Now that the weather is warm, and we are spending more time outside, how’s your outdoor furniture looking? Often the furniture is in good shape and may need a refresh with a good cleaning and coat of paint. The challenging part is when you want to replace cushions or pillows. If you have ever shopped for them, you will notice there is a wide variety of options, and it can be confusing, so I decided to investigate.
Only choose a fabric labeled for outdoor use, which will include polyester and solution-dyed acrylic or olefin. These fabrics are processed to include a UV protector, and they repel water and stains. Choosing the solution-dyed acrylic is more expensive and durable than the less expensive polyester. Solution-dyed indicates that the fibers were dyed in a color solution before woven; therefore, the colors and images are not printed after the cloth is made and thus fades less.
My recommendation would be to invest in quality outdoor fabric, choosing a solid color, that will last over the years. You can always add inexpensive polyester throw pillows to change the look and feel of your outdoor sitting area. In researching this article, I found that the Sunbrella company (one of the manufacturers of solution-dyed acrylic) has a recycling program for their Sunbrella fabrics, click here to learn more.
Retain the look of your fabric over time by covering your furniture to protect it from intense sun, rain, and the elements when not being used. Or use a storage container on your deck or nearby for convenience, and if you have harsh winters, try to store under cover.
Choosing Cushion Fill
When purchasing cushions, you want to understand what’s inside the fabric and its durability. The goal is to have comfortable cushions that drain well if left out in the rain and retain their shape. The Cushion Source explains each type of cushion and its rating. Again, the better you take care of your outdoor furniture, the longer you will have it looking beautiful.
A few tips and resources:
- Cleaning tips from Sunbrella.
- Reapply a water repellent such as Scotch Guard’s Water and Sun Shield after cleaning. If you have Sunbrella fabric use 303 Fabric Guard (it retains the breathability and applies a water repellent.)
- Invest in outdoor furniture covers from Lowes.
- Store cushions in deck storage boxes from Wayfair or Home Depot.