An Overview Guide to Leather Types
If you are unsure about which type of upholstery you should choose for your designer chair we prepared this guide to get you started. You can read about the pros and cons of different types of leather as well as about the tips on how to care for your designer furniture so it will last for as many years as possible. Leather has an extremely long durability if properly cared for. In addition, if you’re not comfortable with the feel of the leather furniture or don’t have the time to take care for it, we’ll also provide you with some basic info about cashmere upholstery.
At 122 Design you can get furniture upholstered in semi-aniline leather. This type has got an outer layer of colour and a surface finish, compared to what is called top-coated leather. The treatment of semi-aniline leather makes it more resistant and easier to maintain.
The inner treatment or the basic treatment closes the porous surface, while the outer treatment adds colour. This gives the leather a natural two-toned look. The surface of the leather is given a protective layer. Semi-aniline leather is comfortable to sit on and the uniform surface shows only a few markings from the leather’s natural folds.
This type of leather is very similar to the typical upholstery used in car seats.
Cleaning: If you are unlucky to spill something, wipe it off immediately and clean the surface with a leather cleaner or lukewarm soapy water (always use mild soap). Wipe the excess soap with clean water and avoid using oils, solvents or saddle soap to avoid damage and discolouration.
Pros: 100% leather which is comfortable to sit on and soft to the touch. Relatively resistant to fading and stains.
Our premium leather is aniline leather type which differs from the semi-aniline one by having a more natural surface and more prominent texture. The best hides are selected and processed in a single tanning and dyeing process during which they are infused with transparent, environment-friendly and water-soluble dyes. Finally, the light coating makes the leather more resilient and provides a protective cover against dirt or dust.
Premium leather’s biggest advantage is that it “breathes” which is essential for even greater comfort, and the surface retains its natural look with the visible pores and scars of the original skin structure.
Cleaning: Aniline leather is very susceptible to liquid, so if you spill something, you need to wipe it off immediately with a dry cloth – but avoid rubbing the liquid into the leather. Most stains naturally and gradually disappear over time. Do not attempt to clean premium leather with water. If very necessary, you can alternatively clean it with a leather cleaner.
Pros: 100% leather which has an exclusive and comfortable feel
Cons: Premium leather is less stain-resistant and also more prone to sun fading than the more strongly coated classic leather.
However, many people see it is a stylish charm that their premium leather furniture gradually changes its appearance over the years and gets more character as it gracefully ages.
Leather Chairs with Piping
What is piping? Piping is a sewing technique for seams in the leather upholstery. It is the most common technique and also provides the most beautiful finish. The upholsterer folds a leather strip so that it forms a pipe and inserts it into the seam, so the stitching is discretely hidden under a small fine edge. The alternative is a more flat stitching, where the two pieces of leather simply meet each other.
If you want a chair, for example, the Egg or the Swan which is as similar to the original as possible, we recommend that you choose the one with piping.
If you’re not keen on leather furniture, then cashmere upholstery is an obvious choice.
Cashmere is soft to touch and it provides a nice, luxurious look. Cashmere is made from the fine inner layer of wool on a cashmere goat. This species of goat is very rare and lives only in few are of the world, making cashmere a very expensive material.
The name “cashmere” dates from the 1700s and early 1800s when the Kashmir region of India was a major manufacturer of handmade shawls made from this material, imported from Tibet and Tartary. Cashmere has many qualities which are the reasons behind its great popularity. As you probably know from soft knitted sweater, mittens and the like, cashmere is extremely soft to touch, but also strong and light. Very resistant to dirt and stain-resistant, this material is also an acoustic insulator and never creates static charges. While wool is usually associated with keeping us warm in the winter, cashmere wool, when processed and used correctly, can also have a cooling effect, being warm in the winter and cool in the summer.
In order to use cashmere in the best possible way in the furniture industry, we combine it with other materials such as regular wool and merino wool. This process does not change the qualities described above, but simply makes the material more durable and ensures that it can be washed.
122 Design recommends chairs and sofas with cashmere upholstery for those who do not like leather much. Perhaps you like cosiness more than the slightly cooler and stylish look of leather and have a greater appreciation for soft surfaces. In addition, cashmere often is a cheaper option than leather, especially premium leather.