Wicker furniture is very popular worldwide, mainly because of the way it looks and enhances just about any room and because of the variety in designs and styles. It is used for indoors, in the bedroom, the lounge, the living room. You can find set pieces or decorative pieces. On the other hand it is also used outdoors, in your patio as a furniture set or woven baskets and such.
Wicker is type of furniture where the material is woven around a frame. A chair for example will have a frame made of the legs, the back and the seat. Fibers, that can be bamboo, rattan, willow or others, will be woven round the frame providing typically the back rest and the seat itself.
As with most things in life, if you take good are of it your furniture will last much longer.
The first thing is cleaning and dusting. Whether your furniture is outdoors or indoors it will gather dust. Make sure you dust it regularly with a dry, clean cloth. Gently does it. You should never apply harsh cleaning agents. You should also run a small brush over the areas where dust accumulates, typically in amongst the weave. This is perhaps the best way to make your wicker last longer as you are preventing accumulation and the potential need for stronger measures.
You can also wash your furniture, but here only use a little water and mild soap. It is important that you use very little water and make sure you dry it well – whatever you do, do not apply pressure (for example sit on a wicker chair) if it is still wet. You will damage the woven material and stretch it.
Outdoor furniture will be affected by the sun, the rain, the temperature changes and this is natural. With normal cleaning you will help your furniture and also a good idea when it is not in use, is to cover it or store it out of the way.
Damage to the weave can occur in time. Typically this will be in the form Indoor Wicker Furniture of loose strands within the weave and even cracks on pieces that are subjected to dryness. Or as a result of age.
If the damage is extensive, don’t hesitate and call an expert.
For less extensive damage, here are a few things you can do.
1. You can apply linseed oil to restore its natural humidity. Let it rest for a day or two as it absorbs the oil.
2. For loose strands of weave a gentle rubbing, and I stress gentle, with a fine grit sandpaper over the rough area.
3. Wicker, like leather, when wet will memorize the shape in which it dries. Sometimes you will find the weave has shifted or sagged. You can wet it, again carefully, and stretch so it dries in that position, recovering the original form.
4. Strands that have broken or become unattached can be a problem. As long as it is not extensive damage, your best bet is to get hold of the same material and weave. If you are not comfortable with the idea you will have to find an expert. However if you decide to proceed with the repair make sure it is a small area and then careful, and very patiently, try it out, one weave at a time.