Can I use this furniture outdoors?
Yes, you can. But the elements of the weather will eventually take its toll and the furniture will not last indefinitely. The majority of our customers place their furniture or accessories either indoors or on a 3-season or covered porch. What you do is your decision, but if you do place a piece outdoors, be reminded that the sun, rain, and moisture will eventually wear it down. Also, if you choose to have your furniture outdoors, it is advised that you spray it with a mixture of 2/3 mineral spirits and 1/3 boiled linseed oil, at least once a year.
Note: You will want to make sure that your willow piece has completely dried before use.
Do you treat your furniture and accessories with some type of preservative, and if so, what do you use?
Yes, the entire product is treated with a sprayed-on mixture of approximately 2/3 mineral spirits and 1/3 boiled linseed oil. This mixture helps preserve the piece(s), keeps insects out, and helps the bark adhere. In addition to this, our chairs, tabletops and mirror frames are covered with a light coat of semi-clear polyurethane.
What types of woods do you use in the products you create?
Various wood types are incorporated into our creations. In the smaller accessory type pieces (baskets, twig signs, picture frames, mirror frames, etc) swamp willow saplings are primarily used. In our larger furniture creations (loveseats, chairs, end tables, coffee tables, etc) there are generally three or four wood types incorporated into each piece. These include (primarily) hardwood framework, Alder bracing, and Swamp Willow as the bentwood aspect.
How do you bend the wood so perfectly?
Very carefully. Really, it all comes down to being very selective in finding and harvesting the right kind of willow. This, without a doubt, is the most important factor behind manipulating the willow. Immediately, upon harvesting the product, the willow needs to be worked while it is green (still retaining its moisture). Gradually, the fibers are broken by slowly bending the willow inch by inch until you have worked the full length of the sapling. Then and only then is it ready to be incorporated into a chair.