Why Materials Are So Important For Outdoor Cafe Furniture

If you’re looking for outdoor cafe furniture then it stands to reason that it needs to be durable, attractive, and convenient. Furniture that is kept outside needs to be able to withstand harsh weather. Heat from the sun can break down the fibres of natural materials while humidity can cause corrosion and mould. Chairs and tables for outdoor use need to be resistant to these factors and able to be stacked for storage. We’ve put together a quick overview of points to consider when choosing your outdoor cafe or bistro furniture.


Furniture for outdoor cafe use needs to be sufficiently light that it’s not difficult for members of staff to move it around. Typically outdoor furniture has to be packed up at the end of the day and stored under cover or in a secure place to avoid theft, and then in the morning it needs to be set out again. If furniture is heavy and difficult to move, then there is a chance of staff hurting themselves in the process. Fortunately, outdoor cafe chairs are lightweight and available in a wide range of styles and colours, making set up and put away, an absolute breeze.

Non corrosive

Corrosion can be a major problem with outdoor furniture. Untreated wrought iron for instance produces a reddish powder as it starts to rust, and becomes weaker. As well as looking unsightly, this reddish powder can rub off from tables and chairs on to peoples hands and clothing. Aluminium is a sleek modern alternative for those that like the look of metal cafe furniture and thanks to powder coatings, it can even be made to look like wrought iron.

Fungal resistant

Mould and mildew are types of fungal growths which set up home in the irregularities of wood that hasn’t been treated. Spores in the air land on the wood and this begins a decaying process which makes the furniture start to look weathered. The majority of soft woods used for indoor furniture aren’t suitable for outdoor use, with the exception of teak. This beautiful wood has always been popular for its weather resistant qualities and offers a wonderfully warm and natural aesthetic. Teak can be left to weather to a lovely silvery colour or you can oil it a couple of times a year to retain its colour.

Resistance to ultra violet light

The effects of ultra violet rays from the sun can be damaging to chairs made from natural materials such as wicker and can break down the structure of their fibres. Fortunately there are many “resin wicker” chairs on the market which are made from synthetic materials but still have that authentic French or Parisian chair aesthetic. These can withstand the sun and are lightweight and low in maintenance too. Another fabulous material for outdoor use is polypropylene. This comes in a huge range of designs and colours, allowing you to be as bold as you like with your outdoor design.

At Cafe Chairs Melbourne we have a wide range of stylish outdoor furniture so why not take a look and be inspired. You can browse our online store, download our latest furniture catalogue, and even visit our showroom to try out our products yourself.