Foter

A quality outdoor bench can be the crowning jewel to any garden. With so many choices of materials and finishes, how will you know which one is best suited to your style and budgetary needs?

Table of Contents [Hide]

A bench can complete your outdoor living space by adding just the right touch of comfort and beauty. It can make an undiscovered corner of your garden inviting and new. It will allow you to explore those corners of nature that you hadn't noticed before.

If you are sprucing up your outdoor living space and need to purchase a new outdoor bench, here are some great tips to consider while you're shopping around.

What Materials Work Best for Outdoor Benches?

When you're shopping for benches, it's essential to consider the bench's material. Each medium has its pros and cons. To choose the best fit for your garden, determine the climate and the usage of your bench.

Wood

This material is always an excellent choice for outdoor spaces. You can't go wrong with wooden outdoor benches, which is why wood is often used for park benches and other public outdoor seating areas.

Look for wood that is center-cut hardwood. Check the grain, as well, as it should be consistent. The material of the screws holding the bench together is also essential; stainless steel or zinc-plated screws work very well in outdoor climes, and if your seat gets loose with age, you can tighten the screws to make it sturdy again.

Some of the best types of wood to build an outdoor bench are cedar, pine, or teak.

  • Pine and cedar age into a silvery finish unless they're treated, and benches constructed of pine or cedar lasts for generations. Cedar is more expensive than pine.

  • Teak is a tropical tree used to make boats. It is excellent in withstanding the wear and tear of the outdoors and can last up to 50 years if properly taken care of, which is why it tends to be on the pricey side. To maintain its lovely reddish hue, apply oil once or twice a year.

Black Wooden Classic Garden Bench
Brown Classic Wooden Outdoor Bench
Black Wooden Bottom Shelfe Garden Bench
Brown Wooden Storage Outdoor Bench
Gray Classic Wooden Garden Bench
Green Classic Wooden Garden Bench

Metal

This material is another excellent choice in terms of durability and price. Metal benches do not need as much care but also aren't quite as comfortable as wooden or wicker benches.

There are a few types of metal that work better in the outdoors than others. Cast aluminum, extruded aluminum, and ornate iron are three superb choices for outdoor metal benches.

  • Cast aluminum is heavy and durable, more so than extruded aluminum, and can convey intricate design patterns.

  • Extruded aluminum is not as durable as cast aluminum, but it is lighter, so it's easier to move around if you haven't decided on a spot yet.

  • Ornate iron was all the rage in the Victorian Age, and its curlicues and elaborate designs are reminiscent of this style period.

Metal outdoor benches are a great choice because they will last 50 years or more and won't wear visibly as wooden benches will.

Black Classic Steel Outdoor Bench
Black Traditional Aluminium Garden Bench
Black Classic Steel Park Bench
White Classic Iron Garden Bench
Black Butterfly Metal Garden Bench
Black Metal Swing Outdoor Bench

Other materials

There are also outdoor benches made of wicker, resin, or plastic. Wicker benches, whether all-natural or treated to make them weather-resistant, are made of rattan vines, bamboo, or cane. These should only be used in a covered area outdoors as they can degrade quickly.

Plastic or resin benches are a great affordable choice as they are lightweight, easy to care for, and the newer models offer some fantastic style choices.

Brown Wicker Storage Outdoor Bench

Brown Wicker Storage Outdoor Bench

Black Classic Wicker Garden Bench

Black Classic Wicker Garden Bench

Grey Modern Rattan Garden Bench

Grey Modern Rattan Garden Bench

Brown Woven Picnic Bench

Brown Woven Picnic Bench

Green Classic Resin Garden Bench

Green Classic Resin Garden Bench

Blue Synthetic Plastic Outdoor Bench

Blue Synthetic Plastic Outdoor Bench

How Do I Choose the Style of an Outdoor Benches?

Some materials lend themselves naturally to certain styles. Japanese benches are usually simple, with a wide seat, and without a back. These benches work best when they're made of wood or reclaimed wood.

Baroque benches are incredibly romantic and would fit perfectly underneath a weeping willow next to a meandering stream. The whorls and viney designs on these benches are best displayed in metal, although wood or wood-like plastic could make a credible substitute.

A contemporary bench would work in almost any material as this style can refer to the clean lines and simplicity of modern design or the slightly more ornate mid-century modern.

Gray Modern Teak Outdoor Bench

Gray Modern Teak Outdoor Bench

Brown Simple Wooden Picnic Bench

Brown Simple Wooden Picnic Bench

Brown Baroque Wooden Park Bench

Brown Baroque Wooden Park Bench

Black Brown Wood Metal Outdoor Bench

Black Brown Wood Metal Outdoor Bench

Brown Modern Wooden Tree Bench

Brown Modern Wooden Tree Bench

Brown Modern Plastic Convertible Bench

Brown Modern Plastic Convertible Bench

Quick Tips

Brown Modern Teak Garden Bench
Brown Modern Wooden Outdoor Bench
White Modern Plastic Garden Bench
White Modern Plastic Outdoor Bench
Black Modern Steel Patio Bench
Brown Modern Wooden Garden Bench