are $800 for the chair to the right in the photo and $900 for the chair to the left in the photo), just even looking at this furniture reminds me of a recent dilemma Todd and I have experienced with respect to our deck furniture.

After we tore down our old deck and built a new one, Todd’s grandparents decided they wanted to give us their old patio furniture. It’s the wrought iron kind that just needed a few cushions to be complete. Well, that and a couple coats of black spraypaint to cover up some rust. It had just been sitting in an outside storage building and wasn’t being used by them, so we graciously accepted the gift and got to purchasing cushions for it. Todd’s mom and I actually went around looking for cushions to put on the furniture. I never, ever realized how expensive cushions are! It wouldn’t be that bad if you only had to buy one of the full-size cushions, but we needed six! Ouch!

We got everything set up outside, and it looked great. Our sweet doggies were in Heaven with the cushions. Here’s a picture of Bella laying on the cushions one day when we had to bring them in before the rain:

Notice the old kitchen flooring!

About a year went by before the dogs realized the cushions were more fun to destroy than to lay on. Todd and I were both working full time, so during the day, the dogs stay outside. However, in case there’s inclement weather or they just want to be cooled off, we have a doggy door where they can come into a portion of the garage. Todd built a 6×8 area for them to lay in, and we filled it with cedar chips. They absolutely love it.

Back on topic, now. So yes, they realized how fun it would be to tear a piece of the cushion, and spread all the stuffing all over the deck and the backyard. They started with two cushions. We couldn’t figure out why they would start doing this now, after an entire year of having the cushions out there. Evidently they were bored while we were gone. So a couple weeks later, Todd went to Lowe’s to buy two more cushions. We thought, hey, this has got to be a fluke. They won’t do it again!

Wrong.

One by one, the dogs destroyed all the cushions. We didn’t want to take them off to punish them because, heck, then it would be punishing us, too! Todd and I love to go outside and just sit by the fireplace.

To make a long story even longer, we simply gave up on the old set and bought a couple chairs that didn’t require cushions this time around! The best part is that they were less than $30 a piece at Ross. Todd’s mom had some extra lounge chairs she had bought for her pool, so she gave us two of her extras, too. As you can tell, Bella is already loving them. Either that, or she’s being extra mischievous in planning out her next attack on the chairs.

Now we can enjoy our fireplace on cool nights without worrying about destroyed cushions. If these new chairs somehow become destroyed, does anyone want two dogs?? Kidding, just kidding! :-)

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