Even with our dubious weather, there are just enough blessed warm and windless days to take the garden seriously as an outdoor room.
This year sees the triumph of outdoor/ indoor furniture, a brave enthusiasm for cooking out on the patio stones, and a sense of decorating the garden to the very nines. Whether you have a few metres of sunny wall to balance your entertaining upon, or a comfortable expanse of hard landscaping — it’s almost time to come out and play.
Melamine and plastic might do for rough housing, but get out some proper flatware and glass for those special occasions. Lay on the tropical bling with golden forks and palm print linens, new from House of Frasers much feted Linea line.
Those high windowsills and high slung flower baskets can be neatly handled in impressive style with the Vivero watering can. ?102 in solid brass, aprilandthebear.com
Fancy a tipple? This drinks cart is perfect for food or refreshment rumbled to a lounger or doing duty at a larger table. Look out for 1960s tea trolleys for an authentic take on this tipsy notion. Gold Cocktail Trolley, ?433.75, Sisters Guild.
Longing for more room, and not ready to extend? Go beyond the shed into the wonderful world of fully serviced and insulated garden buildings. Their uses are as diverse as your highly personal needs. They can function as a homework room for older children, an art or music studio, garden cinema room or a blessed retreat room for every member of the family. Garden offices should not be intended as habitable overnight buildings for any long term use. Find something under 40m that is technically mobile, and planning permission may not be required. Wood finishes have a natural affinity with planted surroundings. Image: Ecos Ireland (Trim, Co.Meath), ecospace.ie.
Taken from the French verb- frou frouter (to rustle) this gorgeous and dynamic piece recalls exotic white beaches and Club Med? price tags. It features a rich under-skirt of wind blown raffia attached to a polyester support in white, black or green by designer Davy Grosemans for Sywawa. 250cm across. ?2279, Jardinchic.net
The power of paint extends to the outdoors. A harlequin set of folding metal chairs gathered to any raw wooden table not only looks great, but can be suspended from a hook on a fence when you need to clear the patio for maintenance or dancing. Choose the right product for the surface and prep? as instructed for good adhesion. Ronseal Garden Paint adds colour to wood, brick, terracotta and metal. It also protects from the weather and resists colour fade. ?24.99 for 2.5l, suppliers include Woodies DIY. The LazyRezt hanging chair in cotton with wood 110cm spreader support your dreams from a tree limb or indoor joist. Choose from a range of Native American designs in the fabrics. Priced from ?79, with decorative covers for ?9.50 for 1, and 2 extras for ?19. If you don?t have a suitable suspension point, order a stand from ?129 for multiple uses including conventional hammocks. Maranonhammocks.ie