Hello from my new favorite place—my balcony! I originally was going to write one post about my balcony, inclusive of the furniture I went with and how I hung string lights on the railing, but it was getting to be really long so I decided to break it into two posts.
Last summer, one thing I really craved was outdoor space of my own. Because of the pandemic, my building’s beautiful rooftop remained closed for the majority of the warmer months, but I was falling in love with spending a ton of time outside because of my daily walks through Dupont Circle. My sister and cousin—who also live in Arlington—got balcony furniture last year and we ended up spending so many wine nights out there. It was so fun and made me want a balcony of my own. (Funnily enough, my first apartment in Arlington had a balcony and we never used it; if I could turn back time!)
When I was apartment shopping in Arlington last summer, the number one thing on my “must have” list was a balcony! In addition to the white kitchen, part of the reason why I fell in love with this apartment was because it’s balcony is huge and much larger than most other balconies in the neighborhood—some that I walk by barely fit two chairs.
Since I moved into this apartment in late September, most of the patio furniture had long been picked over. I also knew that I had maybe a month of good balcony weather left, and I didn’t want to buy new furniture for it to sit out on the balcony all winter before I had the chance to really use it. So, I decided to start looking around for what I might want—and found these Opal House Britanna Patio Club Chairs at Target. They were sold out, but I set a restock alert. I got an email in February with good news—the chairs were back in stock!
When I went to purchase these Opal House Britanna Patio Club Chairs, which run at $450 for a set of two chairs, I noticed these Britanna Patio Dining Chairs, which run at $650 for a set of four chairs. I knew I wanted four chairs for my balcony, given I wanted to be able to entertain out here, so I was torn on what to do. The dining chairs are the same height as the patio chairs I ultimately went with, but they aren’t as deep and the cushions aren’t as plush. $900 (and $650) is a lot of money for four patio chairs, but right when I was deciding, I found out that I earned a bonus at work. So as a way to celebrate that accomplishment and treat myself, I decided to go with the Opal House Britanna Patio Club Chairs as those were the ones I really wanted. I also knew that if I invested, I could have these patio chairs for years to come and they would eventually pay for themselves. I try to take really nice care of my things, so I knew they would be well loved, but well cared for.
I have the Target credit card, so I was able to get free shipping—which was able to save me a sizable chunk of money given the size of these patio chairs. The chairs arrived packaged so well and are such great quality. They are extremely sturdy and the cushions are so comfortable. They’re made out of water-resistant fabric and it works so well—water literally runs right off them.
My balcony is completely covered and most times when it rains, it remains dry. When I know a storm is coming, I put these patio covers over the chairs, but there have been a couple storms that have soaked my chairs through and they dry so quickly and don’t look any worse for the wear. I also put these covers on when I go out of town and plan to have them over the chair frames all winter. (I’ll bring the cushions inside once balcony season is over.)
During the height of spring, I was really worried about pollen turning these cushions yellow. While they definitely did get covered in pollen, they held up against it extremely well—I wipe them down about once a week with a towel and all the pollen wipes right off. It doesn’t seem like the pollen buries into the cushions, it seems to sit right on top, which is great. I also wipe them down often enough that they never appear visibly yellow, even though the towel picks up a lot of pollen and grime. (For a while I was putting the covers on to protect the cushions from the pollen but decided that was overkill!)
My one complaint about these patio chairs is that the top cushions don’t have ties, so they aren’t secured to the chairs. Sometimes when it’s really windy, my pillows will blow around on my balcony—luckily I haven’t lost any! (Since I am still working from home, it’s easy to keep an eye on them.) So when it’s super windy, I either throw the covers over the chairs or bring the pillows inside.
In addition to patio chairs, I knew I wanted a place for people to put cocktails or wine or snacks or a book when they’re sitting outside on the balcony. So I decided garden stools would be a great way to bring in some color while also serving as cute side tables. I settled on blue and white and searched around for a pattern I loved—I stumbled on these Safavieh Parri Garden Stools and knew they were the ones. I ordered three so I could put one in between each chair.
I snagged these garden stools at Decor Market, where they retail for $96—I was able to find a coupon code that dropped them to around $80 per stool. They’re currently sold out at Decor Market, but One Kings Lane has them in stock, just under a different name. If you’re looking for this particular garden stool, I’d definitely recommend shopping around online; they are carried at a lot of places and, seemingly, at all different price points.
The garden stools are also amazing quality—they are so sturdy, I don’t ever worry about them blowing around or getting knocked over by the wind. They are also sturdy enough that someone could sit on them, which adds additional seating.
I love the view of my balcony from inside my apartment, too! It’s a little oasis I’ve come to love spending time on—and can’t wait to spend more time out on the balcony all summer long. You can read all about how I hung outdoor string lights on my balcony here—it is such a treat to turn them on as the sun is going down; they make nighttime on the balcony really magical.
Feel free to reach out in the comments below if you have any questions about my balcony furniture! x