A touch of luxurious leather
By Wangeci Kanyeki | June 16th 2016
Quality leather furniture offer remarkable durability and years of comfort. This week we look at a few factors to consider if you decide to go for leather furniture.
Consider where you will keep the sofa. Will it be a quiet low impact environment or high impact areas such as homes where there are children, pets, office receptions or conference rooms and the sofa may be subjected to spills and high usage?
If the sofa will be put in high traffic areas, then select a heavier type of leather that is durable and easy to clean. Avoid putting the sofa under direct sunlight or next to the air conditioner or heater to prevent it from fading, drying or cracking.
Consider your budget. Leather prices may appear to be high but that is because of its durability. Make sure it is worth your investment by purchasing good quality furniture from a credible supplier. The sofa frame should be constructed with hard wood to serve you for many years without sagging.
Ask the supplier to give you maintenance tips so that you can keep the leather in tip-top condition. And because good quality leather can last a lifetime, you need to think through how it will fit in with the rest of your décor.
Take into consideration the colour of the leather sofa you are purchasing. A leather furniture consumer guide by Kevin Gillan says that leather upholstery can be either pure aniline or unfinished where the upholstery is coloured only with dye. The leather is supple and soft, giving a luxurious look and feel. However, this type of leather stains easily and can fade rapidly. Finished leather on the other hand is coloured using the same aniline dye but pigment coating is applied to it. It may not feel as soft and supple but it is stronger and sturdy, making it easier to clean and taking longer to fade.
Though there is a perception that leather is cold, it actually warms up to your body temperature. However, you can counter this by buying a sofa in a colour that provides psychological warmth such as reds and browns.
If you are going for a sofa in grey or black colour which appears colder, then add colourful or printed scatter cushions and warm throws. Light colours will require higher care and maintenance. Like wine, if kept well, leather improves with age. Invest in it and it will give you years of luxury, functionality and comfort.
Keep your leather furniture free of dust by wiping with a barely dump cloth. Blot spills quickly using a clean cloth or kitchen towels. Grease oils or biro marks can be removed using a bit of baking powder with water and rubbed gently with a scotch brite. Avoid using harsh detergents or dish-washing soap as they can cause the leather to become brittle, dry or damaged.
Find out from your furniture supplier the best maintenance practice for your leather sofa, which may include a recommended leather oil.
Leather oil is usually a blend of natural oils such as beeswax that hydrate and rejuvenate neglected, dried and faded leather. It extends the lifespan of the leather and preserves, waterproofs and restores dry leather fibre.
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