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Many Bothans Died to Bring us These Decorating Tips

Star Wars 4th May

Many Bothans Died to Bring us These Decorating Tips

A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away..

..one of the greatest stories ever known was told.  An epic tale of good and evil, of struggle and triumph, of duty and sacrifice, of corruption and redemption, of tyranny and rebellion, of loyalty and betrayal, of spaceships and asteroids, of friendship and rivalry, of monsters and robots, of heros and scoundrels, of love and lasers, of ancient mysteries and consistently poor marksmanship.

The first Star Wars film screened 37 years ago, and since then the epic space trilogy has delighted audiences across generations and throughout the world.  Star Wars references are deeply embedded in popular culture and indeed even into the English language itself.  Casual references to the themes and characters of the films permeate daily life, and are made with the assumption that every listener will understand.  Quotes from the films are now an inextricable part of the lexicon: we’d all speak very differently without phrases like “Evil empire”, “May the force be with you”, “Laugh it up, fuzzball!”, “You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy” and “Do or do not, there is no try”.  The cultural impact of these three films is almost too vast to measure.

(Let’s not mention the prequels.)

Over the decades, one burning question has long frustrated fans and critics alike: how would the inhabitants of the Star Wars universe have furnished their outdoor entertaining areas?  For far too long, this question has been met with no reply.  We’re here to change that.  May the 4th is Star Wars Day, and here on the Outdoor Living Direct blog, we’re bringing the noise!

Of course, no single configuration of outdoor furniture can be ideal for all locations in the Star Wars universe.  The grand scope of the franchise takes in a extraordinary range of landscapes and climate conditions, from the arid to the frozen to the verdant to the waterlogged.  Here’s our guide to outdoor decorating in some of these areas:


Tatooine is an old planet on the Outer Rim territories and consists largely of dry sandy deserts.  It is depicted as a desolate and often lawless frontier backwater, peopled by criminals, nomads and moisture farmers.  Tatooine’s apparent isolation makes it a tempting refuge for those anxious to avoid prying eyes.  For this reason the planet is home to several key characters in the Star Wars saga, including Luke Skywalker, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and Jabba the Hutt.

Tatooine orbits two suns, Tatoo I and Tatoo II.  This abundance of sunlight, combined with the lack of any appreciable tree cover on most of the planet, means that the shade provided by a good solid outdoor umbrella is essential to a comfortable entertaining area.  Cantilever umbrellas provide a less cluttered shaded area by keeping the pole out of the way to the side, and for this reason they should be at the very top of the shopping list for any Tatooine homeowner planning on remodelling the backyard.

Once you’ve got your shade sorted, it’s time to start looking for the ideal outdoor setting.  The rattan on our Grange 7 piece dining setting is UV resistant.  This is particularly useful on a planet with two suns.  This will round out the perfect area for the tired moisture farmer looking for somewhere to enjoy some blue milk while taking refuge from the harsh rays of double noon on Tatooine.


Dagobah is an outer rim planet in the Dagobah System teeming with lifeforms, but totally devoid of any cities or technology.  It was home to Jedi Master Yoda during his exile, after he discovered the system as one of 37 that had been deleted from the Jedi Archives.

Dagobah is a swampy, dank, muddy and humid place.  There’s barely a dry spot of ground on it.  It’s densely wooded though, and that means you have plenty of trees to hang a hammock from.  Hammocks don’t only provide an unbeatably comfy place to recline, they also keep you out of the warm stagnant water below.  This gives you a little bit of distance from all the leeches and pathogens it might be playing host to.  Back here on planet Earth, hammocks have been used for much the same reason by troops serving in jungle areas.

It’s also important to keep the moisture in mind when choosing an outdoor dining table for such an environment.  Our Consuela dining table is constructed from heavy gauge, high grade 304 stainless steel and a beautifully varnished plantation teak top, and is impervious to rust, rot or mildew, making it ideal for outdoor entertaining on Dagobah.

The Forest Moon of Endor

The Forest Moon of Endor, also known as the Sanctuary Moon, is the outermost of nine moons orbiting the gas planet Endor.  As per its name, much of the moon’s surface is densely wooded with massive pine and redwood forests.  It was chosen by the Galactic Empire as the location to construct the second Death Star battlestation.  This forest moon is populated by many forms of sentient life, including the Ewoks, who are famous for their role in the Battle of Endor, a crucial point in the downfall of the Galactic Empire.

Endor is a temperate, comfortable place, with dense tree cover to provide generous protection from the elements.  This makes it an ideal location to entertain outdoors.  Timber lounge settings make for an obvious choice of material to match the surrounding environment – our Burke 3 piece setting is built from 100% plantation hardwood and comes in a honey finish to complement the Forest Moon perfectly.

We trust you will use these decorating tips only for good, and will not be tempted by the dark side of the force.

May the 4th be with you!

The Importance of Hammocks Through History

The Importance of Hammocks Through History

Hammocks are great.  There’s nothing quite like one for enjoying a nice, shady patch of the outdoors when the weather’s lovely.

Despite the obvious advantages of the hammock enabled lifestyle, hammocks have been conspicuously missing through many of the most important events in human history.  There are a couple of reasons for this:

  1. A lack of hammockly knowledge.  As unthinkable as it is for us now to consider life without a hammock, it’s only in recent centuries that  hammocks have become known to most of the world.  Hammocks have their origins in pre-Columbian America: prior to European contact with Native Americans in the late fifteenth century, most of the world was missing out.
  2. A lack of hammockly preparation.  Sometimes people just forget to bring their hammock!

Here we will overview some of the more well-known turning points in human history, and consider the contribution that hammocks made to the events; or alternatively, how things might have been different with hammocks.

The Battle of Hastings

What happened:

In 1066, King Edward the Confessor died childless, leaving several claimants to contest the throne of England.  The Anglo-Saxon king Harold II was crowned king not long after Edward’s death, however he faced opposition from his own brother Tostig, by King Harold III of Norway, and from Duke William II of Normandy.   Tostig and King Harold III were killed in the Battle of Stamford Bridge, leaving William of Normandy as the only serious competition for the crown.

William’s army of Norman French cavalry, infantry and archers crossed the English Channel in September of 1066.  Harold II’s army, having just defeated Tostig and Harold III in Yorkshire, turned south to deal with the Norman invasion.  Crucially, Harold II left much of his army behind in the north.  On the morning of October 14, the forces met at Hastings.  Primary historical sources contradict each other over the exact events of the day, however we know that King Harold II died in this battle and the Norman forces were victorious.  This lead to Duke William II of Normandy to march on London and become William the Conqueror, the first Norman king of England.

The Bayeux Tapestry is an embroidered cloth illustrating the events of the Norman invasion of England.  Although it is 70 metres long, there is not a single hammock depicted upon it.

The Bayeux Tapestry is an embroidered cloth illustrating the events of the Norman invasion of England. Although it is 70 metres long, there is not a single hammock depicted upon it.

How it might have been different with hammocks:

If the Norman French of the 11th century had known the joys of hammocks, the Battle of Hastings probably wouldn’t have happened.

I mean, seriously, why would you bother?

Think about it: September is the northern hemisphere’s autumn, with winter just around the corner.  English winters are infamously cold, dark, rainy and miserable.  There’s nothing about going there that would appeal to the hammock enthusiast!

Hammock loving Normans would be much more inclined to cast their eyes south – towards the French Riviera.

If hammocks had prevented the Norman Conquest, the consequences would still be felt today – not least because the world’s most widely spoken language, English, would simply not exist as we know it without the Norman French and Anglo-Saxon linguistic collision that transpired.

The Apollo Moon Landings

What happened:

Apollo 15 Moon Landing

The Apollo program, conducted from 1961 to 1972, was a human spaceflight program run by NASA.  It was responsible for the landing of the first humans on the moon in 1969.  Over the course of six manned spaceflights, 12 men walked on the moon.  In addition to being a great scientific victory for humanity as a whole, this was a great symbolic victory for the United States of America in the Space Race with the Soviet Union.

Hammocks in space:

When you think about it, the moon seems an unlikely place to enjoy a hammock.  According to space.com, temperatures on the surface of the moon vary between -153 to 123 degrees celsius.  This means that most of the time it’s simply far too cold or far too hot to really be hammock weather.  The moon also has no breathable atmosphere, requiring astronauts to wear a space suit at all times.  This need to always be in a space suit means that it is practically impossible to operate a chilled beverage in the traditional manner, further marring the potential enjoyment to be had from the lunar hammock.

Further to this, the Apollo missions were a hugely expensive undertaking and astronauts were sent, in part, in the hopes that they’d undertake scientifically valuable tasks such as gathering samples of moon rocks.  Providing these astronauts with a hammock – and therefore something better to do – would seem to be an odd way to manage their productivity.

lunar module hammocks

Nonetheless, hammocks made their way onto the moon:  the Apollo Lunar Module contained a hammock, giving astronauts somewhere to lie down during their sleep period.  Neil Armstrong reportedly didn’t sleep so well, saying “The quality of the rest was poor in my case”, but no doubt having a hammock beat sleeping on the floor.  Astronaut Pete Conrad was more positive about lunar hammocks, saying “The hammocks were excellent. For the first 4 -1/2 hours, I slept; and it was a good, sound sleep.”.

(While we can assure you that our hammocks at Outdoor Living Direct are weather resistant for all Australian conditions, we wish to clarify that we have not tested them in extraplanetary envronments.  We recommend our hammocks for terrestrial use only.)

The Spanish Armada

What happened:

In 1588, Spain sent 130 ships carrying 8,000 sailors and 18,000 soldiers for a planned invasion of England.  A further 30,000 soldiers were mustered in the Spanish Netherlands to cross over to England by barge under the cover of the warships, making for a planned invasion force of some 56,000 troops.  In successive engagements, the English fleet routed the Spanish ships at sea, preventing this force from landing.  Weather conditions caused many of the Spanish ships to run aground on the coast of Ireland during the return, further compounding the Spanish defeat.

The Spanish Armada

How it might have been different with hammocks:

With hammocks, sailors would have probably gotten a better night’s sleep!

Hammocks were adopted for naval use not long after the Spanish Armada, with the Royal Navy formally adopting the canvas hammock in 1597.  Ships at sea tend to rock about quite violently in harsh weather conditions – this can cause sleeping sailors to be flung from their beds, leading to injury or even death.  A hammock moves in concert with the rocking of a ship, allowing sailors to lay flat even while the ship is being battered one way and the other by even the harshest waves and winds.

Are You Thinking of Changing the Course of History?

Don’t forget your hammock! 

Outdoor Living Direct’s exclusive range of premium hammocks provide ample space for comfort, are weather resistant in all Australian conditions, and built from a high strength fabric providing luxury and durability all in one.

Summer’s here, and our hammocks our on sale – there’s never been a better time to buy a hammock!