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Rattan Wood And Its Uses

Aug 22, 2008
What is Rattan?

Rattan is a Malay word which means rotan. Rotan is one of a species of palms. These are native to Africa among other countries. The rattan palm is different than it's relatives because it has thinner stems and are more like vines than trees.

Somewhat similar to bamboo except for the fact that rattan cannot stand up by itself. It grows over other plants for support. Most of the rattan that is harvested for making furniture is grown in Indonesia. Some pieces can grow up to 27 inches long.

Furniture makes like rattan because it is light and fairly easy to shape. The durability of rattan is more than other materials. The part used for weaving is the outer part or skin of the rattan. The middle that is left is used for other parts of furniture. Furniture and baskets made of this material are very popular. They can be painted or stained just like regular wood.

Do you know that not only is rattan used for making furniture and baskets but it is also used for baston, sticks which are used in the practice of martial arts. This is the only material that is allowed for use in making weapons in the Society for Creative Anachronism for combat in martial arts.

The handles of mallets used to play percussion instruments are made from rattan. Another use for rattan comes from the fruit. Certain types have a resin called dragon's blood. This is used for dying violins. In earlier times it was thought to have value as a medicine. The light peach color of the resin when used as a dye is highly desirable.

Because as a material for making furniture it is a highly durable material, it has gained popularity over the years. Everyone wants a rattan couch and chair for their front seating area. From loveseats to chairs and couches the rattan furniture certainly makes a statement . It is the perfect furniture. It can be stained if you would prefer.

Some rattan furniture is used on screen porches and in the south, especially Florida the great look of rattan can be found in people's homes where the atmosphere is more casual. The room in a lot of homes in Florida is called appropriately enough a Florida room. It is a mixture between a screen porch and a sun porch. The style is considered more or less an informal style. This is useful for entertaining and for having the grandkids over. It keeps your formal living room looking formal and with the sand that is present in most of the south this type of furniture is easier to clean than your formal furniture.

Rattan is probably more popular than the porch furniture of other eras. It has a better appearance than some of the older metal furniture. It is strong and durable and is easily changed to match your indoor or outdoor décor. Since it can be stained or painted as mentioned earlier, it is easy to change when you decide to change a room around or paint it a different color.
About the Author
Ed Terran is the pen name for the editor of My Furniture shop and house fitting listings
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