Westwood Furniture
 
 
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FABRIC EDUCATION
One of the most important decisions a consumer can make during a furniture purchase is choosing an upholstery fabric type. Let our experienced staff provide guidance as you weigh the pros and cons of buying a fabric that is durable but also attractive and fits in with your lifestyle.

Fabric options fall into two main categories: Synthetic and Natural fibers, while many natural fibers offer a blend of both.


Natural Fibers

Cotton blends are the most versatile of the natural fibers and one of the more durable fabric types a family can choose. Cotton does not fade easily but is more susceptible to soiling or wrinkling. This tendency is lessened when blended with synthetic materials that make it longer-lasting. Stain repellant finishes are recommended to preserve cotton’s look. See Fabricoate-below.

Silk has strong fibers and a natural shine; however, it can be easily damaged by sunlight and will not withstand heavy usage, making it a poor choice for high-traffic areas. Stains can be easily removed from silk with a little lemon juice or vinegar.

Linen is a fabric is best suited for formal living rooms and adult areas because it soils and wrinkles easily. While it won't withstand heavy wear, linen does resist pilling and fading. This type of fabric must be professionally cleaned.


Synthetic Fibers
Man-made fabrics have been designed to meet your needs when it comes to durability, cleaning and maintenance care.

Microfiber is lightweight, highly absorbent and does not stain or wrinkle easily. Made from polyester, this fabric type is a good choice for pet owners since animal claws won’t easily catch in the fabric and create tears. Microfiber repels water, making it an attractive choice for families and the fabric can be cleaned with most solvent based cleaners, such as rubbing alcohol.

Nylon is one of the strongest fabrics available thanks to the fact that is it usually blended with other fibers. Nylon is very resilient; in a blend, it helps eliminate the crushing of napped fabrics such as velvet. It does tend to fade and pill. These fabrics can be cleaned easily with water-based cleaners.

Rayon is the oldest manufactured fiber, created from wood pulp and treated with chemicals. Recent advances have made high-quality rayon very practical for upholstery and supremely durable for families.

Vinyl is easy to care for and is less expensive than leather. This fabric type is the most practical choice for families with children or for higher trafficked areas of the home. Vinyl can be easily cleaned using Ivory soap and water. Maintenance is fairly easy as long as your vinyl furniture is kept dry after any spills and kept away from sunlight and harsh chemicals to avoid irreparable damage.

Fabricoate is a fabric stain repellant that we have used here at Westwood Furniture for over 50 years. It can be used on any fabric and your furniture is then guaranteed against all food and all beverage stains for a period of 10 years! It also is guaranteed against all human or pet fluid stains for the same 10 years. So if the two year old has a nose bleed or the puppy leaves a “present” on the cushion, it’s guaranteed to come clean! Call us for details.

 

Leather
With many different types of leathers available, education is very important! Leather is easy to clean and durable too if you
understand what you have and the best practices for each type.

Pigmented leather is the most durable and will withstand heavy use. Scratches, cuts and stains can be repaired easily. This type is the furthest from being natural leather and also the best for families that want leather that is easily maintained and cleaned. Effective cleaning for this leather type requires frequent dusting using a clean, damp towel.

Pure Aniline is the most natural-looking and the softest feeling leather type. This leather however, is the least-resistant to soiling and may not be the best choice for families with young children and pets. Aniline leather owners must also follow specific guidelines from the manufacturer for proper care.

Nubuck is aniline leather where the surface has been brushed to create a texture similar to velvet. Many people confuse this type with suede leather. The brushing actually breaks the surface and opens up the leather even more making it incredibly soft. Prolonged exposure to sunlight will cause these leathers to fade. This type of leather is a good choice for families who don’t mind a little extra maintenance to keep the allure of the leather.


What to Avoid

Bonded Leather is man-made leather and is more prone to tearing, wearing, and color/topcoat separation. Most are created by grinding leather scraps into a pulp and adhering it to the back of vinyl material. Most cannot be repaired and lack the luster of natural leathers. For someone looking for longevity and durability from their leather, man-made leathers should be avoided. In this case, the extra monetary investment for natural leathers and/or protected leathers is worth the upgrade.
Velvet stains are the hardest to get out and damage cannot be easily repaired with this fabric. Velvet gets crushed very easily and cleaning up any stains will likely cause permanent damage.

 


 

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