If you have a fondness to the extravagant styled furniture, do consider investing in a beautiful Victorian cast iron bench to be the centerpiece of your garden. Antique cast iron garden patio furniture is still some of the most desired furniture to date, but extremely rare to find and quite expensive for the average homeowner.
Cast Iron furniture is rarely manufactured as aluminum patio furniture has become the popular choice because it still is quite durable without the high cost of iron. Each year the aluminum patio furniture becomes more appealing as designs get more streamlined.
Target has come out with beautiful patio sets which have an upscale look, they would be just as nice inside the home than outside. Although the aluminum sets are quite popular, ornate benches are almost non existent, forcing many people to buy antiques.
Victorian cast iron benches are the perfect choice for a rose garden, or a Romanic gazebo. Cast iron is rare in our current market which makes it very unique. In comparison to any garden furniture to date, it still remains the extremely durable and can withstand harshest conditions such as rain, snow, hail and the sun over years without showing a shred of damage. Cast iron furniture can last a lifetime and can be cleaned with the simple products you have at home compared to the plastic furniture that breaks and yellows in the sun over just several months. Antique cast iron furniture is much more valuable than today’s popular aluminum furniture, partly because the material is no longer manufactured.
Today’s furniture manufactures tend to go for the easiest production techniques that fetch the most money. A company can make much more money producing an array of low quality -low cost materials which then can be affordable to 90% of the public than to produce something only a small percentage of the population can afford.
Companies also seem to be dodging the high quality materials because genuine natural materials are becoming quite rare which then becomes costly to make a profit. Today pressed board and plastics replaces wood in many dressers, armoires and closets. From a manufacturing standpoint, it is easier to produce because it is light weight, low quality and inexpensive. The majority of the public isn’t into quality, but low price. If that is not enough, plastic will never disintegrate, as it sits in the earths land fills for generations.
The Beauty Of Antique Victorian Cast Iron Furniture
The reign of Queen Victoria in England from 1837 to 1901 saw the start of the Victorian era, which grew from the elaborate Gothic style, into more of a development of romanticism which reflected in every style such as fashion, architecture and home furnishings. The Victorian era spawned into several well-known styles, including Gothic Revival, Italianate, Empire, and Queen Anne.
The Victorian style was more beautiful than practical and excessive in design as we see in many of the cast iron furniture. Wealth became a status symbol during this time, and their pocket books opened up to the best even if it was in the garden. Many designers and architects took the ideas from the styling’s of the French, Italian, Tudor, Egyptian, and Gothic architecture as the height of mass-production allowed the opportunity of an array of architectural elements to become easily accessible. Cast iron furniture became popular as it became more available. Major manufacturers of the time, such as J. L. Mott Iron Works in New York let you create your own designs, offering through mail-order catalogs a wide selection of iron urns that could be customized by swapping out different bases. In addition many custom finishes were available at the time such as black,bronze and aged green. .
How To Clean YOUR Cast Iron Furniture
After a harsh winter, uncovered patio metal furniture can start showing signs of rust which in technical terms is a result of the oxidation of iron or metal from the presence of water and oxygen which reacts with the metal. Prolonged rust that has not been taken care of can cause permanent damage to cast furniture. Although cleaning rusty furniture is a daunting task to many because it simply doesn’t come off, there are some aged tricks to getting the rust off easier.
Natural household products can clean up the rust doing the arm and leg work for you. The acid in white vinegar or lemons eats away at rust leaving you with less work than normal. Leave the vinegar or lemons sit on the rust for a few moments. (Remember that the rust is not apart of the metal, but the layer on top) The vinegar will eat away at the rust lifting it up so it will come off easier when you scrub your bench.
Baking Soda is another natural product that is quite effective on rust. Make a paste of baking soda and water that will stick to the rust. Leave it enough time to loosen the rust. Use a wire wool, or wire brush to scrub the rusted area. Do use gloves when cleaning any rust. Be sure to bring in your patio furniture throughout the winter months to prevent rust from returning.
How to Paint Cast Iron Furniture
The latest trends in 2010 are bright paint such as peacock blue, butter yellow, gloss white, apple green, canary yellow, or creamy butter colors. We see that with decorator Charlotte Moss and Kelly Wearstler. Hollywood Regency style uses a lot of bright colors against black and white toned rooms. So don’t be afraid of painting your outdoor cast iron benches a bright yellow. Today we see explosive colors in all white interiors, or on the contrast, antique looks with old world finishes.
Be sure before you paint to clean the surface of the furniture with a wire brush. Scraping away all the cracked paint, and rust will ensure a better overall beautiful end result. Spray your furniture down with the garden hose to wash away the rust and extra particles that were lifted during cleaning. Allow your furniture to dry in the sun, being completely dry before attempting to paint.
Use an oil primer paint specially formulated for rust prevention, such as Rust-Oleum’s Flat Rusty Metal Primer
Rust-Oleum Flat Rusty Metal Primer has a unique fish oil vehicle that penetrates rust to bare metal forcing out corrosive moisture and air. It has outstanding film forming properties which provide a tight bond, a long lasting protection to sound rusted steel. If you are working with a smaller project, consider Rust Rust Reformer which instantly converts rust to a protected paintable surface.
This Victorian Bench by Kramer Bros is absolutely beautiful. Consider priming a white bench with a white primer.
1: Rust Oleum Cover Stain Primer-Sealer – TINTABLE!
You can get almost any color of paint in an oil based finish at your local Sherwin Williams, Benjamin Moore or better paint store. Here are a couple suggestions that would make a statement: