There are so many retailers advertising really low prices on leather furniture. Some pricing so low it just can’t be true? Here are a few tips for buying genuine leather furniture and understanding the difference: Not all leather furniture is created equal, just like all furniture is not made the same.
Genuine leather furniture is made of all top grain leather everywhere. This includes all seating areas as well as outside backs and sides of your new living room set. You will find this kind of high quality leather furniture from such respected American made leather furniture manufactures like Bradington Young, Leathercraft, McKinley, Classic Leather and leather furniture importer Palatial. These are all excellent furniture manufactures that sell genuine all leather furniture. These mentioned pride themselves on offering only all top grain leather for the manufacturing of their quality leather furniture designs.
Top Grain/Split: This is a type of leather furniture that has real top grain on the insides where your skin makes contact with the furniture and a split hide on the other areas. A split is still leather so it can be sold as an all leather piece, but in fact the split part of the hide is actually the second cut down from the top grain. This part of the leather hide is very hard and normally used for shoe soles or belts. The colors are usually the same but the hand or feel is very different. Also these two different types of leather wear different. If you are using your new leather furniture say as a room divider where the back is exposed over time you will notice the difference. There is a tremendous difference in the price per square foot on these two types of leather. So if you see a leather sofa with an exceptionally low price this could be why. Usually you will not find a leather sofa upholstered in all split leather because it is not soft and supple to the touch.
Top Grain/Vinyl: The Top grain leather is used on the inside seat and back while the vinyl is used on the outsides and outback. The cost will be reduced drastically by using the vinyl because it is a manmade material that is very inexpensive. Another word for vinyl is naugahyde you may be more familiar with that term. The leather producers have done a good job matching the vinyl to the leather but as your furniture is exposed to the sun direct or reflective and other factors within your home you will notice that these two products will age differently. This is an inexpensive way to introduce leather to your home but just realize this is not a long term investment in quality leather furniture.
Bonded Leather: Again, this is a less expensive way to say you have a leather couch. Bonded leather is actually only 17% real leather. Bonded leather is just leather scraps that are bonded together very much like particle board wood pressed together to create the look of leather. Bonded leather is not soft or supple and is not made to last. Softness can be achieved by tumbling the hides, but this is not always the case. This manmade material should not be sold as leather but often is. Another word for bonded leather is bi-cast leather.
Genuine Leather: The top grain, this is the very first cut from the hide. It is the most desirable and softest of all the layers used from a cow hide. Top grain leather for furniture upholstering will either come from a cow, calf or a water buffalo. All of the leather used for furniture is a byproduct of the meat industry. Genuine leather will least decades with very little care. Full grain leather is the best leather money can buy. Genuine leather can be finished in many different ways to fit into everyone’s lifestyle. Whether you are looking for a whole room full of leather furniture or just a leather accent chair, leather is an excellent choice in home furnishing. Additional information on tanning and leather finishes.