It’s too early in the season to say goodbye to outdoor living

var objLink = new myC_Remote.BuyLink(); objLink.LinkContent = “\"Buy“; objLink.IsAboveImage = false; objLink.Render(); Reading Eagle: Lauren A. Little | Salesman Rich Hoffman with outdoor dining sets at Kring’s Hearth and Home.

var objLink = new myC_Remote.BuyLink(); objLink.LinkContent = “\"Buy“; objLink.IsAboveImage = false; objLink.Render(); Reading Eagle: Lauren A. Little | Rich Hoffman, left, and John Hardy with a BOL griddle for sale at Kring’s Hearth and Home, Bechtelsville.

var objLink = new myC_Remote.BuyLink(); objLink.LinkContent = “\"Buy“; objLink.IsAboveImage = false; objLink.Render(); Reading Eagle: Lauren A. Little | Rich Hoffman with an outdoor furniture set at Kring’s Hearth and Home.

The season’s crisp temperatures and sunny days may be just the inspiration homeowners need to add some cozy touches and seasonal décor to an area previously focused on summer living.

And comfort seems to be a key factor in outdoor furniture and accessories, according to area retailers.

“We’ve been having people coming in looking for comfort and low maintenance,” said Emily Goense, part of the sales and marketing staff at Kring’s Hearth and Home, which has locations in Bechtelsville and Schnecksville. “Adirondacks and a fire pit at this time of year is a big thing.”

Heavyweight recycled plastic furniture is popular for shoppers at Kring’s because of its durability and low-maintenance features, Goense said.

Recycled plastic options are not only available in the low-slung, high-backed and traditional Adirondack seating, but rocking chairs and deep-seating options as well.

var objLink = new myC_Remote.BuyLink(); objLink.LinkContent = “\"Buy“; objLink.IsAboveImage = false; objLink.Render(); Reading Eagle: Lauren A. Little | A new outdoor furniture set at Kring’s Hearth and Home.

Cooler temperatures mean gathering around fire pits or fire tables for many area homeowners, with varied options in both wood-burning and gas models.

Dustin Bowman, manager of Bowman’s Stove and Patio in Ephrata Township, said “firepits are a popular item. Gas are probably more popular than wood. They’re not as messy.”

But if cooking s’mores over an open fire is likely to happen during outdoor event, a woodburning fire pit is a better choice, according to Bowman.

Low-maintenance materials are also the most popular choices in fire pits and tables, Goense and Bowman said. Such materials include steel, stainless steel and solid-cast aluminum.

Bowman said a glass wind guard can even be added to a fire table to prevent flames from blowing sideways and burning food or beverages set up on the surface.

The bounty of the harvest can be cooked outdoors with a grill, which could include side burners or a griddle. The opportunity can come in a free-standing grill island made of precast concrete, Bowman noted.

“We have some kitchens made out of cast aluminum cabinetry that hold grills, fridges or freezers,” he said.

var objLink = new myC_Remote.BuyLink(); objLink.LinkContent = “\"Buy“; objLink.IsAboveImage = false; objLink.Render(); Reading Eagle: Lauren A. Little | Salesman Rich Hoffman with outdoor fireplaces at Kring’s Hearth and Home.

“It gives the whole gathering space feeling, and you don’t have to clean up your kitchen,” she said.

Fall means warm comfort food served with family and friends, and a bountiful table decorated with pumpkins can be just as easily used for entertaining guests outdoors as inside.

An outdoor table and chairs can be used for dining or just a gathering space, Goense said, with traditional height seating continuing to be more in demand than a higher counter or bar height.

The scale of the chair is an important factor for customers deciding what is comfortable in their outdoor seating, Goense said.

While outdoor dining at a traditional table is important to some homeowners, a less traditional route can also be fun for fall entertaining.

“Nice, comfortable, cushioned seating is more popular than dining sets,” Bowman said of his customers.

Low maintenance seating with aluminum frames in colors such as black, dark bronze, gray and resin wicker are big sellers for Bowman, in addition to the recycled plastic option.

“It’s really heavy,” he said. “It’s not going to blow away, and the color goes all the way through.”

No matter what type of seating options are chosen for outdoor decorating this fall, the recycled plastic, polyethylene or “poly” material is selling well for area retailers.

Sam King, owner of Wyomissing Structures in Cumru Township, said, “We have a full line of poly furniture, tables and chairs.”

To add color to an outdoor space, King said he has 23 different shades of poly material that can even be customized in two or three tones for his customers.

Color can be as much fun for decorating an outdoor space as it can inside, with warmer, earthy tones keeping things cozy for fall.

This year, spa blue and spa green are widely used for a serene outdoor feel, with some decorators choosing rusty red accents as well.

Bringing splashes of color to a patio or deck is as easy as choosing low maintenance area rugs to add comfort and designate functional spaces, or including cushions in a fabric that withstands the weather.

“An area rug would help bring it all together and bring a room setting to your outdoor furniture,” Bowman said.

What’s got you wondering “what’s that about?” in the Berks County area? Ask us your burning questions and we’ll investigate. Please note that questions may be edited for clarity or brevity.


Post time: Sep-17-2019