It may be old and more than a little jaded in looks but with a lick of paint and some basic maintenance, your garden furniture can be summer-ready in the blink of an eye!
The weather has a lot to answer for. The cold wind and rain of winter giving way to spring and then the bleaching effect of the sun, followed by autumnal rains all combine to give your garden furniture a hard time.
More of us are investing in good quality furniture and that means looking after it. If your garden bench, dining set or outdoor sofa is in need of some care and attention, this is the definitive guide to getting it summer-ready.
Too busy? Not got the right tools?
This often means that we ditch or sell our old stuff and buy new but the cheaper, more cost-effective alternative is to have the items professionally restored and rejuvenated.
Skilled and beautifully crafted, many artisan furniture restorers take commissions. Reasonably priced, it is worth the investment for garden furniture and is often just as affordable as a good quality garden furniture set.
As well as working on a specific commission, furniture restorers will also have restored items for sale, and that can include garden benches and other items perfect for use outside.
As well as supporting local businesses and skilled craftspeople, you are also getting a unique piece at an affordable price too.
A spruce up
Some garden furniture needs nothing more than a spruce up, classed as a ‘good brush and a clean’.
- Step 1 – brush down the garden furniture, being close attention to joints and crevices. Use a soft-bristled brush and a soft cloth. You can vacuum it too.
- Step 2 – Check for any repairs that are needed. Some joint mechanisms can be easily replaced, as can planks from wooden garden benches and seating.
- Step 3 - Using warm water and a gentle detergent, wash down your garden furniture. Allow it to dry for a few days before using.
- Step 4 – use a good all round lubricating oil on folding joints to save trap fingers and pinched skin when you fold the chairs or table after use if that is what you do.
If your furniture is in great shape and just looks tired and washed out, then a few hours spent painting it should do the trick.
Paint is usable on most materials but you will need to invest in the right stuff to get a long-lasting finish. As well as using paint for exterior applications, make sure you get the right one for the material.
High street DIY stores will have paint for exterior wood and metal, as well as lighter stains for softer woods.
If you have invested in an expensive hardwood teak garden furniture set, you might not want to mask its beautiful exterior with paint.
With slow-growing wood like teak, you need to keep it nourished so that it remains looking beautiful and strong.
Always check with the manufacturer the correct oil to use. For teak, most people use teak or Danish oil.
Read the instructions carefully as the oil needs gentle handling. Make sure you dispose of rags and brushes correctly and don’t wash any oil down drains. Make sure the furniture is clean and take your time to oil the item in a well-ventilated area.
Leave it to dry in a gentle warm breeze and come summer, you will have hardwood garden furniture that looks stunning again.
A facelift with accessories
If your garden furniture looks fine but you want to give it an updated look for the summer, there are many inexpensive options;
- Outdoor cushions – simple, yet stunningly effective, add colour and comfort with over-sized, over-filled cushions. Throws are a great option too.
- Outdoor rugs – they may not necessarily drape over your garden furniture but a patio dining area receive a significant boost with outdoor rugs framing it on the floor. Many are made from recycled plastic and are a worthwhile investment, although they are an affordable option for any budget.
- Tablecloth and pretty porcelain – give your garden furniture a pretty, feminine look by visiting local charity shops and thrift stores for attractive cups and saucers, along with side plates and cutlery. Perfect for afternoon tea, morning coffee or an evening in the garden enjoying the sunset.
Garden furniture is so important in the garden. It allows us to enjoy the outdoor space in a way that we want to. So how will you update your garden furniture?
Sloane & Sons are pleased to announce a new relationship with Revived & Restored, an artisan furniture restoration company who specialise in hand painted furniture.
Using their extensive experience in furniture painting techniques, they can hand finish any of our Lutyen benches in any colour or style to create a truly individual piece. So, if you like the look of our benches, and want to turn one in to something unique, visit their website to learn more: https://www.revivedandrestored.co.uk.