At this time of year, many of my suburban neighbors are planting mums and hanging faux Halloween cobwebs. I’m doing some of the same–though I’m not a big fan of polyester cobwebs. (Stay tuned: we’ve got ideas for Halloween decorating and we’ll post them later this week.) My focus is wicker furniture, and bringing it back inside the house before it gets too cold. A couple of years ago, I bought six great wicker dining chairs from Gardener’s Eden because I liked the look of them surrounding my round mahogany dining table. I wasn’t even thinking about how practical it would be to use them inside and out. I love using the same wicker chairs on the front porch during the summer time. When the wicker moves outside, I replace them with a hodgepodge of tag sale chairs. Now that I’ve welcomed the wicker back to the table, I’m finding that the informal and lightweight nature of wicker furniture relaxes people. The room looks more interesting. So I’ve got my eyes peeled for great wicker pieces that can work inside and out. Last week, during a visit to view fall market at the Decoration and Design building in New York, Lauren and I stopped by to see the Manutti Belgian Outdoor Furniture collection at the Michael Taylor Designs showroom. They had a huge selection of really fantastic wicker pieces–this trend is definitely catching on! Below, a Michael Taylor chair. Even this past weekend, at the Rhinebeck Antique show, Lauren and I were struck by how many unique wicker pieces were for sale. This wonderful 1920’s settee (below) came from a French bistro in Paris. This chair is American, from the 1930’s. It was one of a pair. A great neutral yellow sofa that was surprsingly comfortable, and not surprisingly sold by the time we saw it! You can also find great wicker pieces at retail stores, if your needs are immediate, and I say go for it. You’ll use them indefinitely, in or out. IKEA’s Majby Chair (below) with armrests for $79.99. Crate & Barrel’s Captiva Arm Chair is a little over $325 each. They’re super sturdy. Target carries a Smith & Hawkens collection called Maraton. A set of four cost $749. Wicker furniture has never looked more chic, so why not choose pieces that are truly versatile, for indoor and outdoor use?
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