Textile Talk: Fabrics Labeled for Outdoor Use

If you believe all outdoor textiles are the same, think again. Today’s outdoor high-quality fabrics range from tough polyester-based materials to startlingly marine vinyl and acrylics. That means you can reupholster your outdoor furniture and keep it looking new even in the harshest weather. But before you choose your favorite, make sure you know exactly what you want and how long your chosen cloth will last.

Choosing the perfect outdoor fabric for your project might be difficult, but we’re going to make it simple today! We’ll walk you through all you need to know about choosing the best outdoor textile for your needs in terms of durability, cost, and appearance.

Begin by looking for high-quality fabrics that are labeled for outdoor use. These textiles have been specifically treated to resist water, stains, UV light, and other environmental factors. We have a large selection of outdoor furniture fabrics at Yorkshire, but today we’ll go over some of the most popular outdoor high-quality fabrics, their benefits, and which projects they’re most suited for.


One crucial factor to consider when choosing fabric for your outdoor project is how durable you want it to be. If a greater range of designs and styles, as well as a lower price, are most important to you, seek for Polyester-based Outdoor textiles labeled for outdoor usage.

Because many are UV treated for only 500 light hours before fading, they should be carried inside when not in use. Warm water and a mild soapy solution are all that is required to clean them. With cushions or light upholstery, these materials are ideal for giving a personal touch to an outdoor space.

Solution-dyed Acrylic or Solution-dyed Olefin

Look for goods labeled for outdoor use that are either Solution-dyed Acrylic or Solution-dyed Olefin fabrics if you want something more durable that you won’t have to worry about bringing indoors during those long summer days. These materials will last longer than polyester-based high-quality fabrics and will be able to tolerate lengthy periods of direct summer sunlight.

Materials for durability range from medium to very heavyweight canvas or jacquard-style fabrics. These high-quality fabrics obtain their color from solution dyed fibers before they are spun into fabric, substantially preventing any fading from UV radiation, despite their limited print options. Awnings, umbrellas, and covers made of this material are popular in the outdoors. These fabrics are also more resistant to abrasion, which makes them ideal for outdoor upholstery, cushions, and pillows. Although these high-quality fabrics are designed to withstand the environment, they should still be stored when not in use to make your project last longer.

Combining two of these fabric kinds is a popular method. Use acrylic textiles for your solids, which will endure considerably longer, and polyester fabrics to give your outdoor space a personal touch.

PVC Mesh 

Let’s move on to more durable outdoor high-quality fabrics. Look for textiles labeled PVC Mesh if you’re working on a project like poolside or patio furniture. Sling-style outdoor furniture, such as pool chairs and patio chairs with a plastic-like basket weave appearance, often uses PVC Mesh fabric. They are water resistant, dry rapidly, and most are fade resistant. Because PVC mesh does not stretch, it does not need to be cushioned below for support; it may simply be fastened to a metal or wood frame.

Marine Vinyl

Marine vinyl is an ideal alternative for heavy-duty upholstery, such as boat or automobile upholstery. Marine vinyl is the most durable of the outdoor textiles we’ll look at today. It’s been treated for water, stain, and UV protection, and it also has a high abrasion resistance.

Marine vinyl has a leather-like appearance and can be used for boat or automobile upholstery, but it can also be utilized for high-traffic upholstery in the home or business. As needed, these textiles may simply be wiped clean.

Is it Long-Lasting?

You’ll want a fabric with a higher rub count if your upholstery will be subjected to a lot of abrasion from family and outdoor activities. Rub count is a measurement of how much abrasion a weave can withstand before it starts to wear. The rub count is less necessary for decorative purposes, such as outdoor drapes used to create more distinct outdoor zones.

Something more to bear in mind?

Make sure you understand the difference between outdoor and performance fabrics—for outdoor furniture and textiles, especially those that will be exposed to the elements, you should choose a true outdoor fabric rather than a performance choice. However, “performance” is an industry term that refers to a material’s ability to withstand high-traffic areas by being washable and stain-resistant—ideal for items that will get a lot of use or even become dirty, but not necessarily the best choice for an outdoor sofa.

Is it going to fade?

Examine the textile’s colorfastness, which is a measurement of how much sun it can withstand before becoming faded. Solution-dyed high-quality fabrics, in which the color is embedded in the yarn fibers, will, on average, withstand the sun better than fabrics that are simply printed with color after weaving.

Is it a good fit for me?

When choosing an outdoor fabric, the most important thing to remember is to read the label to see if it can withstand your environment and lifestyle. Is it required to be chlorine-resistant, waterproof, or simply water-resistant and quick-drying? If you’re unclear, phone the company for clarification.

We hope that this guide to outdoor fabrics will assist you in finding the perfect cloth for your needs. On Yorkshire, you may browse all outdoor textiles by clicking here.

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