We have but together loads of information for you to read, so you can get a better idea of products generally and those sold here at RLHomeDecor.
Candles infuse rooms with warmth and atmosphere, with those that are fragranced adding a pleasing scent to spaces too. The wax composition of candles has an effect on burn time and on scent diffusion in a room.
The most common and oldest man-made candle wax:
- offers room-filling scent thanks to a high melting point
- has good stability as it burns
- might leave black soot marks inside glass candle holders
This vegetable wax is a renewable source:
- burns cleanly with no toxins and little to no soot
- soy candles burn longer and cooler than their paraffin counterparts
- have an excellent scent throw
- wax spills can be cleaned up by simply using warm water and soap
Similar in consistency and appearance to soy wax:
- made from extracted and purified wax from different plants
- often mixed with other wax types for improved stability
Beeswax is completely natural with its own unique scent:
- releases negative ions into the air for purification
- has an extended burn time compared to other types
Consisting of reed sticks and an oil and alcohol solution, diffusers deliver a constant fragrance that’s perfect for greeting you when you enter a room. They’re ideal for the summer months as warmth helps increase the fragrance intensity. Unlike candles, they don’t require lighting to enjoy the scent, but you’ll still need to keep them out of reach of children and pets.
Deliver a hit of fragrance with room sprays, for an instant refresh. Room sprays are a great way to add a pleasant fragrance to the room after cooking.
Tropical hardwoods, such as teak and eucalyptus, are naturally weather resistant due to their high oil content. This makes pieces easy to look after, as you can keep them outside throughout the seasons.
Note that these hardwoods can develop cracks along the grain after they’ve been exposed to the elements.
Over time, teak will weather to a beautiful silvery grey colour. It’s a natural timber so variations in colour and markings will occur from piece to piece.
How to care for it
Give your hardwood furniture a yearly scrub with soapy water, followed by a thorough rinse. This removes algae and pollution to restore the timber’s surface, keeping it in good condition.
If you want your teak furniture to look less weathered, restore some of the original colour by applying cleaner, followed by brightener and finish off with oil. Make sure the timber is completely dry when you apply the oil, otherwise it can blacken.
Rattan Effect Furniture
Most of our woven furniture is made from synthetic wicker. It looks like the real thing but has the advantage of being weatherproof. Soft to the touch, man-made wicker is highly supple and both UV and tear resistant.
Although it can withstand very cold or very hot conditions, you’ll find synthetic wicker becomes stiffer as it gets cold. Conversely, as it gets warm it’ll soften and return to its original suppleness.
How to care for it
As it’s low maintenance, woven furniture’s easy to clean: just use a pressure hose on a low setting. There are also non-foaming cleaners available that are specially formulated for woven furniture. Please note however, that foam residue does tend to get trapped in the weave and attract dirt.
Wrought iron and steel
Wrought iron and steel furniture is given an anti-rust treatment and finished with a tough coating to ensure it lasts. We can’t guarantee that the steel won’t corrode, but the occasional summer shower shouldn’t harm it. Our steel furniture is powder coated for durability against the elements.
Cast aluminium furniture can’t rust, but if the polyester coating is damaged it could peel.
How to care for it
Caring for metal furniture is generally quite easy, as it’s usually been given a hardwearing finishing coat. Gently wash pieces with a sponge and warm, soapy water – don’t scrub with anything abrasive, as this could scratch the finish.
If the surface of your wrought iron, steel or cast aluminium furniture has chipped and the bare metal beneath is exposed, touch up the paintwork either with the paint provided or with car paint in a matching colour.
Caring for garden furniture accessories
If parasols get wet, leave them open to dry out. They should always be taken down and stored in high winds and throughout winter.
Our cushions are covered in a variety of textiles that need to be cared for differently.
Printed cotton covers are soft and comfortable, but can fade if exposed to too much sunlight. All are treated with a soil-resistant coating.
- Store in a dry place
- Do not leave out in the rain
- Sponge clean with upholstery shampoo
- Keep under cover when not in use: the covers won’t be damaged if they get wet, but the fillings may take a while to dry out
- Do not store cushions in polythene bags or they may develop mould
Our garden furniture covers are made from weather-proof fabric that allows air to circulate. Before fitting the covers, ensure that the furniture, cushions and parasols are dry.
In it’s nature cast iron is incredibly strong and resilient to most of what the weather can throw at it. They will always come pre-drilled for ease of application.
These signs are durable and fantastic for covering large areas. Tin is durable but not as much as cast iron, we recommend keeping out of direct sunlight and also to keep out of sustained bad and frosty weather. This can discolour and make the item rust if these precautions are not met. All signs will come with either holes for screws, crocodile clips for you to hang from or string.
MDF is fantastic for making signs, they are strong, hard to dent and chip, and also comes in what ever shape you like. This is why it’s the go to material for so many sign companies, including ourselves. This is why it’s used so often for interiors, but that shouldn’t put you off from using them outside. Your correct if you think water will warp the sign and that sun light will bleach the colours on the sign. But there is ways in which you can still enjoy your signs outside. Unfortunately, there isn’t much you can do to prevent bleaching, apart from not placing the sign in direct sunlight. There is ways you can restrict moister. If they are not already coated, it will state if it is painted or lacquered on the product of choice. You can always lacquer it your self when the item gets delivered. You can buy special lacquer, from specialist Furniture paint distributors or you can just use PVA glue, there is many tutorials on youtube on how to do this. This will stop any water from penetrating the sign and making it warp.
- All outdoor lights are IP protected which ensures it is protected from water and moisture
- Our outdoor lighting range offers both general lighting, such as security lights and wall lights to illuminate space and decorative lighting to create ambience in the garden whilst relaxing or socialising
- Security and motion sensors are great for front porches
- Solar stakes or path lights are great for illuminating a pathway
- Uplighters are great for highlighting selected parts within the garden for mood and ambience
- Line lights are great for decorative lighting within the garden or patio space
Solar is a fantastic way to light up your garden without creating more work your yourself. This takes its energy from the sun and converts it into electricity to power the light. Solar lights can be placed anywhere in the garden to create that fantastic look without having to trail wires around your garden. Solar lights are not as bright as mains lights, also if you don’t place the solar panel in sunlight they will struggle to get enough power to light up for a long amount of time.
Mains lights are the optimal choice if you are happy to run cables through walls and or plug them into outside plug sockets. They will always be readily available to use, even if they are in dark spaces with no sunlight unlike solar power. Mains lights are also more powerful and so can be brighter than solar. They also will never run out of charge.
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GRADES OF LEATHER
There are generally considered four types of leather quality grades, listed from best to worst: full grain leather, top grain leather, genuine leather, and bonded leather.
In fact not actual leather it represents the look extremely well. Faux leather is one of several names given to artificial or synthetic leather. These names are often used to describe specific end uses of synthetic leather products such as faux leather (sofa, chair and of cause bags), There are three primary types of faux leather construction: polyurethane (“PU”), polyvinyl chloride (PVC – “Vinyl”), and silicone.
Vinyl synthetic leather has been produced in the United States since the 1940s, initially for products such as shoes, automobile interiors and upholstery. In the late 1950s DuPont and other chemical companies began developing polyurethane products. Silicone upholstery fabrics are relatively new having been introduced in 2010.
Silicone, polyurethane and vinyl synthetic leathers are used in making clothing, upholstery, and product covers, but each is better for certain applications than others. PU fabric is softer, more flexible, and breathable, so it’s more commonly used for making high-wear products, like clothing and upholstery (surfaces that come into direct contact with skin). Vinyl is not as breathable as PU, but this is often ideal for products that need to repel moisture such as book bindings or cases for electronic devices. Silicone is suitable for virtually any application since it possess the advantages offered by both PU and Vinyl.
Known as the lowest of the grades of leather, bonded leather is made from production leftovers. Also referred to as reconstituted or blended, this material must contain at least fifty percent animal hide. Created through an extensive process, bonded leather consists of shredded fibers and hide scraps. After combining these pieces with a bonding solution like polyurethane or latex, the mixture is spread onto a paper or cloth backing. Once this step is complete, bonded leather can be embossed with a leather-like texture. Bonded leather is not as strong as top grain or even genuine leather. As such, manufacturers typically use it as a less visible component in their products. Common uses include soles and heels for shoes, textile linings, and book covers.
Bridle leather is the result of an in-depth tanning technique. Made using only the highest quality cowhide, this type of leather is smooth, flexible, and comfortable. Crafting bridle leather is time-consuming and intensive, so using materials that are free of flaws or defects is critical. During the tanning process, the hide is saturated with grease, then waxed and dyed to give it a rich, glossy look. The finished item is stiff at first, but it becomes more pliable and develops a unique patina over time. As the name suggests, bridle leather was originally designed for use in the equestrian trade. Due to its strength and firmness, it also makes high-quality belts, straps, and gun holsters.
Versatile as well as comfortable, deerskin leather is the tanned hide of a deer. Since it can be difficult to work with, this high-end product is not mass produced. Several characteristics draw people to deerskin leather. This light, thin material has plenty of stretch, so it is easy to shape and allows for some airflow. Despite its lean and supple feel, it is also among the most durable types of leather. Deerskin retains its original, soft texture even after it gets wet and dries. This malleable leather is a favourite of high-end fashion houses. Designers often use deerskin for handbags, shoes, and coats. Although not water resistant, these products last a long time with proper care.
FULL GRAIN LEATHER
Full grain is the longest lasting, highest quality grade of leather available. It holds the pattern of the animal’s skin and has a soft, natural look and warm feel. Because it comes from the top layer of the cow’s hide, full grain leather is stronger and more breathable than others. Never sanded or buffed, the surface keeps its unique characteristics, including small imperfections like pores, wrinkles, and scars. Minimal processing preserves the skin’s tension, allowing it to keep its moisture-resistant barrier. The enduring superiority of full grain leather makes it an ideal choice for top-of-the-line handbags, briefcases, shoes, and any bag or accessory that gets heavy use. Full grain pieces also develop a lovely, rich patina over time.
Corrected grain leather, or “genuine leather”, is at the third tier when it comes to quality. This type of leather feels stiff and cold when compared to high-grade pieces. Removing the two outermost layers of the hide leaves an intermediate section, which is the part used for genuine leather. An artificial texture and colour spray treatment is applied to create a natural look. Genuine leather is an affordable alternative to high-end options. As such, this leather works well for everything from backpacks to briefcases, but it is far less durable than full or top grain.
Goatskin leather, also known as Morocco leather, makes up nine percent of the world’s supply. Though the majority of the industry works with cowhide, goat leather has a wide range of uses. Lanolin, which occurs naturally in the goat’s skin, keeps this leather supple and minimises the need for maintenance. Not only does this natural moisturiser help the hide stay soft and durable, but it also creates a water-resistant surface. The final product is warm, breathable, and lightweight. Long-lasting, sturdy, and attractive, goatskin leather is used primarily for clothes, gloves, and bags, though some manufacturers will integrate it into shoes or book covers.
Lambskin leather is crafted from the hides of young sheep. These delicate skins require a gentler tanning process, resulting in finely grained leather known for its buttery smooth texture. Flexible and lightweight, lambskin produces one of the softest varieties of leather available. Over time, it becomes even softer and smoother. This extremely comfortable material is also more fragile than tougher, thicker leathers. While not as expensive as full grain, lambskin leather is also associated with upscale products. Many brands turn to this supple leather for pieces that are meant to be touched frequently or worn against the skin, like jackets, gloves, and wallets.
Created from top-grain cowhide, nubuck leather is similar to suede, but it is stronger and longer-lasting. This style is velvety to the touch but scratches easily. Made from the outer layer, or grain side, of the hide, nubuck leather is tough and durable. The surface is sanded and dyed to produce a clean, uniform appearance. Any animal skin can be used to make nubuck leather, though cow or calf is the most popular. While nubuck leather is soft, it can show marks and scuffs. Because of this, it’s usually reserved for items that see gentle use, like fine clothing, bags, and occasionally car interiors.
SPLIT GRAIN LEATHER
To make them thinner and more manageable, thick animal hides are often separated into at least two layers. The portion closest to the animal’s flesh is called split leather, split grain leather, or genuine leather. Split leather does not bear the same character marks or grain as the outside layer of the hide. It can be turned into suede or sanded, embossed, and pigmented to look and feel more like top grain leather. However, hides that go through surface coating loose their breathability and are not as strong as higher grade leathers. While suede split grain leather is a popular choice for clothing and accessories, stamped and treated varieties of split grain leather work best for other applications. Low-impact areas of car interiors like steering wheels and door linings regularly use this material as a covering. The rarely touched outside and back panels of furniture may also feature split leather.
Suede is made from the underside of the animal skin, typically lamb, calf, goat, or deer. This leather finish can come from flipping the hide upside down to reveal the fuzzy backing or from removing the top grain to leave only the soft, fibrous bottom layer behind. After a buffing and brushing process, these hides have a velvety texture that is pleasant to the touch. Because the tough exterior skin has been removed, suede leather is soft, lightweight, and pliant but less durable than full grain or top grain. Suede fabric is sought after for accessories such as dress shoes, bags, and clutches. It is more durable than many kinds of cloth, making this leather excellent for linings and clothing. However, delicate, porous suede will not hold up well to constant stress or moisture.
TOP GRAIN LEATHER
Top grain leather has a smooth, uniform appearance. Slightly thinner than full grain leather, manufacturers generally have an easier time working with top grain. Once it goes through a sanding process, which removes a thin surface layer and takes away any unwanted markings, top grain leather has a flawless texture. At this stage, it can be stamped or imprinted with any design, including patterns that mimic snake, alligator, or ostrich skin. Used in both high-end and mid-range products, a wide array of purses, pocketbooks, belts, and other accessories are made with top grain leather. While the removal of the toughest fibers reduces the durability of top grain, a protective finish can prevent most stains or scrapes.
Cubic zirconia (CZ)
This is the cubic crystalline form of zirconium dioxide (ZrO2). The synthesized material is hard and usually colourless, but may be made in a variety of different colours. It should not be confused with zircon, which is a zirconium silicate (ZrSiO4). It is sometimes erroneously called cubic zirconium.
Because of its low cost, durability, and close visual likeness to diamond, synthetic cubic zirconia has remained the most gemologically and economically important competitor for diamonds since commercial production began in 1976. Its main competitor as a synthetic gemstone is a more recently cultivated material, synthetic moissanite.
Stainless Steal, Nickel Free
The term “nickel free” can be confusing since jewellery marked nickel free is still allowed to contain a very small amount of nickel … but it is such a tiny amount that it takes extremely sensitive instruments to measure it.
The European Union’s (EU) Nickel Directive limits the amount of nickel that may be released onto the skin from jewellery and other products. The EU Directive’s type of measurement is different than measuring the percentage of nickel that exists in an alloy’s composition, it measures how much nickel will actually migrate to your skin – which is what you want to limit.
In the European Union, Jewellery marked as “nickel free” must meet the strict EU Nickel Directive. If you are sensitive to nickel, this is the best standard for you to use when purchasing “nickel free/hypoallergenic” mixed metal (alloys or plated). All of my jewellery meets the EU Nickel Directive (or is naturally nickel free).
The standard measurement of gold is the karat. Pure gold is 24 karats, meaning 24 out of 24 parts are gold. To increase its strength, gold is combined with other metal alloys. For example, 18K gold is 18 parts gold and 6 parts other alloys; 14K gold is 14 parts gold and 10 parts other alloys. 10K gold is more durable, with 10 parts gold to 14 parts other alloys.
Alloys used with yellow gold include copper and silver. Rose gold is created by combining gold with large amounts of copper, while green gold results from mixing gold with copper, silver and zinc. When creating white gold, pure gold is combined with copper, zinc and nickel or palladium.
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