Wicker Outdoor Furniture
A Brief History The word wicker refers to a finely woven hard material typically found most often in wicker outdoor furniture. The word itself has been around for centuries but the majority of furniture pieces constructed today utilize wicker as the primary raw material for construction. The natural category of wicker encompasses many common natural fibers such as cane, reed, bamboo, rattan, and their synthetic counterparts. Outdoor wicker furniture is often created with other materials such as stainless steel, aluminum and melamine plastic. A Brief History Wicker outdoor furniture was originally used in the early 1900's by wealthy families to furnish their outdoor rooms. As more people began to enjoy the luxuries of indoor living, wicker became an affordable alternative to wood furniture. Today, most outdoor wicker furniture in the United States is made using a combination of resin and polyethylene fibers. Resin is a natural fibrous material that is injected into a mould from a pre-cut piece of wood. Once secured, the mould is filled with natural wicker furniture cushions that are then permanently affixed to the back of the mould. Today, wicker outdoor furniture is commonly made using either galvanized steel or melamine plastic. The reason for the switch from wood to synthetic materials is the ease in which the final product is created.
Typically, the weaving is not required as the final result will be quite solid. In the case of synthetic wicker outdoor furniture, the weaving is performed after the raw material is supplied. This results in a more durable finish that is free from the unsightly cracking and peeling that can occur when natural rattan furniture is exposed to the elements. Another benefit of synthetic wicker outdoor furniture is the durability associated with the material. Both resin and melamine plastic wicker outdoor furniture are extremely durable and should last the test of time with proper care. However, both materials are prone to damage. Resin can be damaged by exposure to the sun, while plastic tends to crack and fade over time. With all-weather wicker outdoor furniture, there is no concern with the potential for mildew or damage due to extreme temperatures. These all-weather pieces are able to withstand temperatures as low as -50 degrees Fahrenheit, which makes them a great selection for any type of outdoor patio furniture. Additionally, teak patio furniture is able to withstand exposure to salt spray, making it a popular selection for coastal areas. Most patio furniture made from teak is treated with a water repellent sealer to prevent fading and cracking caused by exposure to the elements. One of the biggest drawbacks of wicker outdoor furniture is the cost. While synthetic wicker furniture is less expensive than traditional wicker construction, the former still tends to be more expensive. Resin wicker outdoor furniture tends to be cheaper than that made from all-weather teak, although you do have to be prepared to pay slightly higher prices for this type of furniture. However, if you want a wicker patio set, this may be the better option. You get the beauty and durability of the all-weather material with the durability of the resin wicker. Wrought aluminum is the most expensive type of outdoor furniture, but it offers the most options when it comes to design and color. It is often made in a standard size but wrought aluminum patio sets are also available in other sizes, so you can always find a set that will fit your space perfectly. The wrought aluminum frames of wrought aluminum furniture tend to be sturdier than those of the other types of materials, but this isn't always the case. Some manufacturers of wrought aluminum patio sets have seen improvements in their products over the years, but some consumers have seen inferior construction. It really depends on what you are looking for in a set. These are some of the different types of outdoor furniture items might encounter in your local stores. Each manufacturer designs them differently, so it would be best if you take the time to compare each one so you could make an informed decision regarding which one you'd like to purchase. Just be sure to check the warranty before making your final purchase, because these outdoor furniture items might not last as long as you expect. Check for reviews, and ask others who have purchased the exact same set you are interested in. By doing so, you will be able to find out which brands are rated highly by both professionals and consumers.