Tips on Buying Wicker Patio Furniture in Coastal Environments

Barlow Tyrie Deep Seating Daybed and Ottoman designed by Vladimir Kagan 

Wicker furniture is a classic choice for furnishing porches and patios, coordinating well with both traditional and modern styles. For homes located close to the ocean and its salty sea air, you will want to make sure the wicker furniture you purchase is durable enough to stand up to this challenging climate.

Selecting the right kind of wicker

Wicker patio furniture in the past was made of various natural materials such as willow, rattan, bamboo, or reed. The advantage to wicker is that it can have a beautiful natural look or can be painted. It can also be paired with colorful cushions to match any décor and it is light weight, making it easy to move around on a patio or take inside when the weather turns cold.

Now, wicker made for outdoor use, is usually made of synthetic material that is designed to resist fading and to reduce flaking and cracking caused by sun exposure. Purchasing wicker furniture that is made with synthetics will extend the life of the wicker pieces, reducing sun damage and even water damage.

What to avoid when buying wicker

There are plenty of places to shop for wicker online, but when it comes time to buy make sure you’re getting a quality product. The difference in quality is the reason why some sets costs three to four times more than others. Here are a few things to look for to weed out the cheaply made wicker from the quality wicker products that will last you many years.

Beware of cheap synthetic – Low quality PVC is the choice for cheap wicker furniture manufacturers instead of the higher quality Polyethylene. PVC breaks down faster, is toxic to the environment and is not recyclable.

Beware of cheap frames – Cheap sets will use thin steel instead of high grade aluminum to make their wicker frames. Steel will rust, especially on Cape Cod, aluminum will not.

Beware of glossy wicker strands – If the wicker has a slick, plastic look, instead of resembling a more natural look, it is probably cheaply made. A good rule of thumb is to go for a textured and more natural look instead of the glossy wicker.

Have an eye for style – Patio furniture is an investment you can use for years. A nicely designed sofa set will bring you much more enjoyment if you go for a style you like. A design that's "just ok" or "good enough" can look out of place with your other furniture. Remember that synthetic wicker furniture is designed to last a long time. Choose a design that you will love for years over the one that you only like a little.

Making wicker furniture last

To keep wicker patio furniture in good condition, remember to wipe and dust. Clean spills immediately to prevent staining.  To clean more thoroughly use a mild detergent and water on a soft cloth.

Island Lifestyles offers resin wicker comfort seating and dining furniture that is made to withstand tough coastal environments. Compared to natural wicker, today's wicker products are resistant to color fading, cracking and peeling. It's a durable choice that requires little to no maintenance and often comes with an unseen aluminum frame for enhanced strength. Contact us today for more information about our different wicker sets.