Revive Wicker Furniture

In order to revive wicker furniture, the furniture should be in fairly good shape. One method to reviving wicker is to paint it. The only problem with painting, is that the paint will eventually wear off, especially if you leave the wicker furniture outdoors in the weather.

I didn’t want to deal with chipping paint, so, I decided to experiment and revive my wicker furniture with an oil based stain. The original wicker was a blond color, with green wicker trim. I applied two coats of walnut color stain, and the wicker furniture now looks like new.

When staining, use a thick drop cloth. It is preferable to stain outside, as the fumes from the stain are pretty stinky. Wear disposable gloves (like the surgical kind), clothes that you don’t mind getting stain on, and keep your feet and arms covered. I was using a brush to apply the stain, and ended up getting an “over spray” on my feet and arms. I was able to get some of the stain splatters off with nail polish remover, however, the rest will just have to wear off. Keep in mind, the drying time for oil based stains is fairly long, so when handling your furniture, put your gloves on, and place the piece that’s drying on some type of drop cloth, or a piece of cardboard. (You certainly don’t want to get stain on your carpeting)

I found that by staining my wicker furniture, it not only seemed to recondition the wicker, but it was a very inexpensive way to have “new” furniture. For two chairs and a small table, I used a half of a quart of stain. Stains come in a large array of colors, so you could stain your wicker to match any decor. Add a coordinating cushion, sit back, and enjoy your “new” furniture.

I plan to use my wicker furniture outside, so I’ll apply a coat of polyurethane to it as well.

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20 Responses to Revive Wicker Furniture

  1. Thanks for sharing this informative article. I still think that wicker is some of most comfortable outdoor furniture. It is amazing how many people will get rid of their set after just a few years rather than clean it up.

  2. Just wondering how the wicker stain is holding up now? Since it looks like this post is about a year old. Is the stain fading or loosing it’s good look?

  3. Hi Jak,

    The stain has held up pretty good, considering I left the wicker chairs out all last summer – in the sun and rain. (I brought them in for the winter.) I’m getting ready to re-stain them again. This time I’m using a mahogany color that has a built in polyurethane.

  4. Wicker furniture is a staple for various types of homes. This sort of furnishing is unique in that it suits a vast variety of styles and designs. It does not matter if you live in a modern dwelling or a rustic home, wicker furniture is the ideal addition to your space.

  5. Not only is it ‘green’ to keep using the wicker furniture, nothing looks as inviting as a wicker furniture set.

  6. Pam says:

    I sure wish I would’ve found this a couple of months ago before I painted my wicker patio furniture. It’s only been a couple of months but after the summer’s use, it really looks down-trodden now. Don’t know what would be involved in getting the paint out and staining now or if it’s a lost cause and just need to start over.

    Pams last blog post..Picking an NJ Laser Hair Removal Doctor or Clinic

  7. Interesting treatment of your wicker. Another year has passed. Did your mahogany stain prove effective?

  8. Stefanie says:

    Try coating your skin with a coating of liquid dish soap; when you wash the stain will float off.

  9. Littlemama says:

    I can’t wait to try this! What a great article. I’ve thought about getting rid of this chair and almost did before moving to my new home but now I’m glad I kept the chair. It has wonderful dark wood arms and a nice leather cushion I put in there. Now I’m going to do the project of staining! Wish me luck. :)

  10. Kyt says:

    I really appreciate the advice on refurbishing wicker furniture.

    I see most people use polyeurathane as a protective final coat and I wanted to say that an old time furniture fellow told me to only use lacquer on wicker because it is both protective AND flexible. Whereas the polys are all pretty stiff when completely dry and will crack as the wicker flexes.

    Anyone know about this?

    Thank again.

  11. Hi Kyt,

    I’d say if an old timer suggested lacquer, he probably knows best. For my wicker, I wasn’t too concerned since it wasn’t a very good grade. That said, it’s still holding up fairly well, but we don’t use it a lot and I do keep it out of the sun.

  12. Donna says:

    I want to stain to darken a blond wicker bedroom suite (double dresser and 2 side tables – all with drawers). The drawers are all solid wood trimmed. With proper prep will stain on the drawers stand up over time?

  13. cj says:

    just wondering..do you have to sand any of it off before staining?

  14. cj says:

    i forgot to say, my wicker is a dark stain already and has worn off in spots…especially the legs and arms.

  15. Craig says:

    Hi Barbara, Very interesting article and just what I was looking for. By what I’ve read and by common sense to me oil staining is a great idea. Everything seems to point to putting oil back into wicker furniture which makes sense to revive the rattan, bamboo, paper fibre, or whatever material it is. My question to you is what specific oil stain did you use? There are so many different types out there and I’m not sure which one to use since some are a type of “stain paint”, others are plain stains, others have a mix of polys, etc. Anything insight is helpful, Thank You

  16. Shelley Cooper says:

    Yes I would love to know what stain is recommended. I would like to restain my wicker furniture set as the colour has come off where our two cats have sprayed it (yuck) trying to outdo each other in territory marking. So hoping that staining and then maybe applying a lacquer as suggested might prevent the problem happening again.

  17. catherine reid says:

    I to am curious on what stain you used. Mini wax advised not to use their product because of the difficulty of wiping off the excess stain. Not that I don’t think beyond the labels. Sounds like maybe you to. Did you have difficulty with the stain settling in between the groves of the wicker? thanks

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