Dear Claudia:

My backyard needs help. My patio set is worn and broken so it is time to replace it. Can you give me practical ideas about what to buy?



It is time to get our backyards ready for summer. It is necessary to take into consideration the weather here in Arizona when purchasing any outdoor items since temperatures go beyond the 100-degree mark and the sun beats down mercilessly on anything outdoors. Also, if you have a pool the water and the chemicals tend to destroy any metal that it contacts repeatedly.

When buying a patio set or umbrellas we tend to like bright colors that add a resort look to our backyards. However, you have to make sure the color is going to withstand the sun here in Arizona. There are several high quality products that have good warranties. I recommend buying a light-color fabric with a good warranty so you do not have to worry about replacing it as often. If you take care of the cushions and umbrellas by putting them away when they are not in use they will last much longer.

Metal patio furniture looks great and can be less expensive than wicker or wood but it can be hot to the touch and unless you take the time to dry it after contact with pool water it may rust.

Plastic does not hold up well under the Arizona sun but is convenient for extra seating so put it away when not in use. Consider your budget and the look you want to accomplish then choose the pieces that best fit all of your requirements and enjoy your updated patio.


Dear Claudia:

How can I spruce up my backyard?


I love this season, there are so many kinds of seasonal flowers to brighten your home and garden. Take advantage of all the great foliage available.

Besides using greenery to spruce up your backyard you can also use accessories to dress up your furniture and make the environment more stylish. Know your budget and the style you are trying to accomplish first then make a list of the most appealing items to buy. I recommend buying things like an area rug, lamps, outdoors fan, candles, pottery, some throw pillows and perhaps a statue or sundial.

Don't forget that at night lighting can make a very dramatic nice statement to your outdoor décor. Take advantage of the mild weather to make these changes before summer sets in, then you'll be able to relax in your attractive backyard.


Claudia Dabdoub is a resident of Ahwatukee Foothills and owner of D'amore Interior Design Studio. To ask a question for an upcoming column, reach her at (480) 751-9938 or


(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.