How to Restore Cane Furniture

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How to Restore Cane Furniture

Cane furniture is made from a mesh of split canes weaved over a wooden frame. Common types of cane furniture include chairs and boxes. Buyers can also find wicker furniture, which refers to any woven items, including those made of cane. Cane furniture dates back to India in the 2nd century AD. The East India Company took it to Europe in the 17th century. It is often associated with the Victorian era and some antique pieces are valuable. Cane products are popular as outdoor furniture, but need regular maintenance to retain their visual appeal and strength. In some cases, owners must reweave the cane to restore it to its original condition.

Reweave Cane Furniture

Regular use and age can loosen the weave of cane furniture. If this happens, owners can reweave a new section, but this is a major task that requires skill. If owners are not comfortable with the task, they should look for professional weavers. Before restoring antique cane furniture, owners should confirm whether reweaving it undermines or enhances its value.

Remove the Old Cane

Remove brittle cane by drilling into each hole the cane is woven through. Drill holes at an angle that follows the line of the original cane. Then pull out the cane strands.

Strip the Wood Finish

Antique cane furniture often has a wooden frame with a patina that took years to develop. This finish is highly sought after and adds value to the furniture. Owners should only consider stripping the wood and removing its patina if this does not devalue the furniture. If owners choose to strip the wood, they should use wire wool and methylated spirits, taking care not to scratch or damage the surface. Scraping with a knife is a faster method, if done carefully. After scraping off the lacquer, rub the furniture with 100-grade sandpaper. Apply several coats of a wood protector, such as linseed oil, to restore the wooden frame to its natural colour.

Weave New Cane

Owners can replace the damaged cane using strips of new cane. Cane repair kits contain all the raw materials required. In addition, owners should gather a hammer, screwdriver, and glue, and follow the instructions provided with the kit, which vary according to the type of furniture.

Maintain Cane Furniture

To avoid regular restoration projects, owners should maintain cane furniture regularly. This ranges from taking precautions, such as keeping the furniture in the right conditions to dealing with mould and mildew.




Hot and dry conditions

Cane dries out

Cane fibres become brittle

Cane may break

Avoid direct sunlight

Use a humidifier to add moisture to the air

Uneven weight distribution

Cane strands in chair seats break

Avoid concentrated weight on seats

Avoid standing or kneeling on cane furniture

Use chair pads or cushions to distribute weight evenly

Sagging seats

Occurs after prolonged use

Causes cane strands to break along the inside edges of the frame

Turn the chair upside down and apply a warm, wet cloth to the bottom of the seat

Leave to dry naturally overnight and then remove the cloth

Avoid using the chair for at least 48 hours

Mould and mildew

Discolouring on the cane

Mix bleach with warm soapy water to clean the furniture

Rinse and allow it to dry naturally

Over time, cane furniture accumulates dust and dirt. Owners should clean the furniture regularly using a mild detergent in warm water and a soft cloth, taking care to clean hard to reach areas. Use a soft bristle brush on heavy dirt. Rinse well and allow the furniture to dry naturally. Avoid using furniture, like chairs, for at least 48 hours because wet cane stretches out of shape.

How to Buy Supplies to Restore Cane Furniture on eBay

Buyers looking for supplies to restore antique or modern cane furniture can choose from many options oneBay. They can find items quickly by entering keywords in the search box that appears on every page, for example, " cane repair kits", and filtering the results based on various criteria, including price range and condition. Buyers can browse the eBay deals for great offers on furniture. Cane furniture typically consists of a wooden frame with woven cane strips. It is popular as outdoor furniture and there are valuable antique pieces. Over time, cane furniture shows signs of wear and tear that owners can repair. This restoration involves removing any damaged cane and reweaving it.

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