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Choosing the Right Upholstery Fabric

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Upholstery Fabrics 

Not all sofas are created equal. With the unlimited options available to the consumer, selecting and purchasing a new sofa can often turn an exciting and fun process into an overwhelming task. One of the first steps is to determine which upholstery fabric would suit your daily routine, budget, and personal style.

It is also important to take into consideration the nature of which the sofa will be used. For high-traffic areas, such as a family room, you will want to select a material that is long-wearing, durable and stain resistant. If you plan on furnishing a formal sitting area or a home without children or pets, you may want to contemplate a more delicate, elegant material.

Here is a run-down of five popular options. It's up to you to decide if they’re the right fit for your home:

Cotton/Cotton Blends

Described as the 'fabric of our lives,' cotton is a durable and fad- resistant material. One quality that attracts consumers to cotton and cotton blends is that it comes in an endless array of textures and colors. Another undeniable perk is that it comes in varying degrees of durability – depending on the types of fabrics it’s blended with. Even with the most durable of fabrics, it is important you understand proper care and maintenance to get the most life out of your sofa. 

If you’re seeking a long-lasting and hard-wearing option fit for busy families – consider selecting a piece upholstered in durable canvas. If wrinkling is your main concern, a polyester-cotton blend may suit your needs.

The downside of cotton is that it tends to stain and wrinkle easily. if you have little ones and are considering buying cotton-covered furniture, you may want to consider having the manufacturer pre-treat your sofa with stain repellent. It may cost a little more, but it will make certain that you enjoy your investment for years to come.


Many families the option for microfiber as a seemingly low-maintenance, cozy alternative to traditional furniture coverings. Liquid beads off of this stain resistant, man-made textile – given that you catch it early.

However, once a stain actually sets in, it can be a little more difficult to remove. Some Microfiber furniture owners have issues using traditional soap and water to remove spots, saying that it stains the couch further. If your sofa starting to look lackluster and dirty, try cleaning it using rubbing alcohol in a spray bottle with a wide spray and a white sponge – you’ll be pleased with the results.


If you have a family with children and pets, leather is a low-maintenance option. Leather has the distinction of being both attractive and practical – a rare occurrence. Believed to be the most resilient of options for upholstery, leather actually improves its look with age and wear.

Some households shy away from purchasing leather, as it is traditionally more expensive than the alternative. On the other hand, there are many benefits to leather such as, it can also last up to four-times longer than cloth-covered furniture, which makes it a more sound and lasting investment.


An inexpensive alternative to leather, vinyl fits right in with homes with busy families. Vinyl can be made to resemble leather and has the same level of stain resistance; however, it will not last as long.

Unlike leather, which is a natural material, synthetic vinyl tends to get brittle and crack with age. To keep your vinyl furniture looking sleek and attractive, condition your sofa using a product formulated for use specifically on vinyl.


Silk is a natural and luxurious fabric that is pleasing to the eye and the skin. If you've got pets or children, it's probably not your safest bet. Also, one should take into consideration that once it is soiled, silk furniture must be professionally cleaned, which can get fairly expensive.

Once you’ve made an informed decision regarding fabric upholstery, that big hunt for your perfect sofa will be easier than you thought. Selecting the right material can guarantee that you’ll enjoy your investment for many years to come.

Lacey Grey Fabric loveseat Pallucci Furniture | 32 E Broadway Vancouver, BC | V5T 0B6 | Phone: (604) 568-4855 | Google+

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