11/11/2010 13:25 GMT | Updated 22/05/2015 10:12 BST

How To Use Wicker In Winter

Wicker furniture is well-known for its use outdoors. Many assume that it's only acceptable indoors if you live somewhere tropical. But wicker wasn't developed by islanders - it was the Egyptians who created it. They used reeds and grasses that grew in abundance alongside the Nile River. The wicker craze then moved on to Italy, China and Africa.

It seems a bit wasteful to have a set of furniture that is used for only a few months, then stored away for the rest of the year. What if you could reuse some of your wicker pieces inside all year long?

indoor wicker winter wicker
Can you take wicker inside for the winter? Photo: Getty Images

What you can do with existing wicker furniture:

Paint it. A little spray paint goes a long way. Let's say you have white wicker chairs but you want to bring them inside to accent your living room sofa, which happens to be dark brown. White wicker might not be very complementary, but after a can or two of burnt sienna or rust spray paint, you've got yourself brand new set of chairs.

indoor wicker wicker before and after
Paint it and recover the old cushion. Photos: Boongoggle

Recover it. The greatest part of wicker is the removable, easy-to-cover cushions. Frequently, wicker comes with just one simple seat cushion - making for a very easy DIY project for anyone to do. You can change the cushion cover as the season changes by making removable cushion covers - with Velcro or zips. This way, you can remove the "winter" seat covers to expose your summery print. As you can see above, Audrey of Boongoggle got an old wicker piece second hand online, painted it and added a new cushion for a whole new look.

Use it piecemeal. An entire grouping of wicker furniture screams summer, but take one piece away and place it among wood, metal and glass furniture and it works. Whether a chair, table or sofa, placing one piece in an eclectic grouping will bring some fun texture and interest to a predicable space.

Choose darker colours. Wicker comes in many different colours - the lighter colours and whites being the most popular choices for patio furniture. However, if you plan on reusing your wicker indoors during the winter season, selecting a darker shade might make the seasonal transition indoors a bit easier. You don't have to go ultra-dark, but steer clear of whites and creams, which tend to bring to mind summer breezes.

Opt for clean lines. Victorian-style ornate wicker is still popular, but it's harder to match indoors with other styles. Selecting wicker that has sleek, simple lines and less detail might help it blend better with your existing furniture.