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What Should I Consider When Buying Leather Furniture?

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  • Written By: K T Solis
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 09 September 2016
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Buying leather furniture is a wise investment to make since leather is a durable material that suits both home and office décor. Leather is more expensive than traditional upholstery but can last a good deal longer. It even improves with age.

The best type of leather is full or top grain, which means it is also the most expensive of all leathers on the market. Since this particular type of leather has very few flaws, there is no need to process it. As a result, the leather is soft and smooth.

Natural dye, or aniline, is added to the leather in order to enhance its appearance. A less expensive leather is called corrected grain leather. This type of leather undergoes extensive treatments in order to improve its appearance. Corrected grain leather is not as soft or supple as a top grain leather

Leather is prepared in several ways. Aniline leather is placed inside a drum where it is dyed. The dye soaks through the leather so that it achieves a rich, vibrant color.

Semi-aniline leather is dyed inside a drum as well. Next, a coating is applied to it in order to protect it from stains or fading. Pigmented leather is not thoroughly dyed; it only receives surface color. This protects the leather from stains, scratches, and fading.

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Before deciding on a particular piece of leather furniture, it's important to determine if the furniture will fit the room's décor. Leather furniture can be purchased in a variety of colors, so consumers can usually find sofas and chairs that suit their needs. Another factor to consider is whether or not the furniture will receive heavy use.

If a leather couch or chair will be subjected to a good deal of wear and tear, it should possess a heavier type of finish. Be certain that any leather furniture purchased is 100 percent leather, as some furniture may only be a mixture of vinyl and leather. Vinyl is not nearly as durable as leather, so this type of furniture will not last as long as a piece of furniture that is entirely made of leather.

Once the leather furniture is purchased, the owner should take steps to keep it in good condition. For example, it's important to dust and vacuum the furniture, reaching into any crevices and hidden sections of the furniture as well. Every six to 12 months, use a leather conditioner to keep the material in excellent shape. To clean up spills, use a clean cloth or sponge to remove them.

At times it may be necessary to use a cloth and warm water to clean the furniture. If this is done, be sure not to soak the stain as it could damage the leather. Soap should also never be used on the furniture since it might cause stains. Never place leather furniture in direct sunlight, since too much light can ruin the material.

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