Rattan Furniture : A Bridge to the Past

What draws me towards Rattan products such as sofas, chairs, buffets, tables, basically anything made with rattan, is their unmatched elegance and their unique handcrafted quality.
BY Nandita Agrawal on March 31, 2019

Mirror mirror on the wall, who is the fairest of them all?

If the mirror is in a furniture store, it will most likely say, rattan. I bet you are not surprised. Rattan furniture is my current favourite because it has an incredible aesthetic appeal!

rattan kernig krafts furniture swatch wicker
Rattan is mesmerizing!

What draws me towards Rattan products such as sofas, chairs, buffets, tables, basically anything made with rattan, is their unmatched elegance and their unique handcrafted quality. There are some furniture items that never go out of style and if you choose to buy outdoor furniture crafted out of rattan for your garden, chances are that decades will pass but you will never get bored of it!

Whether it’s your carefully curated patio, your comfortable drawing room, your cozy café or swanky bar, you can rely on your chic rattan furniture to instantly make your space look classy and sophisticated.

The Difference Between Rattan and Wicker 

Rattan is often confused with wicker but they are two completely different things. Natural rattan is a tropical climbing palm with tough and thin stems. These stems are woven together to create rattan material that is used to make furniture. This age-old technique of weaving is called wicker and it is used even now to make exceptional furniture items. I’m sure you are picturing your grandma’s comfy chair, right now!

It is not necessary that all wicker products are made of rattan. Rattan is a material whereas wicker, a technique. Bamboo and even synthetic fibres are often used to make wicker furniture, but rattan wicker is a universally loved classic. 

synthetic wicker plastic colonial shabby chic sofa
Shabby Chic! Plastic Wicker Sofa by Kernig Krafts

Why I love Rattan and You Would Too

  • It is handcrafted awesomeness.   These days when you go out to buy something there is an excellent chance that almost every product you lay your eyes on has “Made in China” stamped on it. The moment you realise that this delightful piece is not exclusively made and there are thousands of pieces like this item, your heart sinks a little. Handmade items of furniture carry with them a story that is embedded in every inch of them. Made by skilled craftsmen, persevering to preserve their art, their exquisiteness is a big enough reason to gravitate towards them. 
  • Figures in the furniture trends of 2019.  Another reason to favour them is that handcrafted products are a hot favourite of 2019! A budding trend, soon you will spot these beauties in all trendy cafés, bistros and bars! If you are an entrepreneur looking for furniture for your next project, however big or small, I recommend taking a look at these stylish rattan pieces. 
  • Versatile material for any theme.   Think of your favourite decoration style. Colonial? Shabby chic? Classic? Rattan can be incorporated in all of these styles. For shabby chic style, rattan can be used to make chairs with distress finished wood, upholstered in fresh florals. Delicate hand carving will make the chairs look all the more charming! For classic style of decoration, a dark stain on the wood would be perfect. The contrast of rattan with the dark color of wood will make the chairs stand out in any setting. If minimalist design is what you prefer, a rattan sofa with natural wood stain, would keep the color palette monochromatic and would complement your interiors well, blending in effortlessly. 
solid wood rattan wicker chair kernig krafts
Dark stain on wood gives this chair by Kernig Krafts a classy look!
  • It will make your café cozy and your bar jazzy.  Chairs, sofas, buffets/sideboards, headboards, coffee tables, bar chairs, stools anything can be made with rattan in various designs. If you cannot find the kind of pieces you are looking for, you can go for custom made rattan furniture. Customization would allow you to create your own designs based on your interior decoration theme and budget, and is especially useful when you have specific ideas in your mind for your upcoming project. Whether it’s a restaurant, a hotel, a bar, a café or a bistro that you are planning to open, rattan can be used to make an interesting range of furniture items. Depending on your decoration style and theme there can be numerous designs and various ways to combine rattan and wood. For simple yet eye-catching interiors, natural stains and distress finish can be used. For an intense, moody look go for dark stains, and rustic finish. 
  • Your friends would not want to leave your house.  In homes and apartments, rattan makes a big impact. Rattan furniture in any space, creates warmth and comfort and can be as ornate or as minimal as you want it to be. The undeniable nostalgia it creates is calming and hence perfect for your living room. Nothing can beat rattan lounge seating! The furniture can be made to look striking if you use patterned upholstery or bright colours but I like subtle neutrals best with it and maybe just a splash of dainty florals, if you want to add color. 
  • Rattan furniture can be really light weight. For those looking for easily movable furniture, rattan is a godsend. If you own a bistro with outdoor seating or have a patio at home, a kids room or a swimming pool, rattan is an excellent choice. For outdoor seating you can buy furniture made out of rattan and a light weight wood such as Mango wood, Steam Beech wood, Teak etc. as it will be practically weightless. Kids move around a lot and so does the furniture in their room! To make your life easy, you can get custom made kids chairs that are fun yet stylish. Add brightness to their room with colourful striped or printed canvas upholstery. As the kids grow up they might want to change the look of their room, just by changing the cushions or upholstery, you can create a whole new look for them!
rattan wicker sideboard cafe furniture kernig krafts
Photo : unknown
  • It will get you so many compliments (and customers). What makes people go to a restaurant again and again? The food, certainly, but the ambience plays an equally important role! If the place is warm and welcoming it is easy to develop a loyal customer base. The weaving in rattan furniture looks gorgeous and the handmade characteristic it has gives it a unique, inviting vibe! When furnishing a commercial space people often compromise on the furniture or do not give it the attention it deserves. I’d suggest, plan your interiors well and decorate your place with attractive, comfortable furniture. The right kind of furniture will create a relaxed, pleasant environment and your customers will never feel like leaving your café or bar! 
  • Dress it up or dress it down.   Rattan furniture can be used with or without upholstery! To dress up your rattan chairs and sofas you can buy cushions that go with your theme of decoration. For example, leather would suit a bar or a restaurant. Tropical leaves, stripes and delicate florals can beautify a café or restaurant effortlessly while giving the place an interesting flavour!
  • It needs very little to maintain its good looks.  Rattan doesn’t need much to be maintained. Just wipe off dust with a damp cloth and leave it to dry in the sun, if possible. Since rattan is a tropical vine it needs a particular level of humidity. Avoid keeping rattan chairs, tables and sofas in direct sunlight for prolonged hours and periodically use a humidifier around the furniture if you live in an area which has dry climate. To avoid fading of the fibres, you can rotate your furniture from time to time. 

Now, that you have warmed up to rattan, take a look at some spectacular wicker pieces here. Buying rattan furniture is a decision that you won’t regret! 

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