As a natural fiber made from the jute plant, jute has many uses because it is tough and versatile. It doesn’t stretch like other fabrics and is relatively inexpensive. After cotton, it is the most important vegetable fiber known to man and has a wide variety of uses.
Yes, jute is good for a beach house, provided it’s been treated to be waterproof and fire-resistant. It gives an attractive, natural, casual look to a beach house. It is also low maintenance, inexpensive, non-toxic, and eco-friendly. Untreated jute is not that good because it absorbs too much water.
Jute has been used to make fabrics for more than five thousand years, so it has a lot going for it. Jute fibers are used in curtains, rugs, carpets, chair coverings, ropes, twine, and burlap or hessian sacking for transporting grain, vegetables, fruit, and other goods. In this article, we examine the properties of jute and whether it’s suitable for a beach house.
Properties That Make Jute Suitable For A Beach House
Provided that it’s used indoors where it isn’t exposed to water and sunlight, untreated jute can make a beautiful natural indoor area rug. It is comparatively maintenance-free, and the fibers are durable, soft, and elegant. Jute rugs are usually cleaned just by vacuuming and are non-toxic to pets and people.
Jute that’s been rendered fire resistant and waterproof can be used as upholstery for outdoor and indoor furniture, hanging baskets, and welcome mats. It has long fibers that can be woven in just about any pattern, and many beautiful jute products on the market would look good in a beach house.
Jute fibers are usually thicker than sisal or seagrass fibers, so jute mats offer a bit more cushioning from a hard floor. If your house is right on the beach, chances are you and your family will trek in significant amounts of beach sand. If a jute rug is loosely woven, the sand particles are easier to shake out and won’t work their way deep into the pile as they would a thick carpet.
Jute is twice as resilient as cotton, non-toxic, eco-friendly, and resistant to micro-organisms. It is suitable for a beach house because it dries quickly and is resistant to abrasions and stains. There are a couple of jute varieties, some light-brown and some off-white, so the colors are entirely natural and relatively neutral, blending well with the overall décor.
However, it can also be dyed and patterned in just about any color. It is a popular material for wall coverings, flooring, area rugs, carpeting, and furniture upholstery. Another advantage is that jute is one of the world’s least expensive textiles.
Jute upholstery is durable and robust and is used for chairs, sofas, and other furniture. It is easy to clean jute with just mild soap and water or a vacuum cleaner. Jute rugs tend to shed their fibers, so they work better on lighter-colored floors where they aren’t as noticeable.
Jute rugs are more allergy-friendly than those made with cotton or wool that can accumulate dust mites. They can be woven into gorgeous shapes and patterns that make them a laid-back, casual addition to a beach house floor. Jute baskets for magazines and umbrellas and jute poufs make fresh-looking and attractive accessories.
Jute is generally casual and low maintenance, which is just how beach house owners like it. Beach houses should ideally be bright, fresh, and airy, and the light coloring of natural jute contributes to this look.
There are two different types of jute, namely white jute, and dark jute. Good quality jute yarn is used for jute cloth, called burlap in the US and hessian in Europe. Lower grades of jute are used to make wrapping for bales and gunny sacks for potatoes, grains, vegetables, and other agricultural products.
Using jute rope in creative ways in a beach house can contribute a nautical feel to picture frames, wall clocks, and other decorative items.
Properties That Don’t Make Jute Good For A Beach House
Jute is highly hygroscopic, which means it readily absorbs moisture, leading to rot and mold. It can swell to around thirty-four percent of its volume by absorbing water vapor from the air. Levels of humidity in coastal areas can be very high compared to inland, meaning that untreated jute rugs and other items will absorb more water at the beach.
It is hard to tell from touching it that jute is wet. Even if it has a water content of thirty-four percent, it may not feel damp. Jute should therefore be protected from sea, fog, rain, and water condensation, so you shouldn’t use it outside your beach house, for example, on an open porch. Once rot and mold set in, jute can quickly decay to dust.
Jute readily absorbs oxygen, so large quantities of it should not be used in confined, poorly ventilated spaces in a beach house such as cupboards, small bathrooms, or cellars. If jute becomes wet, it loses its strength as it is biodegradable.
Like other natural fibers, raw jute catches fire quickly due to its high cellulose content, so it should be kept away from lit cigarettes, sparks, candles, stoves, and naked lights. Because it absorbs oxygen so well, it can be difficult to extinguish the blaze because fire loves oxygen. Weirdly, jute stored in large stacks is susceptible to spontaneous combustion due to microbial activity, even when moist.
It usually has to be extinguished with carbon dioxide instead of water. If you spill oils or fats onto it, this increases its self-healing capability, so it shouldn’t be used in the kitchen or areas where it may be exposed to these substances unless it has been treated to make it fire-resistant.
Fire hazards associated with jute seem to be related more to the storage in ships’ cargo holds of multiple burlap or hessian bags and containers than jute mats or area rugs. Jute can be made fire retardant through the use of various chemical substances, and scientists have been successfully working on various treatments for different jute fabrics since 1821.
Jute rugs or area mats cannot be steam cleaned, and chemical spot cleaners and rug cleaners will discolor or stain them. They will also fade when exposed to sunlight. Untreated jute should therefore not be used as a bathroom mat or outdoor welcome mat at a beach house.
Jute is a beautiful natural fiber that can contribute to a beach house’s light-hearted, laid-back vibe. Jute yarn can be woven into rugs, mats, baskets of all kinds, upholstery for furniture and rope, and is eco-friendly and durable. It should be used indoors only unless it has been waterproofed as it is highly absorbent in its natural state.