Rattan is a close relative of the palm tree; it is a type of vine that grows in the jungles of the South Eastern region and is one of the strongest woods available. It’s really hard to break, very durable and the peel is commonly used to bind the furniture together.Wicker on the other hand, isn’t a material but rather a technique used to manufacture products out of materials like rattan, willow, bamboo, straw and rush. Such natural materials are made wet and are then woven to create wicker furniture.So rattan is a product and wicker is the technique used to manufacture the furniture. Wicker garden furniture is hugely popular choice– it’s easy to maintain, contemporary and robust; but if you want solid durability and versatility, rattan furniture is your ideal choice.
Rattan garden sets are among the most popular types of garden furniture for many years due to their timeless elegance, high level of comfort and ease of maintenance. In the recent years, however, home owners were also given the ability to choose synthetic rattan furniture which at a first glance looks almost identical to the natural rattan sets. This has caused some confusion among home owners many of which wonder which one to choose. If you are having the same dilemma, you can make your decision easier by taking into account the following factors:
Aesthetic appeal. As already mentioned earlier, synthetic rattan garden sets often look as they would be made from natural rattan. They are woven in the same way, come in a variety of designs, styles and shapes, and give your garden a highly elegant look. Many people, however, claim that man-made materials lack the character which is reflected by the natural ones. This is of course a matter of personal taste but natural materials are considered more classy and prestigious than the synthetic ones by most people.
Comfort. The level of comfort the chosen garden set provides is just as important as its aesthetic appeal because a beautiful but uncomfortable outdoor area is of little use. Both natural and synthetic rattan garden sets are typically used with cushions and pillows which is why there is little or no difference in the comfort factor between both types of rattan garden sets.
Durability. Synthetic rattan garden sets are often claimed to be more durable than the ones which are made from natural rattan, however, these are just as durable as the synthetic ones if cared for properly.
Resistance to the outdoor elements. Natural rattan does not withstand the outdoor elements particularly well and is vulnerable to the effects of moisture. If frequently soaked or stored in a damp place, natural rattan sets can be affected by mould. In addition to moisture, the beauty and durability of natural rattan can also be affected by exposure to direct sunlight. Synthetic rattan, on the other hand, is resistant to all outdoor elements because it is most often made from some type of plastic which cannot be affected by mould, rust or wood-eating insects. It is usually also claimed to be resistant to ultraviolet light although most types of plastic fade if exposed to the sun for prolonged periods of time. However, natural rattan can also be made weather-proof by a thin coat of lacquer or water sealant.
However, the big question we’ve been getting from our customers since we launched our poly-rattan range is there’s no obvious weaknesses with natural rattan so why is there a need for a synthetic rattan?
Rattan furniture is continuously growing in popularity and a lot of furniture manufacturers wanted achieve the distinctive look and feel of natural rattan but for a fraction of the cost.
Manufacturers have developed a synthetic rattan furniture that still maintains the general look and feel of natural rattan together with the long lasting durability of the real thing.
They usually start by making the synthetic rattan furniture with a sturdy aluminum frame then instead of wrapping the frame with the natural rattan cane they make use of plastics and resin to create the form.
The plastic material is also extremely malleable and easy to shape, plus its available in a wide array of shades and colours. And I have to be honest with you, the good thing with the synthetic varieties is that they still maintain that strength of the natural rattan too.
The plastic or synthetic rattan look furniture is strong and, if properly looked after, will last you an incredibly long time. Also, it is very easy to clean with just warm water and washing up liquid when needed and it is not susceptible to any rust like iron garden furniture or mold like the natural rattan.