Twelve lightweight pieces for your balcony
May 8, 2013

If you are looking to part from those old wooden folding chairs with pretty cushions boasting Grandma’s favorite floral motif you will find a few fresh ideas for seating on balconies and terraces here. The trend is moving away from the heavy toward the lightweight. They are after all much easier to move around when you have friends over, or even to quickly pull into the living room when in need of an extra seat. And models that can be used both inside and out were one of the highlights at this year’s Salone del Mobile. Light, filigree, flexible in their application and anything but ligneous: here are our favorites to add a touch of joy to your balcony or garden. And the bright colors certainly haven’t gone amiss.


This collection by the Bouroullec brothers is made of coated steel tubing with transparent polyamide rungs, giving the user a really comfy place to sit and spend long evenings on the balcony.

“Striped Poltroncina”, Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec for Magis, 2005, material: powder coated steel tubing, polyamide

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The Breton-born brothers have now been working on this weatherproof chair for four whole years, resulting in an item that works just as well in the kitchen as it does outdoors. The design is reminiscent of the branch structures seen on trees and of gardens with trees and hedges pruned perfectly into shape.

“Vegetal”, Ronan & Erwan Bouroullec for Vitra, 2008, material: fiber-reinforced polyamide

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Whether with solid or perforated backrests, the chair is made of fiberglass-reinforced polypropylene using injection molding technology – making for an extremely robust yet very lightweight piece of outdoor furniture.

“Supernatural”, Ross Lovegrove for Moroso, 2005, material: fiberglass-reinforced polypropylene

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Now available in heat-treated ash wood, Konstantin Grcic has transformed his striking armchair design, which is regal in many more ways than just its name, into an item of weatherproof outdoor furniture.

“Medici”, Konstantin Grcic for Mattiazzi, 2012, material: ash wood

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Designed in celebration of the 125th anniversary of the Basel State Gardens, this stackable object reveals itself to be a chair, table and stool in one, making it the ideal outdoor furniture for use on the balcony, in the garden or even in the local park.

“Basilea”, Atelier Alinea, 2011, material: galvanized steel

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Thanks to its weatherproof coating, the colorful outdoor furniture series, which is in some ways reminiscent of the shape of a leaf, is perfectly suited for use on the balcony at home. Waterproof cushions make this a wonderfully comfortable place to spend those warm spring evenings.

“Leaf”, Lievore Altherr Molina for Arper, 2006, material: powder-coated steel

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Whether used as a table or a stool, this piece is a must for the terrace of any design aficionado. The plastic seat shell with its geometric recesses – the product of a special injection molding process – plays around with the volume of the seat with a certain refinement.

“Osorom”, Konstantin Grcic for Moroso, 2002, material: plastic

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Almost a candidate for our “Outdoor Classics” category, the stackable chair by British design Jasper Morrison, is made using a pressure casting process and is available in eight different colors and a variety of versions.

“Air Armchair”, Jasper Morrison for Magis, 2006, material: polypropylene

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These are definitely much easier to command than their namesake: With tension cords and made of solid fir wood, this table and bench combo is a robust solution for any outdoor area.

“Kampenwand”, Nils Holger Moormann, 2009, material: fir wood, galvanized steel

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It has decorated the park in the heart of Paris since the 1930s. In 2004 Frédéric Sofia created a reinterpretation of the famous chairs found in the Jardin du Luxembourg. The result is an extensive outdoor collection, available in 24 colors.

“Luxembourg”, Frédéric Sofia for Fermob, 2004, material: aluminum

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Mies van der Rohe’s “Barcelona Chair” served as the source of inspiration for this seating furniture, which ranging from an armchair to a six-meter-long bench prompts the user to try out an unending array of combinations. Extras such as the armrests and seat cushions make the collection extremely versatile – not only on the patio and not only in Barcelona.

“Bench B”, Konstantin Grcic for BD Barcelona Design, 2012, material: oxidized aluminum

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The lightweight, elegantly curved armchair is both UV- and water-resistant and thus perfectly suited to outdoor use. Furthermore, it even makes a contribution toward environmental protection: It is made 100% of recyclable materials.

“Tatami 306”, Claudio Dondoli and Marco Pocci for Pedrali, 2009, material: polypropylene

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