All Weather Outdoor Rattan Furniture
When one thinks of decorating their back yard or patio with decorative and durable furniture, the one product that comes to mind is rattan. This type of furniture comes in a variety of styles, colors, configurations and quality. Over the centuries, rattan has inched its way into many countries all over the world as far away as the Mideast and during the renaissance period to Europe under Louis XIII and Napoleon Bonaparte.
Rattan furniture has grown from a rural cottage business into a large business generating loads of labor-intensive employment to thousands of people throughout South East Asia where rattan is a species that flourishes in tropical forests.
These large rattan plantations are where we get the raw materials used to manufacture the many different types of rattan furniture we see today. This can be dining room sets, living room furniture, cabinets, patio furniture, coffee tables and much more. In addition, there are outdoor and indoor furniture accessories purchased and used in most of the world markets today such as Europe, Canada, the United States, China, Japan and Korea.
Manufacturers have assembly lines that include both manual handcrafting and automation. Top quality manufacturers are able to present their customers with a "Certificate of Authenticity" to confirm the customer is getting what he pays for produced in conformity with the best industry standards.
Producing quality pieces of rattan or wicker furniture requires a smooth process beginning with harvesting. Then there are several processes that require lots of quality control until the end product is finished. Rattan is a vine that after drying becomes pliable once it is heated. These vines are then bent and molded into desirable shapes to form the product whether it is a fine piece of furniture or a classic accessory. As soon as the vines cool they become stiff and hard. This makes the finished product strong and durable. Do not confuse rattan with wicker. Rattan can use wicker technology but not all wicker furniture is rattan. Wicker is a special weave and the furniture could be made from bamboo, grass or other vegetation.
High quality all weather outdoor rattan furniture
generally uses a teak frame. The combination of the two woods works well with warm and dry conditions. One disadvantage to rattan is that it is vulnerable to mold if there is too much moisture in the air. The alternative to protecting the piece of furniture is to have a protective coating added by the manufacturer or store it away from moisture when not in use. It is important when purchasing rattan to keep in mind your own environment. In order to combat this issue and to make furniture last longer there is a synthetic form of rattan used. This is a product that combines resin rattan and plastic rattan to form a highly durable product that can withstand just about any weather condition. This type of furniture is often less expensive than natural rattan even though it may also come in every variety, style and color you can imagine. Depending on your pocketbook, it is a viable alternative. Natural rattan will last for well over fifteen years but if one is willing to invest while not compromising on looks and style then synthetic rattan may be the way to go.
Many people are under the misconception that rattan furniture is only good when used outdoors. But, there are many five star hotels, high-end designers, condominium projects, offices and resorts that use an entire variety of indoor rattan furniture, fixtures and accessories as well.
A person can special order rattan living room and dining room sets, group seating arrangements, chairs, swivel chairs, arm chairs and rocking chairs just to give you an idea. Rattan can pretty much be customized to any style and configuration the customer wants. Many of the rattan designs come with designer cushions to complement the frame with either subtle or bold colors. When having rattan custom made, plan to own it for a while, choose your cushions, and design patterns wisely. Be sure to select colors, prints and designs that fit your personality and taste and cushions are fire retardant. You will be looking at it for a long time.
When it comes to accessories, you have a choice of wicker baskets, benches, chests, drawers, hampers, lamps, magazine racks, and vases to name a few. The choice is as endless with accessories as it is with the furniture itself.
If you are going to use it for outside furniture in a patio or garden, you cannot go wrong with rattan furniture. It is sophisticated, polished and extremely attractive. Relaxing on a beautiful rattan sofa with a glass of wine watching the impending sunset often makes life worthwhile. Here are a few reasons why one would consider purchasing rattan furniture for either indoors or outdoors besides its current popularity:
• Popularity - Rattan has been a popular choice for designers and home decorators for years and is finally gaining a huge popularity in the furniture industry as well. It has long been proven that rattan is lightweight and durable with an exotic aesthetic. It is flexible enough for both indoor and outdoor.
• Durability - This furniture serves both function and form. Rattan chairs, tables and beds not only look stylish but also are affordable and enduring. Rattan is considered one of the toughest woods in nature grown mostly in South East Asia.
• Versatility - The exotic nature of the wood makes rattan an especially appropriate for use in homes and rooms with a tropical or Asian theme. Virtually any kind of furniture can be made with rattan from tables and chairs, to desks and beds.
• Maintenance - Rattan is a natural material and living in the right environment can last for years without any type of maintenance or polishing while keeping its shape, color and strength. A periodic wipe with a damp cloth is as much maintenance as it takes.
As prices of wood furniture escalates and is becoming more expensive consider rattan as a viable alternative for decorating or redecorating your home or office. You will be surprised once you begin shopping at all the available alternatives in price, style and colors. Take your time and settle for nothing less than the best. Then buy those special pieces.