Have you heard about Docril canvas? It's possible you have – Docril is the preferred choice for many blind and awnings manufacturers, outdoor upholsterers and furniture designers around the world.

Perhaps you are considering its use in an upholstery project and wonder what the hype is about. If so, read on and we'll tell you all about one of Australia's favourite fabrics for outdoor use – how it's made, its many benefits and more!

Docril Fabrics Australia: A quick history

It was the year 2000. Ricky Richards founder, Norman Gottlieb headed overseas to research new textiles for the marine and awning industry. There was a gap in the market Norm was keen to explore, and off he went to the German R&T trade show in February of that year to investigate further.

There, Norm chatted with the owner of Citel, an awning fabric manufacturer from Spain. Both from family-owned businesses, the two immediately hit it off. Before Norm returned to Australia, he purchased a small range of Docril fabric to target the marine market, which proved an immediate hit from the moment it arrived on Aussie shores.

Over the next few years, demand for Docril increased ten-fold, and its popularity soon spilt into other sectors. External blind and awning specialists wanted their slice (or metre length) of the Docril pie too! Fast forward to today, and the Docril fabric is highly sort after, available in a multitude of colours and styles, and is the Number 1 selling awning fabric.

How is Docril fabric made?

There is a reason why Docril is popular among outdoor upholsterers and awning designers – and it starts with its fibre.

Docril is made from solution-dyed acrylic, which is tightly woven to produce a material with a canvas-like appearance. A synthetic material, the acrylic used includes a polymer called acrylonitrile, making it robust, durable and perfect for use in outdoor applications. Moreover, because the woven fibres are pre-dyed, Docril keeps its colour regardless of the conditions.

But it doesn't stop there. Once off the weave, Docril fabric is coated in Teflon, a fluoropolymer lubricant with extreme resistance to chemicals and liquids. So, on top of being one of the strongest and colour-fast fabrics available, Docril also works effectively in adverse weather – heat and light rain. It's no wonder the marine, blinds and awning industries, along with furniture designers turn to Docril time and time again!

Key benefits of Docril acrylic fabric

You've seen why Docril fabric suits outdoor conditions. Certainly, any fabric that can handle diverse weather conditions has to be a good thing for external furnishings. But let's take a look at its all-around benefits as an awning fabric.

UV treated: You might say this is more of an essential than a benefit when it comes to awnings and furniture in Australia. Thankfully, you can sit beneath Docril awning fabric and feel confident you are protected from the sun, with solar heat gain reduced by up to 90%.

Water resistant: Beyond its use on boats and in marinas, Docril has a place in furniture and awnings installed in homes, restaurants, cafes, playgrounds, and indeed anywhere you want to protect what's important from UV and light rain.

Anti-corrosive: Nobody wants to install an awning or cover their outdoor furniture only to have it wear quickly. Docril lasts for years – what's more, it comes with a full 10-year UV warranty giving you confidence in the product's integrity and longevity.

Free from cracks: If your sole purpose for an awning is to heat or cool a room or provide sun and cover, it needs to stay in tip-top condition. Not only does cracked awning fabric look unsightly, but it also prevents the material from performing at its best. Docril is sure to prevent this unsightly look and ensure long-term performance.

Low maintenance: Any fabric you can wipe with a cloth makes it super easy to clean – and that's what you get with Docril fabric, thanks to its Teflon coating. You can even wash it down with a hose in a couple of minutes if you prefer this to a manual wipe-over.

Docril fabric

Where is Docril canvas used?

So far, there has been a lot of talk about awnings. And rightly so, with Docril currently the best-selling fabric in Australia when it comes to awnings. Yet this 100% solution-dyed acrylic can be used for so much more. These are the most popular uses for Docril in textiles projects today:

  • Shade awnings
  • Window awnings
  • Outdoor blinds
  • Large umbrella shades
  • Outdoor furniture
  • Marine fittings

What Docril fabric colours are available?

We already mentioned Docril comes in a range of colours. So many that it might be easier to ask, “What Docril fabric colours are not available?”

For a canvas fabric, one could easily be forgiven for assuming the colours are bland and limited, but not with Docril. Nor do their patterns stop at plain, either. It all depends on the look and feel you want for your outdoor environment.

The latest Docril patterns include blocks of colours, wide stripes, narrow stripes or a combination of the two. Vibrant tones ensure the fabric makes a statement, and warm natural tones blend into their surroundings better.

The Docril collection currently has 39 unique designs created to complement any domestic or commercial outdoor project. We recommend you take a look at their range for yourself – we're sure you'll be impressed!

Can Docril fabric help your next outdoor furnishing project?

At Ricky Richards, our team often uses a phrase with our outdoor upholstery clients: If it isn't Docril, it isn't the right fabric.

While said in jest, it's not too far from the truth either! Depending on your application, Docril acrylic fabric is often your best option based on its many benefits, styles and long-lasting colour.

It's always worth chatting with our specialist team about your upholstery project, thanks to their immense knowledge about the best types of fabrics for different jobs, not to mention ideas about colours and styles.

Call into Ricky Richards today or contact our team. We'd love to hear from you!