Apr21

What is rattan furniture

Rattan garden furniture covers a broad range of materials. Essentially it is a synthetic rattan (in PE polyethylene form) which is designed for permanent outdoor and high sunlight use. The materials used included:

 

  • the rattan fibre (weaving material)
  • the alloy frame and associated welding techniques
  • powder coating
  • weavers manually create the product
  • cushions and fabrics

 

The market in the UK is fragmented. 90% of the market is flooded with cheap PVC and polyester fabric cushions using indoor foams and 1.2mm gauge alloy. It is a fact that all rattan furniture uses alloy due to it's strength and light weight. All rattan furniture is made in various parts of Asia. There are German, Italian and French vendors all claiming European this and that but no rattan garden product is manufactured in Europe because there is simply no skill base and labour costs are too high. Some of our products take 27 days to weave!

We believe a good product will use a German, branded rattan fibre. The frame should be greater than 1.5mm, that the best weavers in the world originated in Cebu. That solution dyed acrylics are the best performance fabrics and reticulated foams should be used in marine applications. Ask your vendor whether their furniture stacks up. At the low end of the market, cheap means just that. There is no such thing as a bargain in this industry. However there is some very expensive product that is lacking in what we think are quality materials.

Why is all of this so important? Because a product using poor materials will be woven hastily and poorly and one break will result in the product failing. The truth about rattan furniture is that it can be a beautiful addition to the garden, poolside or deck with longevity of a decade or more (our materials are warranted for 7/10 years by the manufacturer) however you get what you pay for to a point. In many respects Europe is fortunate to have relatively low U.V levels. In Australia and New Zealand, where our furniture originated, the mostly low spec furniture sold here would break down in 18 months. If you are a discerning buyer, please ask your vendor to support their claims relating to their outdoor furniture.

 

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