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June 28, 2022

Picking the Perfect Fabric for Your Outdoor Oasis

This is an image of Sunbrella Outdoor Fabric. Fabrics shown are Zion in Bluestone, Westwood in Bronze and Chimera in Meteorite.

Whether it is your favorite beach vacation spot with family, a patio at your favorite restaurant with friends, or the hotel pool, the warm summer weather entices people to spend more time outdoors. More than 90% of those with outdoor spaces are taking greater advantage of outside areas.  All-weather textiles have never been softer, stronger, or more stylish which entice people to embrace the great outdoors.

Outdoor living spaces are the new living room. With various improvements, outdoor fabrics can stand up to the elements while still being porous enough to maintain some flexibility. Not to mention many of these fabrics also work for indoor use as well due to their inherent nature to hold up to high-traffic areas like waiting rooms, lobbies, and collaborative spaces.

What to consider when picking an outdoor fabric.

Artful arrangement of the Fabric Flux in Sand.

Flux in Sand


Having outdoor furniture with easy to clean fabrics is a must. And if the fabric is bleach cleanable while not compromising the integrity of the fabric, even better! This makes it easier to meet the hygienic needs, and requirements of busy environments, such as healthcare and hospitality. Consider a Sunbrella Contract fabric that is designed with complete fabric performance at its core.

Suggested outdoor fabric: Flux in Sand


Fabric Zion in Bluestone is a square and triangle pattern in Cream, Blues and Beiges.

Zion in Bluestone

Solution Dyed Acrylic Fabric

Color stability with performance fabrics is made possible by solution-dyed acrylic. Fabric fibers are saturated with color and UV-stabilized pigments before they’re spun into yarn. This means the pigment goes all the way through the fibers and not just the surface. This allows the color to stay true over time. This unique process makes outdoor fabrics inherently fade resistant, UV protective, and durable through cleaning, wear, or exposure to outdoor elements.

Suggested outdoor fabric: Zion in Bluestone


Westwood in Bronze is a good outdoor fabric

Westwood in Bronze


With high-traffic areas, especially those found in hospitality, healthcare, education, and workplace settings, it is essential to have furniture with fabrics that are durable, as well as contribute to the goal of a healthier environment. This includes mold and mildew resistance, stain and water resistance, abrasion tested, and designed to stand all the tests of time. Look for outdoor fabrics that have ACT Voluntary Performance Guidelines for use in high-traffic public spaces, including High Abrasion (30,000 + double rubs Wyzenbeek method), Flammability, Wet Dry Crocking, Colorfastness to Light and Physical Properties, such as Pilling 3+, Breaking Strength, and Seam Slippage.

Suggested outdoor fabric: Westwood in Bronze


This fabric is mostly dark blue. Chimera in Meteorite is a safer more sustainable alternative.

Chimera in Meteorite


Designing comfortable outdoor spaces, or high-traffic spaces, that have a positive impact on both the guests’ and the planet’s environment is also a win-win when choosing outdoor fabrics. Sunbrella Assure fabrics does just that. Its proprietary formula combats the absorption of water-based spills and messes from the start without the use of fluorochemicals, offering a safer more sustainable alternative. Sunbrella Assure can give designers peace of mind that they are contributing towards a healthy and sustainable space for places, indoors and out.

Suggested outdoor fabric: Chimera in Meteorite

Ready to get out(doors)?

Looking to pick a fabric that is right for your outdoor space? Contact us to talk to one of our fabric design experts. Visit our fabric gallery for additional fabrics suitable for your outdoor needs.