Rattan and Wicker Furniture – What’s The Difference?

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  • August 7, 2017
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Have you ever wondered what the difference between rattan furniture and wicker furniture is? If you have, I can explain the differences and some of the common misconceptions about these wonderful natural furnishings.

Many people incorrectly believe that rattan and wicker are one in the same. This couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, they aren’t even in the same category. Let’s take a look at how these two popular, yet very different, arts come together to provide a unique, elegant atmosphere in the home.

First let’s get some facts about rattan. Rattan is a vine that grows in the tropical forests of the Far East. Usually, it grows in a pole shape with a diameter of about 1-3 inches. Rattan can grow up to hundreds of feet in length. It is also one of nature’s strongest woods. Rattan cane has a solid core, unlike bamboo pole, making it much more durable and harder to break. Rattan will not warp and is ideal for making furniture. After being cut into smaller sections, the canes are then molded into shape to form the frames for various furniture items. Peel, the outer skin of the rattan pole, is traditionally used to wrap the furniture joints.

Wicker, on the other hand, refers to items made from any number of natural materials, including rattan core, reed, rush, and willow. When wet, these natural materials are pliable enough to be woven, creating the unique wicker-weaved designs we see in wicker furniture. In fact, most rattan furniture is created with wicker weaved on top of the rattan core frame. Rattan and wicker are wonderful natural products, each piece having its own unique set of qualities. No two pieces are ever completely the same.

Many people love the aesthetic qualities of this furniture. A great room in your home furnished with rattan can feel like a retreat to a secluded island resort after a long day at the office. Who wouldn’t want to come home to that? Another common misconception is that wicker and rattan furniture is strictly for outdoor or patio use. Definitely not so. Rattan furniture comes in living room sets, dining room sets, bedrooms, office furniture and much more.

Many times it is hard to find these types of furnishings locally. And, often, even if you can find them, it is usually a pretty limited selection of items. It’s easy to find these great natural furnishings online. Just search the web and you will find great websites that offer authentic rattan and wicker furniture. Happy hunting!


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