Commercial/ Contract buyers are becoming more sophisticated/ knowledgeable over time re: outdoor cushions.
Sunbrella RAIN Fabric– is the same as any Sunbrella upholstery fabric with one huge exception– the underside has a rubber membrane that prevents water entry into the foam/ fill material– but there are pros and cons associated with rain fabric:
- Cushions can be used soon after rainfall
- Eliminates need for fast dry reticulated foam which adds to cost of cushions by 50%
- Selection is limited to a few basic colors/ textures
- RAIN fabric is more expensive than standard Sunbrella fabric
- Since the membrane holds air (water tight), the cushion can feel like sitting on an inflated inner-tube or balloon. Consequently, the cushion must be vented properly to assure comfort– we know how to vent properly– many manufacturers DO NOT. TALK WITH US- (909) 758-6179.
WHY REPLICATE ORIGINAL CUSHIONS?
For years, buyers would send us a sample cushion and say, “Replicate this cushion in a particular Sunbrella fabric”.
Why replicate originals when we can make them BETTER?
Size and fit are factors that may require samples– then we tend to maximize durability and comfort– FULLY REVERSIBLE CUSHIONS LAST LONGER…we frequently change sew pattern, fill, thickness and tie scenarios to IMPROVE cushions– “Great American companies innovate and improve- they do not replicate mediocrity”.
SUNBRELLA FABRIC COLLECTIONS
Sunbrella continues to be the trend setter in the fabric industry– only problem is fabrics are added, discontinued or designated as “exclusives” to certain manufacturers/ designers. We prefer Sunbrella over other brands of acrylic– and never waste our time making inferior cushions out of polyspun fabrics.
We always warn clients not to feel like a “kid in a candy store” when navigating approximately 500 fabric options: Price of Sunbrella fabric can range from $15.00 to $100.00 per yard– depending on the intricacy/ texture of the weave. ALL Sunbrella fabric carries a 5 year warranty– regardless of price.
Current upholstery collections include: Elements, Fusion, Makers, Pure and Shift collections.
Fabrics in the Elements collection are “proven winners” not likely to be discontinued any time soon. That is extremely important in commercial settings with numerous cushions. Choose an experimental/ trend setting collection; get a rip/ damage on cushions…fabric becomes discontinued…you have a problem.
We generally avoid the European collection– because HUGE yardage requirements preclude competitive pricing.
Beware of stripes in the Fusion collection– selvedge is top to bottom– not vertical– so we need to splice many cushions to run stripes vertically– we “hate” to splice cushions.
As cushions become thicker/ plusher– trend is away from single seam– not only is stress placed on non gusset/ single seam cushions massive fabric waste may be involved. We argue best example of stronger/ smarter cushion patterns may be seen on owlee.com/collections.
SQUIRRELS VERSUS CUSHIONS– SQUIRRELS WIN!
Every day in peak season, we get a call: “Squirrels damaged our cushions!”– especially from clients in Texas.
Preventative measures are extreme and seldom work:
“Shoot the critters, use dogs to run them off, use sprays that stink and do not last, cover the furniture so squirrels can crawl under covers and do more harm…OR make a jacket that fits over back/ top cushions where they are frequently attacked…thus far, that is the best solution. We offer squirrel guard jackets– others do not.
Headrest jackets also protect the cushions; keep them clean and can be removed, washed to accomodate guests and provide the ultimate high end cushion.
CLEANING SUNBRELLA CUSHIONS/ ZIPPERS
The best way to SHORTEN the life expectancy and water retention properties of Sunbrella fabric is to machine wash the covers. That requires a zipper for removal.
We can discuss better options…example:
A client/ resort in Virgin Islands has chaise lounge frames/ cushions right on the sandy beach…suntan oil and sand can “trash” the cusions– must be cleaned/ washed frequently.
Solution: We installed zippers so workers could remove covers and HAND WASH the cushions.
STA DRY LINERS:
The trend in deep seating back cushions is thick, plush cushions utilizing fiber fill– not foam.
So how do you make them dry quickly?
- RAIN fabric is one option
- Encapsulating the fiber/ pillow fill in a sta dry liner is the other option– where “quick dry” is imperative.