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Winterise your outdoor furniture

Today, Melbourne has set a new record – it’s after 2pm and the temperature is a brutal 7 degrees. And raining. Horrible. Outdoor furniture is the last thing on anyone’s mind. But, just like we’re expecting the sun to come up tomorrow, we’re expecting Spring in a few weeks. So you want your outdoor furniture to be nice and clean, ready to go, right?

There’s a few simple things you can do to make sure your furniture is going to be worth sitting on.

Mould & Mildew

The big enemy of all outdoor fabrics is mould or mildew. These are organisms that grow on any surfaces and produce an evil smelling, ugly, slippery slime. They need three things to thrive – moisture, food and an absence of light. The moisture – outdoor furniture in Melbourne during winter will have that, for sure! Second – food – this can be the dust spores that settle on your furniture. Finally – an absence of light – mould hates the sun. If you find your furniture has been affected by mould or mildew, firstly wash it with a chlorine-based product (not the fabrics) – test an area first. Then, expose the product to light, and let dry. If possible, try and move the furniture to an area where it will be exposed to daylight. The sun kills mould spores.

With the fabrics, there are commercial products available that can treat this. If possible, remove cushion covers and dry clean, or carefully wash them. If your covers are too far gone, Outdoor Living Direct can replace them.


All timber will fade, and ultimately split when exposed to weather constantly. The simplest way to deal with this issue is to invest in a waterproof cover – Outdoor Living Direct can supply custom made covers for any product, using UV stable, fully waterproof fabrics.

In addition, the regular application of a commercial timber oil will significantly improve timber life.

Moama on Murray

We wanted to relate a story that restores your faith in human nature.

Very close friends of Outdoor Living Direct recently had a family emergency – one of the kids suffered a very serious medical condition and was admitted to intensive care. This was a harrowing time for all. Thankfully the child is doing much better, and although is still in hospital, looks like achieving an excellent outcome.

The family was due to travel on Monday to the Murray river for a family houseboat holiday. Obviously, this has had to be postponed, as they simply can’t travel with a child still in hospital. The houseboat company – “Moama on Murray” – was contacted by a family friend who explained the situation. Although not legally obliged to do so, “Moama on Murray”, agreed to accept the late cancellation and they offered a refund of the full payment of the trip when they were informed of the reasons.   The company didn’t have to refund anything but did so because they are run and owned by good people.

So if you’re thinking of a great holiday on the Murray River, please consider “Moama on Murray” – they’re great people. You can contact them here:

Maintaining your outdoor furniture

Maintaining your outdoor furniture:

Outdoor furniture can turn an outdoor area into a living paradise. Well cared for furniture will allow for your family and friends to enjoy the outdoors for many years to come. However the weather can be unkind to furniture and can leave it looking dull or drab. If your furniture is starting to become affected by the weather demons keep reading this blog for some great ideas and tips to help restore the look and keep it looking brand new.


Cushion Care

All fabrics will fade when exposed to the sun, including outdoor fabrics. The fabric will often fade rapidly in Australia’s harsh UV climate. Accordingly, it is most important to keep cushions inside when they are not being used, or ensure they are covered with a waterproof outdoor furniture cover. We are happy to supply custom made furniture covers to help care for your outdoor furniture. Another alternative is to place the cushions in a well sealed cushion box. A cushion box not only protects your cushions when not in use but also allows for extra storage within your outdoor area.


Outdoor Furniture Covers

As mentioned above, the best way to take care of your outdoor furniture is to simply cover it.  Custom made, fitted covers in acrylic or polyester waterproof material are readily available and easy to put on and take off.  If you are unable to justify the cost of custom-made covers and are not so concerned over the look of the covered furniture, tarpaulins with eyelets and ropes can be used. Here at Outdoor Living Direct we can help you with your cover request. Don’t let your beautiful new outdoor lounge or dining setting become a victim of the elements – call us today! Our custom furniture covers can be made to order for outdoor furniture; BBQs; and just about anything else you can think of. Speak to one of our friendly team or email us at to find out how we can tailor a cover for you. Hand made, by a local Melbourne supplier, from top-quality UV-resistant yarn-dyed 250g/M2 500 denier waterproof fabric; our covers are a permanent solution to a common problem. All our covers also come with a 2 year comprehensive warranty.


Caring for your timber furniture

If possible store your timber outdoor furniture inside during periods when it is not being used. This will prolong the life of your furniture and reduce the necessity for treatment of the timber. The natural expansion and contraction of the wood due to changes in temperature and humidity can lead to structural damage, so keeping the furniture in a more regulated and insulated environment will prolong the life of the product.

Moisture is the other enemy of timber furniture, causing it to rot and warp.  If possible keep the furniture off damp surfaces like grass and soil, and when cleaning your outdoor area it is wise to remove the furniture first.  Proximity to soil can also attract termites and other pests that can quickly destroy the timber.

Timber ages gracefully, maintaining both structural integrity (it is very resistant to rot and warping) and appearance, requiring only periodical cleaning and oiling in order to maintain its attractive surface colour and grain.

If untreated, timber will weather to a silvery grey, which many people prefer if they are aiming to achieve a rustic or seaside look to their outdoor area. If on the other hand you wish to retain the rich, dark character of your timber you will need to clean and oil it periodically. Here at Outdoor Living Direct we have a wide range of timber products. Check them out here today!

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Caring for your rattan furniture

One of the advantages of PE rattan is its low maintenance.  To clean PE rattan, simply brush down the rattan using a soft brush to remove loose dirt, dust, leaves, twigs or spider webs! Remember to brush in all the little nooks to remove any loose dirt which may have been sitting there a while. Avoid using chemical cleaners. Instead, wipe down the rattan regularly using a cloth and mild soapy water, then rinse off using a bucket or hose.  Make sure you remove the cushions first!

Australia’s harsh environment will ultimately damage anything that is left exposed to the sun for long periods, including buildings, cars and furniture. In extreme conditions, PE rattan can start to deteriorate and will become brittle in as little as 2 years, if it is constantly exposed to the sun. We strongly recommend that your rattan furniture is either covered, or stored out of the sun when not in use. We are able to supply custom made covers for all outdoor products – please contact customer service for a quotation.

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Mould is also another element to be wary of. A naturally occuring organism that has the ability to grow on any surface where there is constant moisture.

Our outdoor cushions are weather-resistant and can take a light soaking, but if they are constantly wet and out of the sun, mould will develop, as it does on any surface that is kept damp and out of sunlight. This mould can be removed with mould remover, however it will return unless the fabric is kept in a dry environment.

Outdoor cushions generally come with a water-repellent finish; however you can increase and maintain this finish by using a fabric protector such as Scotchgard.

Wipe up any spills immediately before they get a chance to soak into the fabric and the cushion itself.

Most outdoor cushion covers can be removed and hand washed.

For any other information on the general cleaning and maintenance of your outdor furniture feel free to call us on 1300 067 138, visit our care page on our website or email us at