Not everyone in the apartment can meet a wicker chair, for many it will seem exotic. And yet, there are places where this kind of furniture is not only appropriate, but also becomes a real decoration of the interior. Wicker chairs are good in the country, in a country house, they are associated with rest, relaxation, calm music and a complete lack of fuss. But in city apartments you can soak up in a hanging model or fall asleep in a rocking chair.
Features and purpose
Wicker furniture came to us from antiquity. Natural material, which is always at hand, was used by craftsmen of the past, and affordable, light furniture came into every home. Times have changed, for us wickerwork has become a curiosity, and they cost a lot of money.
Furniture made of natural material is beautiful, original and light. It is used in environmental, eastern, Scandinavian, Mediterranean and other ethnic areas. Armchairs are organically integrated into the style of country, shabby chic, Provence.
Our contemporaries appreciated the beauty of weaving, used polymers and developed artificial types of materials that mimic rattan and vine. Synthetic furniture was waterproof and not fading in the sun. Such chairs can remain on the street during the entire warm season, without changing the appearance. They became popular for verandas, terraces, balconies, gazebos, as country furniture and for street cafes.
Wicker products have many advantages:
- their appearance is spectacular, unusual, diverse;
- they have a rich color palette of natural shades;
- products can be selected according to the technique of weaving;
- the seats are strong, reliable and durable;
- withstand heavy loads;
- safe and comfortable.
Of the minuses, incompatibility with modern styles, such as minimalism, high-tech, can be called. Artificial and natural materials have different technical characteristics and their advantages are different, a little later, we will specify them.
Wicker furniture is not easy to classify. It varies in shape, color, material, technique, purpose (garden, for the kitchen). The product is floor, mounted, on wheels, runners. A wicker chair is made not only from a vine or rattan, you can get a beautiful hanging product in the form of a hammock, woven from ropes using the macrame technique.
Armchairs are made in three ways:
- completely made of flexible natural material;
- from wood braided by vines, vines and other pliable raw materials;
- combined chair with any material - particleboard, metal, plastic, soft mattress, combined with weaving from natural flexible branches, vines or vines.
Conventionally, products can be divided into the following types.
Outwardly, they represent the image of a traditional familiar chair with a comfortable back and armrests, using ordinary erect legs or stable stands. Thanks to openwork weaving, they look very impressive, can withstand the heavy weight of a seated person. For convenience, they are endowed with pillows or small mattresses.
The nest chair is made in the form of a hemisphere, which is set obliquely on a wide stable stand. The back, armrests and seats form a single seamless shape. The model was invented in the middle of the last century, but did not immediately gain popularity. In our century, people have paid attention to the versatility of the product:
- putting it in the form of a chair, it is comfortable to sit in it, legs tightened;
- laying in the form of a bowl - you get a couch-bed;
- you can remove the chair from the stand and hang it on the plaits to the ceiling, and cover the stand with any plane and use it like a coffee table.
In order for the chair to swing back and forth, it is installed on special bent skids. This is a very convenient product for rest and sleep. Especially it can be appreciated by elderly people suffering from insomnia, or mothers, lulling babies. Such furniture pleasantly soothes not only with a monotonous movement, but also with the smell of natural material and its energy.
Rocking chairs have a completely different purpose: children perceive them as a toy and enjoy having fun in such chairs.
By the method of fastening, these chairs can be divided into two types: mounted to the ceiling and mounted on a rack with a suspension . If the room is compact and the ceiling is strong, it is better to use it to hang the chair, such a model will save a lot of space, in contrast to the voluminous design with a persistent stand.
To create a chair, you will need not only natural or artificial materials for weaving, but also a solid base, frame, which can be made, for example, from aluminum. Thanks to the frame basis and weaving technique, the structure can withstand heavy loads.
A chair without a frame will turn into a shapeless mass. All openwork weaving should be pulled on some basis and take on the given shape. Frames are made of the following materials:
- steel or aluminum rods;
- wooden support rails;
- thick branches of plants - rattan, willow, bamboo;
- polyurethane foam base.
The frame not only gives strength to the product, with it, weaving is much easier, the flexible material does not get tangled, it lies beautifully and efficiently, in the right direction.
Wicker products, regardless of what material they are made of, natural or artificial, look spectacular, elegant, original. But the technical characteristics of natural raw materials and polymers are significantly different. Natural raw materials are processed with special compounds to enhance water resistance and ability to resist fungi and bacteria. Unfortunately, it still cannot compete with artificial products. Let us first consider what natural material extracted in natural conditions can make amazing things.
- Rattan. It is a derivative of the raw materials of palm liana (calamus), common in Southeast Asia. The length of one shoot can reach 300 m. In the Philippines and Indonesia, locals weave a lot of things from calamus - from dishes to full houses. Its advantages include sophisticated beauty, environmental safety, lightness, durability (can withstand weight up to 120 kg) and the ability to choose shades.
- Vine. The vine is called the thin long shoots of a woody or herbaceous plant, for example, grapes, willow branches, black poplar. For wicker products, rods of many willow varieties are suitable - broom, talnik, willow, redskin, almond, as well as flexible parts of other plants. The raw materials are annual rods with a diameter of not more than 10 mm. From willow branches, which are more than three years old (20–40 mm in diameter), carcasses for chairs are made.
- The roots of conifers. The flexible roots of cedar, pine, fir, spruce go to blanks for wicker furniture. Material can be obtained during harvesting or uprooting of old trees.
- Bamboo. The grass of the cereal family, in some eastern countries, is considered a symbol of longevity and happiness, so the presence of bamboo furniture is welcome. For weaving, there is a raw material with a diameter of 5 mm, it is calibrated and heat treated. The finished product is protected with varnish, after which it is ready to serve even in the open air.
Wicker bamboo products are often purchased for street cafes, terraces and gazebos. Indoors, they also look great, have a natural color and are able to support many interior styles.
This is not the whole list of natural materials used to create furniture. Armchairs made from natural raw materials carry a special energy, they are environmentally friendly, reliable, durable with proper care, have many shades, can withstand weight up to 120 kg. But they also have negative properties:
- natural material is sensitive to frost;
- ultraviolet rays;
- frequent active moisture.
This means that many of them are prone to swelling, drying out and changing color, for a long time in the conditions of the street it is better not to leave them. Wicker furniture should not be placed on radiators and fireplaces indoors.
Very different characteristics for armchairs woven from artificial materials made on the basis of polymers with the addition of rubber. For weaving, synthetic ribbons of different widths and lengths are used. Such products are safe, they do not contain toxic impurities, respond well to frost and plenty of moisture, have a variety of colors and do not fade in the sun. Armchairs can withstand loads of up to 400 kg, they are unpretentious in care and are much cheaper than natural products. Artificial rattan furniture is used in street conditions where it can stay throughout the season.
In addition to plants and polymers, for weaving furniture, ropes, nylon and natural threads are often used. The weaving technique of these materials is called macrame. Armchairs made of threads look more elegant and comfortable.
Shapes and sizes
The dimensions of the chairs can be very different - from tiny children's to spacious thrones with high backs, designed for people with a lot of weight. The average dimensions of a rocking chair have the following parameters: 600–750 mm wide, 600–1200 mm deep, and 900–1400 mm high. And the diameter of the pillow for the chair Papasan in the standard version is 110 cm.
A variety of shapes (square, round, oval) makes it possible to choose a chair in any interior in accordance with the taste of the owner or the designer's intention:
- the egg chair allows you to feel protected;
- pendant in the form of a drop;
- designer chairs have an unusual shape;
- the model is made in the shape of a peacock tail;
- in the shape of a throne.
It may seem to some that the natural material is monotonous and faceless. This is an erroneous opinion, it simply does not have flashy and poisonous shades. The colors of nature are soft, comfortable and perfect. At the same time, they are diverse, except for black and white, you can find an extensive palette of colors, contrasting models made of several tones of natural material are especially beautiful. Consider examples of chairs in different colors:
- hanging green models: one is made in the shape of an apple, the other follows the shape of a fig;
- white classic armchair;
- orange color can become an accent spot in the interior;
- the yellow straw color looks very natural;
- brown model with a chestnut tint;
- with notes of a reddish tone;
- a dark brown, in fact black product;
- examples of combined chairs made from different types of natural materials.
The rattan furniture of the Philippines and Malaysia, where Calamus grows, has gained world fame. But higher quality (virtually seamless) and a variety of woven products are produced in factories in Germany, Spain, Italy.
The well-known Swedish company IKEA produces armchairs made of natural material of various types, for children and adults. Products from the Swedish factories Kwa, Brafab, as well as the Dutch company Azzura are popular on the Russian market.
Well-established domestic company Rammus with products from ecotang.
Choosing a wicker chair you need to determine its purpose and location. If the model is purchased for the veranda, gazebo, balcony, it is better to choose an artificial rattan. For a children's room, natural, environmentally friendly materials are preferable. Children love toy chairs - swinging, rotating, hanging. For a state of relaxation, a rocking chair is suitable. The dining area will need classic options. It is important that the chair meets the style of the interior.
When choosing a product, you should pay attention so that it contains as few seams as possible, without any protruding elements. It is worth asking what raw material the product is made from, what material is used for the frame - this affects the strength and durability of the product.
Wicker furniture does not require special care. Natural products should be washed periodically with a soapy solution, then dried. A brush with a gentle brush helps to clean the dirt from the grooves. With artificial models you can not stand on ceremony, they are not harmed by pre-soaking, a stiff brush and a good shower.
With the help of weaving, they create not only lace and knitwear, but also masterpieces of furniture, this can be seen by looking at beautiful examples:
- extraordinary chair of amazing shape;
- bright comfortable set: chair and pouf.
See how to weave a rattan chair, see below.