Originally Published on January 7, 2020. Last Updated on September 13, 2023.
You weighed the options and decided to invest in a lake house to create a place of seclusion and serenity for your family. For you, a lake house is an oasis where you can escape for long weekends, celebrations, and summer vacations. You considered building a rustic cabin, but ultimately chose a modern lake house for the amenities and the flexibility to add more rooms or completely redo the interior.
Maintaining a lake house requires exceptional attention to detail, so your idyllic retreat is operational all season long. In the shuffle of picking paint shades and updating structures like the dock, take time to carefully choose outdoor furniture that can endure years of consistent use.
Follow our guide to find the best style, material, and use of space at your lake house.
Identifying Outdoor Spaces at Your Lake House
Pinpoint the best outdoor furniture choices for your lake house by deciding how you’ll spend your time. These popular options will provide structure to your deck, patio, or lakeside hangout.
Not every lake house is situated directly on a lake, but when it is, you’ll want to take full advantage of the breathtaking view. Poolside furniture like a chaise set can provide a tranquil place to read, nap, and soak in the sun if you have prime land on the water. Is the lake further on the horizon? An Adirondack set provides a relaxed setting where you can enjoy a drink and watch the brilliant colors streak the sky during a lakeside sunset.
Lake houses are an obvious fit for large family gatherings. Set the scene for alfresco meals with loved ones when you have a large dining set in the center of your deck. Or section off separate smaller dining spaces in alcoves along the side of the house.
If you want to add cover for drizzly days or bright sun rays, all POLYWOOD dining tables are designed with an umbrella hole and accommodate our 9′ Tilt Market Umbrella & Base.
A lake house gives those with a green thumb the chance to craft a garden Monty Don would admire. Arrange garden furniture in your garden walkway or veranda to create a quiet spot away from the bustle of the house. Something simple like a bench or a garden chair set can anchor the space.
Fire Pit Table
Extend the entertainment late into the night by gathering the kiddos around a blazing fire. Instead of building your own fire pit, consider a low-maintenance fire pit table that can be turned off with the push of a button. Situating a few Adirondack chairs around a fire pit table provides a clear focal point for your lake house yard.
Need some more furniture ideas for your lake house? Read our blog for more potential uses for your outdoor spaces.
Weather Considerations for Outdoor Furniture
The outdoor furniture at your lake house receives direct exposure to nature’s extremes. When shopping for outdoor furniture, keep in mind these common issues that can damage certain materials.
Rain and Moisture
Nestled next to a large body of water, a lake house receives a double onslaught of wetness from the nearby lake and frequent rainfall. If you choose wood or wicker furniture, it can become brittle and warped in a season. Metal furniture will rust rapidly without continual treatment.
One costlier but longer-lasting material choice is HDPE lumber. This type of material is constructed to withstand the elements, including rain and constant moisture. Invest in outdoor furniture materials that won’t mildew, rot, or play host to bacterial buildup.
Dirt and Grime
After an afternoon of kayaking or a successful morning hunt, the deck and furniture directly outside your lake house can get dirty quickly. When you choose furniture made of wood or wrought iron, you might spend hours per weekend cleaning and protecting the material.
HDPE lumber is designed to repel moisture and muck, so it doesn’t set into the material. All that’s needed to eliminate grime and buildup is an occasional wipe down with a cloth, warm water, and gentle soap.
Cold Weather and Snow
Do you have a lake house in the Adirondacks of New York? Winter in northern regions brings brutal blanketing snow and subfreezing temperatures that can compromise the integrity of your outdoor furniture.
Choose patio furniture that can endure the harshest environmental factors, from beating sun and torrential rain to the sleeting, freezing, snowy winters at your lake house. Furniture made of higher-quality material shouldn’t crack, split, chip, or fade after a season of snowfall.
Lake House Furniture Style Tips
A lake house blends modern elements with the tranquil, natural feel of nature. Unlike cabin furnishings, these homes draw their charm from providing a feeling of peace with minimal fuss. Discover your lake house style with these jumping-off points.
Best Color Schemes for Your Lake House
Whites — For furniture near your door or under a canopy, stick to light colors like white, tan, and cream. These colors are practical, as they open up the space, and they create dazzling displays as the light bounces off of them during sunrises and sunsets.
Accent Colors — Every lake house has room for inviting, soothing accent colors. Popular options are sea blue and teal to mimic the water. As lake homes vary widely in style, you can branch out and pick a color like scarlet or cappuccino brown. Use the same accent color in multiple areas to unify your palette.
With a lake house, the view dictates the space. Maximize windows, take away obstructions, and keep an open, airy floor plan. This strategy will provide a direct connection to the breathtaking view of the mountains or the rolling shore of the lake.
When choosing furniture styles, opt for clean lines, gentle curves, and coastal or beachy options that are lounge-ready and close to the ground. Curved slats, generous support, and modern slings all lend themselves well to lake house furniture. Lake houses are more contemporary than cabins, so feel free to mimic the patterns and shapes you prefer inside your home.
What burning questions do you have while furnishing your lake house? Let us know in the comments!
To help you plan your space, check out the POLYWOOD Outdoor Furniture Planner. We’ll ask you about the size and shape of your space, 5 quick questions total, and then provide you with up to three furniture set results.