Tiny bistro tables and and compact chairs are eminently more practical for outdoors than big hulking monster pieces, because you can easily carry them from patio to lawn and back, to follow the sun. And if you don't have much room? Even the smallest sliver of a balcony will try to accommodate a table for two. Here are ten of our favorites:
Above: Made in Italy with steel frames and weather-resistant powdercoat finishes, the Arc En Ciel Folding Table ($195) and Arc En Ciel Folding Chair ($89) fold completely flat; both available from Design Within Reach.
Above: Made of galvanized steel, both the Tolix Marais A Chair (currently on sale for $212.50) and Tolix Marais Two-Seater Dining Table (currently on sale for $675.75) have rubber feet to prevent damage to the floor. They were designed by French metalworker Xavier Pauchard and are still manufactured in Autun, France; available from Design Within Reach.
Above: A folding Pronto Small Bistro Table ($199) and Pronto Folding Chair ($99 apiece) are made of metal and coated with a weather-resistant finish; available in white or green or blue from Crate & Barrel. The Pronto collection's feet have rubber caps to prevent scratches.
Above: A 30-inch Bistro Perforated Floreal Table (L), made of metal and available in 25 colors including Cedar Green, is $322; a set of two Fermob Bistro Duraflon Chairs is $198. Both the classic Paris chair and cafe table are available from French Bistro Furniture.
Above: Made of steel with a rust- and weather-resistant powdercoat finish, Three Piece Folding Metal Bistro Furniture Set is available in four colors including green; currently on sale for $99 from Target (online only).
Above: A Small Steel Garden Table (approximately 23 inches in diameter) designed for catering has a sturdy three-legged base and is 126€. A red Aluminum Garden Seat (R) from Fermob is rust-proof and stackable and is 197€; both available from Manufactum.
Above: A Lucinda White Stacking Chair made of iron with a powdercoat finish is $79.99 and a fliptop 90 Degrees Bisstro Table CB2 with a polished stainless steel base is $199; both should be stored indoors during winter months and are available from CB2.
Above: A set that includes a round Zinc Table and Chairs for two; £165 from The Balcony Gardener.
Above: Both the Painted Metal Bistro Table ($188) and the Painted Metal Bistro Chair Set collapse for easy storage. Coated with a rust-resistant finish and available in five colors including gray, they're available from Terrain.
Above: Designed in 1930 by Artur Lindqvist, these classic outdoor furniture pieces from family-owned Swedish company Grythyttan have been staples of European cafe life for decades. A Brewery Chair is 1660 SDK and a Trefotsbord table made of untreated oak with a galvanized frame is 3170 SDK from Grythyttan.
Above: Constructed of acacia wood and steel, a Tarno Bistro Set includes an almost-square table (it measures 21 inches by 21 5/8 inches) and two folding chairs. The manufacturer recommends that you protect the set with a water repellent cover and reglaze it once a year to maintain the finish. It's $49.99 from Ikea.
Do you prefer bench seating outdoors? See High/Low: Fermob Bench for Less?