If you are thinking about investing in some rattan furniture, whether it’s for a conservatory or to furnish other rooms in your home, you may have wondered how durable and sturdy this often lightweight furniture is. For centuries, wicker has been used to make furniture and other items with pieces that date back to the Egyptian Empire, having survived and which can be seen on display in museums around the world. Today, rattan and wicker furniture is incredibly durable because it is hand-made to a very high standard.
Cleverly weaved to produce stylish and durable furniture
The Three Stages of Rattan Furniture Production:
There’s an art to making good quality rattan furniture which involves a lot of technique and patience. The three typical stages of production are as follows:
Making the Frames
The first stage is to steam large rattan poles so they can be bent and shaped into the design of the furniture. Normally this is done using either a mould or a jig. Once the rattan is dry, the pieces are then assembled to form the frame. Some manufacturers use nails to hold the different parts of the frame together, whereas some others will use screws. However, after this has been done, the frame is wrapped with rattan “peel,” which neatly covers and hides the joins, adding that very attractive decorative appeal to the furniture.
The weaving is done by hand and can take up to four days to complete, but this depends on the design and how complex it happens to be. There are two weaves; one being open, which is spaced, and the other being closed, which is a very tight weave. The tighter the weave, the more expensive the item of furniture usually is because it takes longer to make.
Rattan and wicker furniture is made completely by hand
Good quality rattan and wicker furniture boast several steps in the finishing process, which includes a lot of sanding in between each of the steps. The first step, however, involves smoothing off the rattan, which is called “de-burring” it. Once this has been done, the rattan is sanded for the first of many times followed by a lot more finishing off which involves:
- A first color coat is applied to the rattan
- A second sanding is done
- A second color coat is then applied
- A third sanding is done
- The rattan is then lacquered
A reputable company will always go that extra mile using only the best quality, mature rattan strands which ensure their furniture is sturdy and durable. The rattan should also have been bleached before it’s used to make the furniture because this is the only way the rattan has a beautiful, even color to it. The furniture should also be reinforced by having cross-braces, which adds even more stability. The other thing to look out for is whether or not the feet boast being fitted with glides, which are invaluable because it means the furniture will not scratch your floors.
Taking Care of Your Rattan Furniture:
Rattan and wicker furniture is durable, but because it is a natural material, it is never a good idea to leave it out in the elements. However, you can buy “all-weather” wicker and rattan furniture. The two things that damage this lovely furniture are rain and sunlight, which are its two worst enemies.
Cleaning rattan furniture is simple and involves a little vacuuming to remove any dust that might have collected in the crevices and an occasional wipe over with some soapy water to keep it looking in pristine condition. If you notice any mold forming on the rattan, it’s not the end of the world because all you have to do is use some diluted bleach to wipe it away. It’s also a good idea to give your furniture a new coat of lacquer every few years.
Being hand-made, rattan furniture offers you real value for money, and with all the beautiful new and innovative designs to choose from, finding the right style of furniture to suit a home has been made a whole lot easier. Whether you’d like to create an ultra-modern feel to your home or maybe something a little more traditional, sourcing rattan furniture online will save you a whole lot of money and add a lovely cachet of style to your property.