Is Your Commercial Grade Cafe Furniture What It Seems?

a-76-chocolateWhen it comes to cafe furniture it’s fair to say that not everything is created equal. For example even though 99.9% of all cafe furniture is considered ‘commercial grade’, some have a tendency to be more long lasting than others. It has nothing to do with price of the furniture or indeed the materials used. Instead it has everything to do with the testing process itself. So how do you know when you purchase commercial grade furniture for your cafe that it is indeed going to stand the test of time? The answer….make sure it’s AFRDI tested!

The term AFRDI stands for Australasian Furnishing Research and Design Institute and is a well known method of rigorously testing a wide variety of furniture including cafe tables and chairs. In essence this type of testing really is second to none. Every piece of furniture that carries the final seal of approval (the AFRDI tick) has gone through a barrage of punishing tests. These tests cover 5 main areas which are

  • Strength
  • Durability
  • Flammability
  • Stability
  • Safety

The difference between the AFRDI form of testing, compared to other types of commercial grade testing are that each piece of furniture has to pass every test with flying colours, if it doesn’t then it doesn’t get the seal of approval. What’s more each piece of furniture has to go through the process, not once but three times.

So what should you look out for if you are looking to buy cafe furniture that lasts?

Any furniture whether it’s tables, chairs or bar stools that carry the signature AFRDI blue tick are pretty much indestructible and are therefore ideal for any busy cafe, restaurant, or bistro that experiences high levels of customer use. Here at Cafe Furniture Melbourne we stock a complete range of AFRDI tested cafe furniture available for you to browse and buy. From traditional rustic to contemporary industrial we carry a wide range of furniture for every occasion. So why not take a closer look at to see just what we have to offer.

Alternatively if you’re in the Campbellfield area of Victoria then why not come and take a look for yourself. Our warehouse is open Monday to Friday, but if you’d like a Saturday appointment then call us on 03 9357 9688 and we’ll oblige.

Remember the next time you see the term ‘commercial grade furniture’ then unless it’s AFRDI tested then take it with a grain of salt.

3 Ways To Revitalise Your Cafe’s Appearance On A Budget

steph-chairs-circular-topWith so much competition it’s important to make your cafe stand out from the crowd. Creating a brand new look for your cafe isn’t easy without shelling out wads of cash. However, if you’re to keep your regular customers and attract new ones in, it’s important that you update your image before it goes stale. Tired furniture and décor can give a customer the wrong perception of your cafe so it really is important to keep it fresh.

We’ve put together 3 easy and relatively inexpensive ways to breath new life into your cafe.

  1. Create several different seating areas – cafes are used for all manner of purposes nowadays from freelancers using it as a place to write to people using the local cafe to hold a business meeting. Because of this, it’s important to have a variety of seating areas and an assortment of furniture. High dining is on the up so why not purchase a few tall bar stools and bar tables to add an interesting new dining area where customers can perch aloft and survey what’s going on around them. If you have space for a lounge area, then why not introduce a couple of sofas and tub chairs. The change in seating and heights will give a qhole new dynamic to your interior. We know that you’re thinking this is going to be expensive but why not consider purchasing used furniture. You could save yourself some cash and help the environment at the same time.
  1. Re-upholster or buy some seat pads – Cafe furniture isn’t just about functionality, it’s also about creating an ambience and setting the tone. Good commercial furniture isn’t necessarily cheap so replacing isn’t always an option. So why not freshen up what you’ve already got with some new soft furnishings. You’ll be amazed at what a difference a fresh new cover will make to your sofa or some vivid seat pads to your chairs.
  1. Accessorise – Often the smallest of changes can make a big difference. Just by swapping out the colour of your accessories you can add a whole new vibe to your cafe’s interior. You could choose one main wall and paint it a bold shade and then choose your accessories to coordinate the look. Changing your table clothes, candles, or flowers is simple enough to do, but it can make the world of difference. Don’t believe us? Give it a go!

Here at Cafe Furniture Melbourne we’re always full of great ideas. We also stock a lot of very reasonably priced cafe furniture, including a good variety of tables, chairs, stools and Ottomans. Whether your look is contemporary, traditional, urban, or industrial, we’re sure to have something that’s right up your street. Why not browse our online store or, if you happen to be in the Campbellfield area of Victoria why not call into our warehouse and see our products for yourself. If you need any more information regarding our furniture please feel free to contact us on (03) 9088 4163 and our friendly staff will do all they can to assist you.

Introducing Our Matte Replica Tolix Bar Stools

46-round-blackA successful company always takes heeds of what its customers are saying which is why we’re pleased to announce the arrival of our matte Tolix bar stools. As much as many of our customers are huge fans of our replica Tolix stools with their glossy finish, there were many also said that for them, a matte finish stool would work much better in their venue. Well voilà, now you can find them here in all their glory.

So what makes Tolix bar stools so popular?


Made from powder coated steel these retro style stools are strong and robust and yet light enough to be moved with ease from one place to another. The best thing about Tolix stools is that if they get a little dented or scratched, they actually look better since it adds to their character. You can’t say that about many modern furniture designs. The rectangular cut out in the seat isn’t just a design whim or an easy way of picking up the stool as some people may think, but was actually intended to be a drain hole as cafe owners used to leave their stools out in all weathers.


Another great reason for buying Tolix stools is their versatility. They first became synonymous with French cafe culture in the 1930’s when they were originally made in gun metal grey and could be found in all of the bars and cafes in Paris. However, these stools have the ability to look good in all types of designs, whether it be an industrial theme, French country farmhouse, or a contemporary kitchen, and if you use copies, then you can save yourself a packet.

Retro design

People just love the retro design of these stools with their clean lines, integral foot rests, and legs that protrude at a sight angle. The fact that they can slot into all sorts of spaces to maximise your floor space and be stacked away for storage, all adds to their appeal.

Great range of colours

Finally, our replica Tolix stools are available in three different sizes and a great variety of colours. Whether you’re looking for black or white, metallic hues, or vibrant purple, orange, red, yellow, green, plus lots more, there’s a colour to suit all designs and décor. Although our matte replica stools are intended for indoor use, you can pay an extra $20 to have them upgraded for external use, in any colour of your choice.

How long will their popularity last? It’s difficult to say but based on durability and stunning good looks, not to mention the affordable price of replicas, it’s our guess that bums will be sitting on these stools for many years in the foreseeable future.

To find out more about our stools or any of our other products please don’t hesitate to call us on 03 9357 9688. Meanwhile if you happen to be in the Campbellfield area of Melbourne, then why not pop into our warehouse where you can see these stools for yourself.

How To Give Your Cafe That Industrial Makeover

Small Detroit Adjustable Drafing StoolThe Industrial look is an on-trend décor style that’s exciting for it’s uniqueness. By taking elements from industrial settings such as warehouses and factories and placing them into social spaces such as cafes and restaurants it creates a great effect. So just how do you give your cafe, bistro, or restaurant an industrial makeover that doesn’t look naff?

Exposing the details

One of the first tricks that you can use is to strip back your area to the bare bones. Remember that a factory environment isn’t a particularly pretty place because covering up piping, brickwork, nuts, bolts, and beams, weren’t seen as important, or particularly practical. So take off that plaster and expose the brickwork, rip up the modern flooring to expose the hard wood underneath, or take away that covered false ceiling to reveal those oh so sexy oak beams underneath.

In with the old and out with the new

When looking to furnish your cafe then try using re-purposed items. For instance upturned barrels make great coffee tables, old drafting stools make the perfect seating. Old pipes make excellent door handles or free standing coat racks and best of all, old timber sleepers make an excellent bar. In fact when it comes to re-purposing, if it’s normally found in a warehouse or factory environment, then it’s perfect for your industrial look, so get creative.

Light it up like an industrialist

Arguably one of the most striking elements of any industrial look is the lighting. The insertion of lighting that was once the exclusive domain of loud, dirty, factories, being placed into a truly social space like a cafe can bring about a great look. How about grouping clusters of naked light bulbs suspended from chains, or copper piping? Alternatively what about obtaining some gorgeous oversized brass lampshades? You know, the type that used to get seriously dusty! You can even place some of those metallic style floor standing lamps in various corners of your room to give off a great lighting ambience.

Now brighten it up…a little!

Okay, so now you’ve got your industrial look, you don’t actually want it to look too much like a dark and dingy factory. Too many dark tones will make your space look really sombre. Instead for best results try to capture the real essence of the industrial look but brighten it up with some accents of colour. How about hanging up some contemporary art work with vibrant splashes of colour, or alternatively what about placing fresh cut flowers on the table for that cosy, homely feel. Alternatively copper add a glorious warmth to the overall look so why not introduce it in the form of tables, mirror frames, signs, or trinkets.

So there you have it. Hopefully by following this design you have all the knowledge you need to create your own industrial space. Here at Cafe Furniture Melbourne we don’t promise to be expert interior designers but what we do know about is cafe furniture. Fortunately we stock a wide range of Industrial style cafe furniture that’s just right for the look you want to achieve. To find out more log onto or alternatively if you can’t find what you’re looking for then contact us on 03 9357 6988 and our experienced team can help.