A piece of furniture made from wickerwork, carries with it an aesthetic appeal like no other. The intricate patterns created by intertwining plant materials like bamboo, willow, reed, etc., is what makes it stand out. Today, synthetic materials like plastic or resin are also used to make wicker furniture. There are several advantages associated with this type of furniture. They are lightweight, flexible, comfortable to lounge in, and can be moved around easily. Even though it is a durable material and can tolerate considerable wear and tear, it does need a little love and attention every now and then.
How to Repair Wicker Furniture
Most cases of repairing a wicker chair can be done at home. You have to procure a few materials like sandpaper, varnish or lacquer, linseed oil, epoxy resin, replacement strands, and glue. The most common wicker furniture problems (and solutions) are addressed below:
Because some wicker strands come undone over a period of time, it can produce a rough texture. To get rid of this problem, you can sand its surface with the help of fine grit sandpaper. While sanding these rough spots, take care that you rub the sandpaper with a gentle hand. Sanding should be followed by applying lacquer or varnish to finish the surface. Avoid any polyurethane-based finishes, since they are inflexible and do not go with a wicker chair's work; cracks are likely to appear.
Old wicker furniture may reveal a series of cracks after prolonged usage. This is usually the case when wicker strands dry up. To supply moisture to the wicker surface, soak it in linseed oil. Apply a generous amount of oil on the affected area with a clean piece of cloth. Dab some oil over cracks and within weave gaps as well. Wait for 24 hours for the oil to get absorbed. Take a close look at the cracks; if they are still visible, then you have to apply the oil one more time. Otherwise, wipe the surface with a clean piece of cloth.
If your patio furniture gets wet in the rain, its weaves will displace from their original position. To the restore the original shape of the weave, you'll need to wet the area. Then, make suitable adjustments to the damp strands of the weave, using your fingers. Finally, allow it to dry. When it dries up, you will find that the original shape and form of the weave, has been reestablished. This happens because wicker changes shape depending on how moisture affects it.
Resin wicker furniture can withstand most harsh conditions. It suffers damage only when the resin seal on its surface wears out. Therefore, you have to seal the damaged spot using epoxy resin. Choose an epoxy that has a light tint and is resistant to moisture. Mix the resin and the hardener as per the instructions provided by the manufacturer. Apply it on the cracks with the help of a pointy tool and then leave it to dry for at least 24 hours. If there are some loose strands, then you can secure them to the frame using the epoxy.
To replace undone wicket strands, you have to turn the chair upside down and snip the damaged strands. Pull them out and take each one's measurement, before replacing the strands with new ones. First, soak the replacement strands in water for 20 minutes, before weaving each one through the underside of the wicker chair; imitate its present pattern. While weaving, make sure to tighten each one properly to the existing strands. Finally, fix the ends of the strands using waterproof glue.
Spending time on repairing your wicker chairs will prove to be a cost-effective option; in case you can't do it yourself, feel free to contact professional help. A lot of people use plastic wicker chairs instead of actual ones, which are fairly easier to take care of. But that doesn't mean you should toss away the wicker furniture you already have; mend and look after them, addressing problems as soon as they're noticed.