Which fabric to choose for furniture upholstery
Which upholstery fabric to choose? There is no universal advice. Hundreds of articles have been written on the topic of furniture fabrics but buyers still choose at their own discretion: according to convenience, color, texture. We will not collect all the materials and try to choose a sofa for a hundred years – we will simply tell you what we pay attention to when choosing fabric for furniture upholstery for our production. We are talking only about those materials that we have tested ourselves.
What is the upholstery of the sofa made of?
Modern furniture upholstery can look like fabric for sewing clothes. But it is only on the outside. Furniture textiles have a complex structure and can consist of several layers of materials with different qualities. As for natural fabric and synthetics, it is worth remembering one thing: the higher the percentage of natural threads in the composition, the lower the wear resistance of the fabric.
Sofa upholstery fabric withstands extreme loads every day, so it is being carefully tested by the manufacturer before they start selling it. According to the results of testing, each fabric from the assortment is assigned one or another category. The number of tests and testing methods differs from country to country. However, the most demonstrative are:
Wear resistance. It is usually carried out by the Martindale method – friction. The test results show how many friction cycles the fabric can withstand before its appearance changes noticeably. The indicator for upholstery fabric is more than 20,000 cycles.
Density – the number of fibers per segment. The higher the number, the stronger the fabric will be. A good indicator is more than 400 grams per square meter.
Color stability is the fabric’s ability not to fade under constant exposure to sunlight. Each manufacturer has its own scale but it is better to choose a fabric with the highest index. True, over time, all fabrics burn out under the influence of ultraviolet light. Especially fabrics with a high content of natural fibers.
Pilling tendency – resistance of the fabric to the formation of “pills”. Fabrics for furniture that have survived 500 or more cycles are considered non-pilling.
In order to simplify care and extend the service life of furniture fabric, textile production uses additional chemical treatment – coating or proofing. Proofing is considered a more reliable option since the protective film covers each fiber, not just the surface. There are fabrics with protection against water, dirt, grease, dust, tobacco smoke, colored markers, and bacteria. There is a furniture fabric that will not catch fire from a cigarette. The truth is that additional surface treatment will make life easier for the owners in terms of cleaning but only for a certain amount of time. Unfortunately, after two or three dry cleanings or long-term use of the product the surface treatment loses its magical power.
100% anti-vandal fabrics do not exist. There is sofa fabric with a dense weave, smooth or with a short pile. Flock is a kind of champion in terms of protection against home vandalism – the fabric is resistant to attacks of claws and teeth and is easy to clean (including fur). In fact, even this fabric will not save you if the animal tries hard.
We will not go into technical details anymore. We will give you a practical tip: if you want a fabric with the right properties, just tell us your desire and we will choose a beautiful and absolutely correct sample for you.
For a crowded office and a living room in a house, it is better to choose fabrics for furniture upholstery with different indicators of wear resistance. And for an apartment without pets, it makes no sense to choose an anti-vandal fabric. In order not to overpay for unnecessary improvements, you need to consider two things: the place of “residence” of the sofa and those who will interact with it:
- For the living room, it is better to choose fabric for a sofa with a high rate of wear resistance and high density.
- In children’s rooms, it is sometimes easier to reupholster the sofa or order a removable cover. It is better to choose hypoallergenic and breathable fabrics with special proofing against pollution.
- For a sofa in the kitchen, it is better to focus on moisture-proof and non-staining materials, resistant to stains and greasy substances. In addition, high pile and non-dense materials should be avoided. For additional protection, you can order covers and cushions and make sure that the upholstery fabric is machine washable.
- For upholstered furniture, which will be used as a sleeping place, a pleasant-to-the-touch fabric is better.
- For furniture upholstery of loggia or balcony, it is better to choose fabrics with increased resistance to moisture, dirt, and dust.
Favorite or fashionable sofa fabric – which is better?
Upholstery fashion is a rather nominal concept and in most cases depends on the preferences of a professional designer and his ability to work with ornaments. Yes, vibrant sofas and armchairs impress and look spectacular. However, you need to be able to work with complex shades, to be able to exist in them and to be able to take care of them – bright fabric for furniture upholstery is quite problematic in terms of care and cleaning.
We have good news for buyers without design education: manufacturers are increasingly popularizing the idea of discreet luxury and absolute comfort in everything related to interior design. So, fashion is fashion, but it is worth remembering: large furniture is bought not for one year, but for 10-15 years, no less. It is rather not a fashionable style that is chosen, but personal comfort for the next decade.
Fashion textiles speak not with spectacular colors but with the texture and quality of the fabric. Fabrics of basic shades are in trend today: graphite, light gray, ocher. If the color of the fabric is no longer pleasing to the eye, it can be replaced – upholstery of furniture can become the same decorating move that will radically change the style of the interior. In addition, the updated furniture fabric will help fit the sofa into the existing space when moving, for example. Or help to “befriend” furniture from different sets in the same room.
Now that you already know the main characteristics of furniture fabrics, it’s time to take the next step – contact us. We have selected the best for our customers.
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