Affordable Patio Tables

The sunnier the days get, the more excited we get about utilizing our backyard to the fullest this spring and summer (and hopefully into the fall). You’ll remember we’ve been working on some plans for back there, and it’s slowly coming together. Our seedlings are doing well and will be ready to transplant in another month or so. We’re also planning to have a small seating area just off the back door to the house. It’s only going to be about 6 feet by 6 feet with a rounded edge. Just big enough for the two of us to enjoy our morning coffee or an evening burger.

We already picked up four of these folding chairs last summer. They’re very inexpensive ($20), foldable, so we can put them away in the garage for the winter, and small – perfect for our tiny backyard.

Now, we just need a small side table to go with them, so we’re on the hunt. The only criteria are that it be pretty small and easily movable (nothing affixed or concrete) and cheap. Here’s what we’ve got so far. All of these are under &75 with the majority being under $50:

 That’s the IKEA Tarno table.

Pros: At only $19.99, it’s one of the cheapest of the bunch. It folds easily, so it could hang on the wall when out of use, and the thin metal legs give it an even lighter profile.

Cons: It’s IKEA, and it’s only $19.99, which might not translate into the most quality of patio furniture items. It could be light enough to blow over in a heavy breeze, which Chicago is definitely known for.

The other IKEA pick: IKEA Lindved table

Pros: Also only $20. That lower shelf thing could house a plant. Could be painted a brighter color.

Cons: Not actually an outdoor table, so I’m not sure if it would hold up or not. It’s metal, so it could be painted with Rustoleum to ensure it won’t rust.

Garcon Rolling Bar Cart from CB2

Pros: Already comes in a fun color. On wheels, so could be easily moved and used elsewhere. Two levels for added space.

Cons: The price – it’s the most expensive of the bunch at $69.95. Could go on sale, though.

Side Canyon Table

Pros: Aluminum construction means it’s lightweight and durable. Folds for storage. Only $27.97. Great metal finish could be cool next to wooden chairs.

Cons: The picture’s a little unclear. It’s hard to tell whether this would be durable or not, and since it’s not carried in a store, we wouldn’t really know until we had it shipped home.

Outdoor Tray Table from World Market

Pros: Cheapest tray table I could find at only $40. Tray top removes for bringing things in and out of the house.

Cons: All wood construction could be a little boring with the chairs.

Lattice Top Side Table from Urban Outfitters

Pros: Probably my favorite one. It’s only $38, too. Nice yellow color. Folds.

Cons: I’m not sure – maybe bad construction?

So, that’s what we’ve come up with so far. Who knows what route we’ll actually go. We’re big fans of just finding something with a good shape and adjusting it to make it fit our needs. We might just end up with an old side table painted in a bright exterior paint color. I think I’d be okay with that, too.


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