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The Rattan Chair Makes a Comeback

The rattan chair is bursting onto the scene once again in the most stylish homes and verandas. Once relegated to porches, colonial homes and a certain charming kind of kitsch, the rattan chairs of today are elegant in proportion and craft, while still retaining a classic welcoming feel. These are chairs to sink into and stay awhile, lemonade or spritz in hand--or with a coffee table nearby, if you prefer to go completely contemporary. Still as durable as ever, if not more so, the woven chairs available now are built to last and designed to give a modern nod back in time.

Why a Rattan Chair is So Great

Rattan chairs are a type of wicker, but not all wicker is rattan. This is why a rattan chair is such a wonderful thing. This organic material has been recognized for its strength and comfort for centuries.

  • Rattan is the core of the rattan palm, which looks like a vine, despite being a true palm. If you can imagine the tough, woody fibrousness of larger palm fronds, you can get an idea of the strength of rattan quite easily.
  • As far as organic materials go, rattan is wonderful for making artful chairs. The wood is just flexible enough to weave, since the plant is initially a climber, but it's also strong enough to hold a decent amount of weight. You can sit on these chairs with no concern of collapse.
  • Rattan chairs have a delightful history of being revered for their literal cleanliness. Unlike upholstery or leather furniture, rattan requires almost no care, making it the historical and modern favorite for anyone with a busy lifestyle.

New Takes on The Woven Chair

Now, the rattan chair has made way for other fascinating takes on woven chair styles. The classic style remains, but furniture designers and artisans offer many new silhouettes and weaving techniques for you to browse at Pottery Barn.

  • Discover the thick, modern weave of a seagrass wingback chair. With its matching ottoman and inviting cable knit, this is a chair made for snuggling up with a blanket. A cable-knit throw would be perfect.
  • For traditionalists, look to the scooped-out seat style that begs for long afternoons, deep conversations and genuine design appreciation. Contrasting widths make the rattan of these chairs look like the originals. Get yours in black for an unexpected twist.
  • Rely on the flexible nature of rattan to create a rocker base for your chair. A rattan rocker is a soothing piece of furniture that can't help but make a statement wherever you place it.

With its appeal to furniture classicists and its modern permutations making a big comeback, a rattan chair is an easy selection for your home, especially if you've been craving a place to relax and enjoy a fresh aesthetic.