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Outdoor gatherings are more casual by nature so why not design a space that evokes that easy, breezy summer feeling? One of our favorite ways to create an inviting, relaxed outdoor space is to use furniture that does double duty for both lounging and casual dining. It’s a perfect solution for small outdoor spaces to maximize function, but it works beautifully for large outdoor decks or patios, too.¬†Gear up for summer entertaining with these outdoor seating ideas.

Idea #1: sofa + cocktail table

This seating arrangement is a classic from indoor living rooms: a sofa or sectional with a classic cocktail table. Everyone can get cozy and comfortable and the cocktail table easily accommodates a simple summer spread of drinks and appetizers. Because outdoor fabrics are moisture-resistant, they repel stains as well so you don’t have to worry about spills.

Idea #2: chairs + end tables

Give everyone their own inviting spot with an arrangement of outdoor chairs. Place small, easy-to-move accent tables, ottomans or benches nearby so you can position them to hold a cold beverage of a plate of picnic food. This design idea is particularly flexible because chairs and accent tables are easy to move around as your entertaining needs change.

Idea #3: best of both worlds

If you have plenty of space, create an outdoor great room with distinct spaces for lounging and dining. The key here is to incorporate cushy seating in both areas so everyone feels welcome to linger.

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