Frequently asked questions about wicker

What is Polyethylene rattan?

Polyethylene rattan is an all weather material, making this a great product to choose when shopping for outdoor furniture.

Wicker and Rattan: What’s the Difference?

Sometimes customers get confused by the difference between wicker and rattan outdoor furniture.

In broad terms they describe much the same thing. More specifically, wicker refers to the woven construction method by which these items are made, while rattan refers to the material used for weaving. Rattan originally referred to a natural fibre harvested from a family of palms in Southeast Asia. These days we use a more modern, lightweight, synthetic material called polyethylene rattan. At Bali Wicker we use Viro Tech.  This material is more resistant to both ultraviolet light and water, and avoids contributing to the over-exploitation of the world’s natural rattan resources. To add to the confusion between the two phrases, synthetic rattan is also sometimes referred to as resin wicker.

What are the Benefits and Characteristics of Polyethylene Rattan?

Rattan is not as heavy as teak or other wooden furniture and it doesn’t stain and corrode like aluminium and other metal furniture. You can choose from a wide range of price options, colours and weaves. There are a variety of shapes and sizes when it comes to rattan furniture and most pieces come complete with plush cushions for comfort and style.

What is the difference between aluminium and stainless steel frames?

Aluminium is the second most widely used metal in the world and will not rust! It will oxidise over time, but this won’t compromise the material’s strength. Because it doesn’t rust, aluminium is a popular choice when it comes to manufacturing outdoor furniture frames.

It’s a lightweight material, however some manufacturers use aluminium that is too thin or a poor quality. Look for outdoor furniture built with an aluminium frame with a gauge of at least 1.2mm.

Wicker furniture can also be built with a stainless steel frame to save money. This is still a durable material, however it will rust over time. An aluminium frame is better. 

Powder coating is a process which helps to maintain and protect outdoor furniture from the elements.

Powder coating is an environmentally safe process, is extremely durable and will help resist chipping, rust or colour fading from the sun. Powder coating is a mostly cosmetic process on wicker furniture built on quality aluminium frames: the uncoated material is already very resistant to corrosion.