Image: Virginia MacDonald
Learn how to spruce up your weatherproof woven furniture and keep it pristine.
Remove all cushions, which should be laundered separately as per the manufacturer’s instructions. Remove and clean any glass panes (such as tabletops) with a specialty spray.
Using the jet setting, hose the furniture off with water to remove loose dirt, dust and water marks. Though weather-resistant synthetic wicker is significantly sturdier than its natural-fibre counterpart, its textured surface poses the same cleaning challenge. Get into the nooks and crannies by scrubbing the surface with a nylon-bristled brush dipped in soapy water (use one part mild dish soap to eight parts water). If you live in a very wet climate, add one part white vinegar to the solution to ward off mildew. Rinse the furniture with the hose and leave it out in the sun to dry.
At the end of the season, move the furniture to a covered area like a garage or shed, and drape it with cotton canvas sheeting to combat dust. If you’re unable to take it indoors, wrap the furniture tightly in waterproof tarps.
Tried and true tip
When nestled into a verdant yard, your outdoor furniture can get into a sticky situation: Sap drippings from surrounding trees can be tricky to remove. Begin by scraping off any dry sap using a dull blade. Next, rub the remainder using a clean cloth dipped in rubbing alcohol. Wash the alcohol off with mild dish soap and rinse with water. The sap will be gone without a trace.
1 Old timer: J.R. Watkins has made things the old-fashioned way since 1868. All-purpose cleaner in lemon, $6, Watkins.
2 Limited edition: Get this naturally derived summery scent while you can! Method All-Purpose Cleaner in Sunset Beach, $6, Well.
3 Family lore: Developed by a Torontonian based on her grandmother's recipe. All-Purpose cleaner in Lime & Ginger, $10, C is for Clean.