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Keep the rain at bay with these stylish garden shelter ideas

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When we sell our wooden garden seats we are keen to advise our customers on the best care for the product.  There is nothing more important to us than your continued enjoyment of your bench or dining furniture.  Therefore, when the wetter weather closes in, we always advise you to move your furniture indoors or away from exposure to the rain.  Here we offer some advice on the most stylish garden shelter ideas, which you could use to keep your furniture in the best condition for longer.  Alternatively, you can use it to shelter yourself from the bright sun so that you can enjoy the outdoors no matter the extremities.

Smaller investments

If you do not want to purchase a significant structure in your garden, or you are looking for something cheaper – then go for shelter seating.  You can buy benches that come with rooves – or even buy a seat that hangs like a hammock and acts as a tent.  You can attach the chairs from a sturdy outdoor beam and swing in peace no matter the weather.

Sometimes your shelter needs to be nothing more than time away from a summer shower.  If you are looking to start small, then a covered seat of some kind is the perfect starting point.  Be aware though that this will need to be brought inside or protected during the winter months.  So, this is not a year-round solution.

Parasols and canopies

If you want a little more than just a seat, but you don’t want to invest too much money, then a parasol or canopy might be the cheaper option.  It will also offer you a lot more flexibility than some other shelters you can buy, which tend to be a lot more permanent.  Your parasol or canopy can fold away and be stored when not needed.

The same factors, cheapness and flexibility, are also the problems.  This will only be a temporary solution and one that only really works to protect from light summer showers and the heat of the sun.  Your canopies will not act as a barrier to heavy winter rains at bay.  You will probably still need to buy a cover for your garden bench or outdoor garden furniture to protect them from the worst of the weather.

A slightly more ambitious option is to build a wooden structure around your patio.  You can then buy an awning that extends across the frame and can also retract if needed.  You can use the wooden structure to create something of a vertical garden – making the whole shelter quite beautiful as well as practical.  This an excellent shelter to include in a Mediterranean style space.  The frame can give that feel of doorways, arches and mazes that are a classic feature of an Italian garden.  The canvas awning need not be pulled out all the time and choosing a terracotta colour, or a light green would help this to work in this themed garden too.

Pods, arbours and summerhouses

If all this sounds a little unambitious and you are looking for a home away from home but only a footstep or two away, then you need a structure.  It would be best if you had something more of a permanent construction in your space. This pod, arbour or summerhouse will be more of an investment.  However, it offers so much possibility.  You could create yourself a studio in your garden which you could use as a working space.  You could have a playroom away from the house, where your children can be as loud as they need to be.

If you have big plans, then you need a summerhouse.  This will be like a shed, but it will have an open front, with big glass windows and a standard door.

You might not want a whole new building in your garden.  The cost might be too much, or you may worry that it leaves you too little space for anything else in your yard.  Another permanent structure is an arbour, which is a little more informal, with open sides, but has a solid frame.

Want something quirkier? Then there are a whole host of pods available now.  Circular frames made of metal or plastic, which shape around you, can make you feel cosier.  These pods can become a vibrant feature, something that will wow your visitors, as well as offering you space away from everyone.

Anna Sharples

Anna is the marketing and office manager for Garden Benches - a premium supplier of high-quality wooden benches and other outdoor furniture.

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