Outdoor fabric is a broad category full of everything you can imagine! However, not every outdoor fabric is suitable for every outdoor use, so how do you know which fabric will work best for your project?
6 Factors to Consider When Selecting an Outdoor Fabric
Breathability: The level of breathability is determined by how easily air can pass through a fabric. Breathability is important to consider for any outdoor project but is especially key for two reasons: covers and seating. In airtight enclosures and covers, a non-breathable fabric could lead to mold and mildew. For seating, a breathable cushion will be more comfortable (less sticky!) especially during hot summer months.
Water Resistance: Water resistance measures how much water will bead and roll off the fabric surface. Often, water resistance and breathability are trade-offs. Typically fabrics that don’t breath well are more water resistant and those that do not breathe at all are considered waterproof (generally vinyl-coated or laminated fabrics). Water resistance is more important for applications like awnings, furniture covers, and boat interiors than it is for patio furniture, where cushions can be brought in and out of the rain.
Abrasion Resistance: Abrasion resistance describes how well a fabric will hold up to abrasion under tension. Abrasion-resistant outdoor fabrics for outdoor cover applications are usually heavy, stiff, and often coated with vinyl or other resins. For abrasion resistance with a softer look and hand, go with an outdoor upholstery fabric.
UV Resistance: UV resistance is perhaps the most important factor in an outdoor fabric and the simplest. The higher the UV resistance the longer the fabric will last when exposed to sunlight. The importance of UV resistance increases for applications that will see more sunlight as opposed to applications that would stay in the shade the majority of the time.
Colorfastness: The more colorfast a fabric, the less likely the pattern or color will fade or bleed. A fabric’s colorfastness is determined by how well it holds color over years of exposure to sun, rain, and snow. Colorfastness is more of an aesthetic factor but is important to consider if using vibrant colors for awnings, covers, and cushions.
Clean-ability: While clean-ability might seem less important for outdoor fabrics as opposed to indoor, cleaning your outdoor fabrics is crucial to their longevity. Clean-ability stands for how well a fabric releases dirt from the weave. Mold and mildew can grow on dirt that is trapped in the fabric weave. In general, fabrics with a single-side coating do not release dirt well. To combat this, inspect those fabrics frequently and clean them often.
Selecting the right fabric for your outdoor project can be a balance of weighing the pros and cons of each of these six factors. Need help with the cushions? Call us, we have resources for you right under our roof!
This gallery contains 41 photos.
This gallery contains 44 photos.
Furniture has a very boring definition, it is: the movable objects intended to support various human activities such as seating and sleeping. Furniture is also used to hold objects at a convenient height for work (as horizontal surfaces above the ground), or to store things. BLAH!!! Furniture defined as I think it should be is a product of design and is considered a form of decorative art. In addition to furniture’s functional role, it can serve a symbolic, decorative or statement role. It can be made from many materials, including metal, plastic, and wood. Furniture can be made and re-made to reflect culture, trends, design aesthetic or current décor. Furniture terms can also be overwhelming so here we thought we would start you with a few terms to help you decipher what you may have heard or maybe put a name to a piece you have seen and loved.
Here are just a sampling!
Abrasion Wear: Distress or wear marks on fabrics, wood or metal. Created when a furniture or accessory surface experiences friction in use or handling
Acroterium: Originally an ornament on the roof corners of Greek temples. In classical furniture, similar ornaments applied to the top corners of secretaries, bookcases, highboys and other furniture.
Adam Style: British neoclassical style that predominated during the latter half of the 1700′s. This style developed out of reaction to the more fanciful rococo style of the 1750′s, and is characterized by slender, graceful lines, refined shapes and restrained ornamentation
American Colonial: Term loosely applied to all American furniture used by the colonies prior to the American Revolution. This style includes rough handmade pieces of the early American frontier,
American Primitive: This style of late 1700′s to 1800′s was created to meet the demands of the western frontier. Noted pieces include wagon seat twin chairs, sinks without plumbing, cupboards and cobbler’s benches. Woods primarily used included ash, hickory, maple, black walnut and pine. Pieces of this period were usually painted black or in primary colors.
Antique: Could be anything ranging from a piece of furniture to art. The U.S. government considers any item over 100 years old to be an antique, whereas most collectors use 50 years as a benchmark
Art Nouveau: Decorative style developed in France between 1890 and 1910. Tiffany lamps are a great example of this styles ornate and flowing lines.
Arts & Crafts: Also commonly known as Mission style. This style was popular from the late 1800′s through the 1920′s. The Arts and Crafts movement was a reaction against the mass-produced and ornate Victorian furniture of that time.
Asian Style: A general term referring to styles of the Far East. Such as Chinese, Japanese, or Korean designs for example. Furniture with Asian characteristics are popular as a subset of contemporary style.
Bachelor’s Chest: A small low chest originating in the 1700′s
Bag Table: 18th Century serving table with drawers and a cloth bag attached
Ball & Claw: A carved lions or birds claw clutching a sphere, usually at the end of a cabriole leg or tables base.
Ball Foot: The rounded end of a turned leg having a hooded effect
Barley Twist: A furniture leg that’s turned so that it resembles a screw thread.
Baroque: A highly ornate decorative style that originated in Italy in the 1600′s. The style is characterized by irregular curves, twisted columns, elaborate scrolls and oversize moldings. The Italian equivalent of French “rococo”.
Barrel Back: A chair or sofa with the arms and back forming a continuous curve.
Barrel Chair: A semicircular upholstered chair with a loose seat cushion
Brewster Chair: An American Colonial style chair with large turned posts and spindles. Named for Governor Brewster of Massachusetts
Butterfly Table: A small drop-leaf table whose leaves are supported by a swinging support resembling a butterfly wing on a rudder.
Cabriole Leg: A decorative S-shaped table or chair leg that curves outward at the knee then tapers at the ankle. Commonly found on Queen Anne, Chippendale and other 18th Century pieces. Often seen with ball and claw feet
Canapé: A type of French settee with padded back and seat, open arms, and a decorated frame. Most commonly associated with Louis the XV design
Casing: An enclosing frame around a door or window opening
Chambray: A popular variety of cotton fabric that combines colored warp and white filling yarns in a plain weave
Checks: Splits or cracks in wood, which are ordinarily caused by seasoning. A common characteristic of genuine cherry wood pieces.
Chesser: A combination of a dresser and a chest. Chessers are narrower than a dresser and shorter than a chest, and normally have a small tilting mirror
Coffer: A multi-functional traveling chest with handles and a domed lid but without feet, usually made of oak. Term can also refer to a chest or box covered in leather or some other material and banded with metalwork.
Colonial Revival: Reproductions of classic American styles from the 1700′s, although not always accurate in detail. Revival pieces were popular from the late 1800′s through the early 1900′s. Also known as just “Revival”.
Credence Table: A type of small table used for storing food before serving; generally a semi-circular table with a hinged top.
Credenza: Normally a sideboard or buffet. In office furniture, credenzas are a horizontal filing cabinet that may also feature doors or shelves for storage, often placed behind a desk.
This gallery contains 43 photos.
After the Leesburg Flower and Garden show come out to On A Whim in Lucketts and see what’s new!