(The Washington Post)

Summer is almost here, which means it’s time to move the party outdoors and consider hosting backyard barbecues, potlucks and picnics.

Thankfully, you don’t have to sacrifice comfort or function for well-designed outdoor furniture, says landscape designer Mario Nievera. “Contemporary design works well in the outdoors. It encompasses the simple geometric shapes that contrast beautifully to the organic shapes of nature,” the Palm Beach, Fla., designer said via email. “I think you can bring warmth, texture and beauty to even a small courtyard, garden or balcony.”

Here are Nievera’s suggestions on how to outfit your own backyard oasis.


(Seren & Lily; Crate & Barrel)

SPLURGE: Cliffside teak sofa in white (serenaandlily.com), left. SAVE: Regatta sofa with Sunbrella cushion in white sand (crateandbarrel.com).


(Restoration Hardware; Frontgate)

SPLURGE: Tuuci Ocean Master hexagonal Aluma-Teak umbrella in natural with java finish (restorationhardware.com), left. SAVE: Vista umbrella by Porta Forma, rectangular in natural (frontgate.com).


(Dash & Albert; The Mine )

SPLURGE: 8-by-11-foot Catamaran stripe indoor/outdoor rug in black and ivory (dashandalbert.annieselke.com), left. SAVE: 8-by-8-foot Trans Ocean Sorrento rugby stripe area rug in black (themine.com).


(Knoll; AuthenTEAK)

SPLURGE: Kingsley-Bate Tivoli club chair in cream (authenteak.com), left. SAVE: 1966 lounge chair by Richard Schultz for Knoll in white with white mesh and strap (knoll.com).


(homenature; West Elm )

SPLURGE:Teak stainless large rope lantern (homenature.com), left. SAVE: Wood-and-rope lantern, tall (westelm.com).

More Splurge or Save online

For more of Nievera’s picks, M
go to washingtonpost.com/home.