The Vintage Appeal of Rattan and Wicker Furniture

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If you ever had a dejavu then you might be able to relate to what I’m about to share with you. It’s been a while now that the rattan decor trend is making a comeback. I actually wrote a post about rattan chairs several months ago. The truth of the matter is that rattan decor and cane furniture is striking a very sensitive chord in me, for I have associated it with fond childhood memories. I find the vintage appeal of rattan and cane absolutely enchanting and it seems that many of you are already embracing it for its elegant sensibility.

An elegant outdoor setup with a rattan lounge chair and furniture looking lovely with a garden in the background. The suspension lampshade made of rattan designed by Tine K Home is that little detail that makes a difference. Image by Nedgis.
Image by Nedgis. The garden in the background is the perfect backdrop for this beautiful outdoor setup in earth tones with a timeless elegance. Believe it or not the suspension, the Bird, signed by the Danish publishing house Tine K Home, is the detail that really makes a difference. It is a large hand-made rattan shade in a design that refers to an old birdcage adding just about the right amount of texture in this scheme.
This looks so French or not? A rattan bench with a seat pad and thin, steel legs looking so elegant in front of a vintage looking white window shutter. Image by Garden Trading.
Image by Garden Trading. What’s not to love about this bench? Even on a gray day, just looking at it will have my heart jump faster.

Long gone are the days where rattan and wicker are reserved for patios only. Rattan is known for its durability and casual aesthetic. Hence, it is a material that performs well both indoors and outdoors and is surely making its way into our homes.

A living room with a fireplace and a large window on the side looks so charming with a real hygge feeling to it. The round rattan side table by House Doctor is the detail that adds a vintage charm to it all. Image by Lagoon.
Image by Lagoon. This round side table in rattan by House Doctor is the detail that adds a vintage charm this living space.

In many cases rattan may feel raw yet, it’s taking on another dimension nowadays for emphasis is placed on its skeletal and sculptural form in contrast to its surroundings. However, its the weave and finish that yield its decorative attributes.

How beautiful is this rattan bedroom chair with an off-white mahogany frame and a flair of a colonial style. Image by The French Bedroom Co.
Image by The French Bedroom Co. A beautiful rattan chair with an off-white mahogany frame that connotes to a colonial style.
Striking elegance! A beautiful bedroom with a vintage looking bed with cane inserts at the headboard and footboard. Image by The French Bedroom Co.
Image by The French Bedroom Co. I love this bed for despite its imposing head and footboards, it still looks relaxed. It has a vintage vibe to it that is striking.

Take cane for example. When the weave is tight and refined, then that piece of decor or furniture looks much more sophisticated and less casual, but still relaxed. Personally, I love the flair of cane furniture in a bedroom, but I would definitely consider them for a dining space as well for a less formal vibe.

Imagine a covered outdoor space with a sea view and a rattan corner sofa on the deck with a coffee and side tables just like this one. Wow. Image by Image by Sweetpea & Willow.
Image by Sweetpea & Willow. The Higold Mosch Corner Sofa is another fine example of a tight weave that gives it a luxury elegance. Please take note how different types of texture are layered in starting from the ground and going up (flooring, area rug, coffee table, lamp shade, roof truss).

Now when the minimal Scandi design mantra meets the vintage charm of rattan and wicker, then magic happens. The naturalness of rattan fits the bill for Scandin interiors, adding an element of warmth and craftsmanship.

A minimal Scandi inspired vignette with a Dom by Bloomingville rattan chair next to a round side table decorated with books, a lamp and an art frame. Image by Lagoon.
Image by Lagoon. The Dom Chair from the Danish brand Bloomingville has the beautiful and simple shapes that characterize Nordic design.
A lifestyle image on the left and a cutout image on the right of a beautiful rattan console table that could make a great addition anywhere. Image by The French Bedroom Co.
Image by The French Bedroom Co. A rattan console table like this will never go unnoticed whether you place it at the entryway or create a vignette somewhere.

In most cases, rattan should be introduced in small dosages for its relaxed, organic vibe, but with caution as to avoid making it feel too ’70s. In my opinion, the ‘more is less‘ rule really applies here. Nonetheless, the real charm in wicker, cane and furniture and decor lies in this retro feel that creates a yearning for the glamour of another era.

A cozy rattan curved back armchair, Coon by House Doctor. Image by Lagoon.
Image by Lagoon. This cozy rattan curved armchair, Coon by House Doctor, is certainly up my alley with its laid-back flair.
A vignette with a rattan tub chair and simple seating looking elegant. Image by Cox & Cox.
Image by Cox & Cox. A decorative pillow will compliment nicely any rattan chair, especially when it is used as an accent like this rattan tub chair.
Candles and rattan lanterns add such warmth even in an outdoor space. An outdoor vignette with a rattan sofa and side table and blanket thick green foliage in the background looks a lot like a place I want to have for myself. Image by ©Lights4fun.
Image by ©Lights4fun. Despite the airy look of rattan, it always feels homey and cozy. Adding lanterns and candles makes it feel even more warm.

Owning a rattan piece almost feels like owning a family heirloom (have a look at these rattan chairs for example). Rattan’s handcrafted authenticity make rattan’s vintage appeal even stronger. From a color perspective, rattan seems to take on color really well and that is a bonus. There won’t be any second guessing. It fits with all.

A dining space with a light oak dining table juxtaposing against the retro looking rattan dining chairs in a striking espresso tone. Image by Sweetpea & Willow.
Image by Sweetpea & Willow. The Siam chair is retro looking rattan chair in a striking, chic espresso tone.
Open shelves stacked with rattan baskets, plants, cushion and decorative pillows. It has a bohemian flair to it but in a very refined way. Image by El Corte Inglés Decoración.
Image by El Corte Inglés Decoración. I have a thing about baskets and so when it comes to rattan baskets I’m totally head over heels with them and onboard.

So, whether you are considering of introducing just a few baskets, a lantern or a bigger piece like a peacock chair as an accent, it will surely captivate you with its effortless elegance. As a side note, I thought I should mention that the rise of this trend seems to go well with the Art Deco trend whose influence is spreading in the design world. I think it’s because of the detailing involved in both.

That's my kind of style of outdoor wicker patio furniture. Image by Garden Trading.
Image by Garden Trading. What I love about this wicker furniture setting is that it fuses seamlessly with the surroundings highlighting the beautiful garden.

Needless to say, that this vintage vibe in rattan is an aesthetic that I tend to associate with the French provincial decorating style – a style with a mix of rustic elements and elegant details. It also happens to be one of my favorite styles along with the distinct Parisian decorating style that I discuss here. Therefore, the resurfacing of the updated rattan decor trend is definitely one that is close to my heart and well within my comfort zone.

But, how do you feel about it? Let me know…

Love, xx

Velvet signature
  • Wicker Furniture April 9, 2019 at 10:17 am

    Thanks for the post. Designs are really awesome. You can check our new wicker collection. And keep sharing such insightful posts.

  • Truly magnificent collection it is. Being one of the natural furniture making items, Wicker creates an impressive texture finish.

    • You’re absolutely right. And its that texture that draws us to wicker even more. Have a good day Amir!

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