Why We Love Our Outdoor Spaces — and How to Make the Most of Yours
Our outdoor spaces feel like little sanctuaries to decompress and catch up with loved ones. Whether you’re working with a lush backyard, quaint patio, or communal rooftop, every sized space is precious. And the key to realizing your exterior’s potential? Finding the outdoor furniture that’s just right for your space.
Start by looking to experts who build stylish pieces for inside and outside the home. Castlery took their approach to timeless furnishings for bedrooms, living rooms, and dining rooms, and applied it to make beautiful, durable, and affordably priced outdoor pieces you can actually get excited about. Their furniture doesn’t just improve your outdoor space — it opens it up to new possibilities.
In our experience, a well-furnished exterior has been the setting for some of our best times with family and friends. Hear from three Apartment Therapy staffers about their favorite memories and connections made in their outdoor spaces, then start thinking about how to maximize your own great outdoors.
Castlery is also giving away a $2,000 voucher to furnish your outdoor space. Scroll for details!
Discover your own traditions
In 2020, AT’s Home Projects Editor Megan Baker moved cross-country with her husband to Madison, Wisconsin, where they both had roots. Moving into a new house, they didn’t know where to start with the yard.
“We were so excited to host overnight guests and my parents were so excited to spend time outside,” Megan says. The only problem? The yard was empty. After assembling a grill, table, and chairs, Megan and John made the most of the outdoor space they’d left New York to enjoy. “We spent the whole weekend outside drinking beer, eating burgers, and playing Crokinole.”
When food is at the heart of your gatherings, the right dining arrangement does half the hosting work for you. For an earth toned setup that every can gather around, Castlery’s new solid teak Rio dining table set is the one. Its natural wood grain ages handsomely, plus it pairs with benches or chairs accented with handwoven accents for plenty of seating options.
The new Sierra dining set has a polished, rustic character with its combo of light blond wicker and sleek, black aluminum framing. The backing’s PE wicker mimics the appearance and coloration of natural rattan — only it keeps its good looks longer and stays free of nasty mildew and unravelling fibers. Everything in the set is made to weather the elements, including the plush, water-resistant cushions and a smooth, wood resin tabletop.
Connect with friends (old & new)
James Park, AT’s newest video producer, finally realized his dream of hosting his own Korean BBQ party after years of planning delays. Turns out the hardest part about making Korean BBQ is fitting six friends on one New York City balcony.
“The fact that I was able to gather all of my Korean friends, old and new, and see them make different connections beyond me was really special to see,” James says. “Also, it was great for all of us to be unapologetically Korean, eating Korean foods together!”
Show off your hosting skills with a Sorrento dining table set. Its super durable resin wood top maintains its beauty through all kinds of spills, and the chairs’ padded seats hold their comfiness after many al fresco dinner parties. Or, swap in Newport dining chairs for a minimalist take on outdoor comfort: chic, black metal legs support a straw-colored, handwoven seat in a rush pattern. For a more classic look that guests can really relax into, go for the Como dining chairs with sturdy PE wicker handwoven onto an inviting circular frame.
Make your own community
Apartment Therapy’s people ops coordinator Kayla Shannon drew inspiration for her own outdoor decor from warm afternoons on her block in Bed-Stuy. “Block parties were the highlight of my community,” Kayla says. “I remember summers on my tree-lined street…listening to soul music, sharing laughs, and eating BBQ in front yards.” For Kayla, those parties “gave a confirmation that all neighbors stood in support and togetherness.”
When you want to reconnect, try moving coffee time outside. Castlery’s Maui loveseat set, with a gorgeous acacia wood coffee table, is the kind of stylish find that makes you want to spend the entire day lapping up sun rays. For prime relaxation time, sink into the Sierra’s deep-seated sofa and lounge chairs and enjoy good company around its slatted coffee table.
A pair of compact Riley lounge chairs makes even tight spaces inviting, and the hand-wrapped ropes around the arms is a smart, upscale touch. Apartment dwellers can appreciate their stackability, which makes them easy to tuck away when you need to reclaim your space. But if you’ve got room to grow, the modular Sorrento sectional — with handsome resin wood armrests and nap worthy cushions — lets everyone relax on seating that’s almost too comfortable to keep outside.
From mid-century modern loungers to upgraded backyard essentials, Castlery’s thoughtfully-designed furniture makes space to thrive in with friends and family. Their quick ship filter lets you see which items can refresh your space ASAP, and free fabric swatches help you nail down every perfect detail.