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Our designers and crafts persons use their experience and skills to incorporate materials that are best suited for each particular furnishing. In this way, your enjoyment is extended through their fine qualities and enduring beauty.

We offer you this Product Care Guide so that you might have information about component materials and their proper care.


·Stone and Marble
·Glass
·Solid Woods
·Wood Veneer
·Upholstery
·Outdoor Fabric and Furniture Care
·Leather
·
Aluminum and Stainless Steel
·Countertops & Baths


General Considerations

It is important to differentiate between naturally-occurring materials (like wood, leather and stone) and those that are engineered materials (like glass, steel, aluminum, leatherette and blended fabrics). Naturally-occurring materials will have grains, textures and patterns that are irregular and non-repeating (i.e., they are natural) and that is part of their beauty. The apparent qualities of engineered materials can be controlled and made more consistent through the manufacturing process.

All materials, whether naturally-occurring or engineered will require care appropriate to their composition and unique qualities.

A good rule of thumb when caring for any item is to start off with the gentlest approach. For example, when cleaning a dining chair, dry wiping with a soft cloth is preferred to wiping with a damp cloth. Using a cloth dampened with water is preferred to using a cloth with a chemical cleaning agent. Start with the softest to be safest. It is wise to always read the “Directions for use” section on the label of any cleaning agent.

Remember, pure water is nature’s solvent. Avoid abrasive cleansers and harsher solvents like paint thinner, methyl hydrate and acetone. Test any cleaning agent or material on an inconspicuous location of the furnishing to determine if it is safe to use.

Let’s look at recommended care instructions for materials that are to be found in our products.

 

 

 


Stone and Marble

Material Description:
Stone and, in particular, the marble that is featured in many of our furnishings is a naturally-occurring material. While it is quite durable, it is also porous and can be subject to staining and chemical attack. As appropriate, stone and marble surfaces can be treated with specially-formulated sealants but good care is the best protector.

Regular Care:
Wipe or brush dust and debris off the surfaces of stone or marble.

Be Careful:
DON’T put wet beverage containers directly on the surface (liquids might stain).
DON’T put colored materials directly on the surface (dyes might transfer).
DON’T use anything that is acidic (for example, vinegar, lemon juice or rust and lime cleaners) because these will attack the calcium that is naturally occurring in stone.
DON’T use furniture polishes, detergents or patented cleansers.

Special Cleaning and Care:
USE a dry cloth for wiping or a slightly damp one for cleaning, followed by a dry wipe up.
USE a damp cloth with a dab of mild soap detergent for cleaning messy spots.
USE a soft cloth to wipe up any wetness on the surface (from beverages or spills).
USE spot protectors (like coasters and pads) to accommodate wet, hot or dyed items.

 

 

 


Glass

Material Description:
Glass uses a naturally-occurring material that is formed through the application of very high temperatures. Hence, it is engineered into many shapes and consistencies. Some glass is near perfect and clear while other samples (like blown glass) may have deliberate design features.

Regular Care:
Wipe or brush dust and debris off the surfaces. Finger prints can be removed with slightly soapy water but a patented glass cleaner is to be preferred. For all cleaning tasks, use “lint free” cloths.

Be Careful:
DON’T apply cleaners with rough cleaning pads. Glass is durable but can be scratched and dulled by gritty residues.

Special Cleaning and Care:
USE a dry or a slightly damp cloth for wiping and removing dust.
USE a damp cloth with a dab of mild soap detergent or use a patented glass cleaner for cleaning messy spots.

 

 

 

Solid Woods

Material Description:
Wood is a naturally-occurring material where there is a great variety of types, grains and qualities. Some do very well in withstanding exposure to the outdoor environment (e.g., teak); others need to be protected. Some are hardwoods (ash, beech, maple, walnut); others are softwoods (birch, fir, pine). Most of the wood used in our furniture is of the hardwood variety. Woods can be left in a finished but raw state or can be stained with a color, painted, lacquered or varnished. Hence, proper treatment of wood can take a variety of forms.

Wood veneers will be considered under a separate heading.

Regular Care:
Wood is subject to damage through dents, scratches and burns so exposing wood furniture to this treatment will diminish its fine appearance. Untreated wood can pick up unwanted stains and discoloration (especially in the case of softwoods) from uneven exposure to sunlight. As well, wood finishes can suffer from abrasion and exposure to solvents including untreated water spills. Regular care of wood then includes protecting it from abrasions and wetness.

Be Careful:
DON’T leave beverage glasses or hot items on a wooden surface without a proper coaster or trivet.
DON’T use an excess of water to clean an unfinished wood surface.
DON’T use silicone-based cleaners.
DON’T leave any soft or rubbery substances like paraffin (candles) in prolonged contact with a finished or unfinished wood surface.
DON’T drag items with rough bases across a wood surface.
DON’T drop heavy, hard objects onto a wood surface. Wood will not break but it will retain a dent.

Special Cleaning and Care:
Fortunately, damaged solid wood surfaces with dents, scratches and burns can be treated and sometimes restored. Still, the best care is preventative.

Controlling the range of environmental moisture and temperature will benefit the wood by minimizing expansion and contraction that might affect joints.

Specially-formulated wood treatments are available for different applications from cleaning oily grime and wax buildup (not the case with our new furniture) to restoring natural oils (as in the use of tung and teak oil specifically for tropical teak wood). Determine the finish on the wood to apply the proper care.
Uncoated wood – USE a dry or slightly damp cloth followed by a dry wipe.
Painted wood – USE a dry or slightly damp cloth.
Varnished wood – USE a dry cloth or surface wood treatment like lemon oil.
Lacquered wood – USE a dry or slightly damp cloth.
Oiled wood – USE a matching surface wood treatment like lemon or teak oil.

 

 

 


Wood Veneer

Material Description:
Wood veneer is a thin sheet of actual wood that has been applied with an adhesive to an underlying solid surface. A finished veneered surface can be cared for in much the same manner as a solid wood surface.

Regular Care:
The veneer is subject to damage through dents, scratches and burns so exposing wood furniture to this treatment will diminish its fine appearance. The finishes on a veneer can suffer from abrasion and exposure to solvents including untreated water spills. Regular care then includes protecting it from abrasions and wetness.

Be Careful:
DON’T expose it to any conditions that might also harm solid wood.
DON’T abrade veneered surfaces or edges because rough treatment can penetrate and expose the underlying material.
DON’T expose it to extreme dampness (i.e., soaking) as that can cause a failure of the adhesive and result in the veneer separating from the underlying material.

Note: In normal residential and commercial usage, veneered wood will provide a very durable wood surface.

Special Cleaning and Care:
USE a dry cloth or surface wood treatment like lemon oil as most veneered wood surfaces are varnished.

 

 

 

 

Upholstery

Material Description:
Upholstery materials can range from naturally-occurring wool to synthetics like PU leatherette. Fabric blends can combine natural fibers with synthetic ones (e.g., wool-polyester) or a number of synthetic fibers (polyester-acrylic).

Regular Care:
Whatever the fabric or blend might be, a first step in care is to promptly remove any foreign substances that come in contact with the fabric. Regular vacuuming of upholstery with a soft brush head as well as the lifting and turning of cushions provide good opportunities for removal of loose debris.
Depending on manner of use, regular (e.g., annual) professional cleaning might be warranted.

Treatment for leather upholstery is dealt with under a separate heading.

Be Careful:
DON’T apply any cleansing liquid that is not described in labelled instructions or that has not been first tested on an inconspicuous place.

Special Cleaning and Care:
USE pure water in moderation (don’t soak fabric) to clean spots. If this does not fully treat the spot, a patented upholstery cleaning agent may be used according to instructions. Even then, test it first in an inconspicuous location on the furnishing.
DO turn cushions where designed to do so in order to create even wear over the lifetime of the fabric.

 

 

 

 

Outdoor Fabric and Furniture Care

Material Description:
There is a variety of materials to be found in outdoor furniture. Properly designed furniture employs materials that are proven to be suitable for an outdoor environment. Two elements at play are water and airborne dirt.

Regular Care:
Having furniture under cover (e.g., a sheltered area of the patio) when not in use will protect it from exposure to excess water and blowing dirt. In sunny periods, any protective covers should be removed to air the furnishings thereby preventing moisture from accumulating. Before use, brush off any cushions or surfaces that have been exposed to airborne dirt.

Where possible, remove outdoor furniture from the environment when not in use for extended periods of time or when extreme weather conditions are expected (e.g., cold winter months).

Be Careful:
DON’T use any bleach solution on fabrics that have been affected by mold or mildew (specially-formulated cleaning agents that are safe on fabrics are available on the market).

Special Cleaning and Care:
USE a sponge and water to clean surfaces. Add a sparing amount of a mild cleansing agent (e.g., dishwashing soap) to treat spots or grime.
USE a non-bleaching fungicide (that is available in North America) to treat materials that have be affected by mold and mildew. Traditional methods include solutions of vinegar or tea tree oil.
USE exposure to fresh air and sunlight on items that have been treated for mold or mildew as this will delay their reappearance.

 

 

 

 

Leather

Material Description:
Leather is a naturally-occurring material in that it comes from animal hides. They do require a curing process called “tanning” and, often, coloring in preparation for other applications. Leather is durable but it is also porous and can be subject to staining, scarring and weathering.

Regular Care:
Depending on where the leather has been applied, a dry wiping or vacuuming may be sufficient for regular care. Be careful to lift any abrasive or hard, sharp objects that might be sitting on a leather surface. Leather benefits from the right kind of moisture like that provided by specially-formulated leather care conditioners.

Be Careful:
DON’T leave untreated leather in hot or sun-soaked locations. It will dry out and crack.
DON’T leave uneven weights on or against upholstered leather surfaces. They can stretch the leather so that it might not return to its original form.
DON’T expose leather to excessive moisture or prolonged dampness. Mold might begin to form.

Special Cleaning and Care:
USE saddle soap to clean and restore moisture to leather.
USE specially-formulated leather care conditioners (generally cream lotions) as these will restore the natural suppleness of leather.
USE a dry cloth for water-based spills. If “sticky” materials are in that spill, use a slightly damp cloth to remove the foreign substance and wipe dry. Repeat if necessary but do not overwork the process. A specially-formulated leather cleaner is generally the best treatment after a first attempt with water.
USE a dry cloth for oil-based stains. Tamp with a dry, white cloth but do not overwork.

 

 

 

 

Metals

Material Description:
Steel provides a hard, durable surface that can be powder coated or chromed. In many pieces of furniture where steel is used, care relates to the nature of the finished surface.

Regular Care:
Wiping steel surfaces with a soft cloth is normally all that is required to keep them clean. If marked, a damp cloth would be the sensible next step in cleaning. Dampness will not harm a coated steel surface but prolonged exposure to water could cause rusting as water always finds its way into the smallest of gaps. This will first occur where a surface coating has been breached or near welded joints. In normal interior home settings, this would not be a problem.

Be Careful:
DON’T apply any gritty cleansers as this will scratch and dull a coated surface.

Special Cleaning and Care:
USE a damp cloth suitable for the surface coating.
USE a mild soapy solution (e.g., dish detergent) to clean marks and stains from coated steel surfaces. Dry afterwards with a soft cloth.

 

 

Countertops

Dry Countertops
Film will build up on countertops if water is left to dry on the surface. This film will dull the countertop surface, making the finish appear blotchy and uneven. To prevent film build-up, it is very important to wipe the countertop completely dry immediately after spills and cleaning.
Some colors of counter and bath surfaces may require more frequent cleaning to maintain a uniform finish. Darker colors tend to require more attention than lighter colors. Over time, even with proper care, your countertop will acquire a sheen. Dark colors may show light scratches more readily. But rest assured — restoring your countertops to their original glory is an easy process.


Preventing Heat Damage
     While counter and bath surfaces solid surface are heat resistant, as with all countertop materials, it is important to minimize direct heat exposure to protect your surface and investment.
     Important — Do not place hot pots, pans, etc. directly on the countertop surface.  
Always use heat trivets or pads when placing hot objects on any surface. Always use a trivet under portable heat-generating appliances, such as a toaster oven. Allow cookware to cool before placing it into a counter surface.


Preventing Other Damage
     In most cases, counter and bath surfaces can be repaired if damaged. Be sure to follow these guidelines to help you prevent any permanent damage to your counter and bath surfaces.
     Avoid getting strong chemicals, such as paint removers, oven cleaners, etc., on your counter and bath surfaces. If a spill does occur, promptly flush the surface with water to fully rinse off the chemical. Do not cut directly on counter and bath surfaces. Use a cutting board. 
     Boiling water alone will not damage your counter and bath surfaces sink. However, it is a recommended practice to run cold water from the faucet while pouring boiling water into the sink.

 
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