The Type of Fabric used in Upholstery


  • Upholstery (noun) is soft padded material used to cover different kinds of furniture, like sofas and armchairs. Upholstery is also known as the practice of fitting padded coverings to furniture.

    The type of fabric used in upholstery is categorized into two:

    Man-made or Synthetic

    Natural fibers include wool and cotton, while manmade fabrics are acrylic, acetate, and polyester.

    Manmade / Synthetic Fabrics

    Manufactured or synthetic fabrics are made from natural fibers and chemicals (or completely manmade materials). More consumers prefer using synthetic fabrics because these are cheaper than natural fabrics. Aside from the cost, a lot of people use these materials because these can be made to look and feel like natural fabrics. These fabrics are more durable too, hence, these are often used on furniture normally placed in high-traffic areas. Another advantage of manmade fabrics is that they are wrinkle- and fade-resistant. Other examples include nylon and rayon.

    Plant Fabrics

    These are made from plants, which are broken down to create fabric strands. The most commonly used plant fibers are cotton, hemp, and linen. Cotton is the most widely used because it is softer to the touch and more “breathable” as it can absorb and release body sweat. Linen, on the other hand, is the most elegant material used in upholstery, but is 3 times stronger than cotton. Linen comes from the flax plant, which contains natural-forming wax, giving the fiber its smooth texture. Hemp is another elegant fiber that is almost similar in texture and appearance to linen.

    Animal Fabrics

    Like plant fabrics, animal fabrics are made from natural sources. A perfect example is silk, which came from the cocoon of the silkworm. Silk, is considered one of the oldest forms of fabrics that came from animal sources. In fact, silk was used by the Greek, Roman, and Chinese civilizations of ancient times. Silk can be customized since it is highly absorbent, so it can be dyed in different colors.

    Suede Fabrics

    Suede is the most durable upholstery fabric in Dubai and around the world. It is manufactured from animal hide. The most common animal source are cows, but horses and donkeys are viable sources too. Suede is the most versatile material, hence its popularity, because it can be used in any type of furniture and it is also soft to the touch. It also has a smooth and velvety texture.

    Upholstery is a great way to reinvent old furniture. It is also ideal for people who are looking for unique pieces of furniture.

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