Many people tend to confuse antique with the retro concept. When any style is being referred to as antiques, these are usually styles which existed about a century or more. Again, retro refers to styles that existed between the periods forties to eighties. Hence, if you are looking at retro seats and tables for your home, you would be ideally looking at furniture styles and designs that existed from the fifties to the sixties.
There are different kinds of retro designs in outdoor furniture to explore. Whether you are looking at cafe stool or furniture for your patio area, you will have options like dinette sets, sofas and lighting fixtures that are retro styled. You could also look at pieces like ottomans, mirrors and ashtrays as accessories.
The forties look
If you wish to recreate the forties look, it would involve the use of bold colors in the furnishings like tapestries. Hence, if you are looking to decorate the patio area, you could opt for bright and bold colors in furniture pieces. The sofas used to be wide and deep and included reversible cushions and low arms. Even chairs of plywood or plastic could be looked at as well as cafe stool if you have an open bar area. You could have chairs that have unusually curved seats and are set on top of wired bases. The Eames chair style could also be looked at, which gained popularity at this time.
Fifties and sixties
If you wish to try outdoor décor you might try the fifties look when Formica tables and chairs with chrome had come into fashion. The dining sets were meant for casual dining and hence, will suit an outdoor environment easily. You could also opt for eclectic designs like coffee tables that are kidney shaped or wall clocks and mirrors that have unique geometric designs. The sixties had space age designs that can be inherited. For instance, the Jetsons was a popular cartoon that showcased space age furniture and furnishings. These included metallic shapes and designs that were geometric.
If you are looking at being inspired by the seventies and later, you can look at furniture that was influenced by the hippie culture. Mixed designs and bohemian flavors will dominate choices of these eras. You could also look at wicker seats that became popular during these decades. No matter what you like, you would need to have sufficient choices. Approach a furniture specialist who has a wide range of designs in patio furniture for you to choose from. You can then find the right designs that appeal to you as well as find new ones that you have not seen before, allowing you to stock up your home with unusual patio seat pieces.