Now that our focus has shifted to the great outdoors, we’re constantly dreaming up ways to make our open-air living spaces as beautiful and comfortable as possible. And with today’s wide variety of weather-defying textiles, from curtains to cushions, stripes to polka dots, it’s now easier than ever.
With that in mind, this year we streamlined our indoor/outdoor fabric selection to include only fabrics made from solution-dyed acrylics. Bye-bye, polyester! This means that regardless of what fabric you choose — Sunbrella® or one of our other sun-loving fabrics — you’ll enjoy the same worry-free benefits.
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So what does solution-dyed mean, anyway? Before we get there, let’s back up and talk about ordinary fabrics and how they get their color. In a nutshell, dyes are added to the surface of the yarn or fabric, so the color really only penetrates the outer layer. You could compare this to slicing open a bright red radish to find a white center.
With solution-dyed fabrics, however, the actual fibers that make up these fabrics are first dyed with UV stabilized pigments before they’re woven into the yarns to create the fabric. This is what gives these textiles their inherent color throughout — much like a carrot. It’s also why they’re so fabulous.
The fully saturated fibers of the fabric allow it to endure exposure to the sun without fading. You can count on your cushions, pillows, umbrellas and curtains to keep their same splashy color, which is the reason why you bought them in the first place.
Solution-dyed fabrics are super durable, standing up to years of repeated cleanings. Although mild soap cleans most common stains, this fabric can stand up to the use of stronger cleaning solvents, like bleach, for those times that call for a deep cleaning.
Remember the rough and stiff outdoor textiles of the past? They never would have made it through the threshold of any home. But thanks to solution-dying, today’s outdoor fabrics have a much softer hand and texture and can compete with most indoor fabrics. So it’s really kind of a no-brainer that these stain-resistant, colorfast fabrics are widely used inside homes and are such a great match for families with young children and pets.