Monday, October 6, 2008

Guide To Leather Types

Leather Sofa World not only provides high quality leather sofas and furniture for remarkably low prices, we also like to keep our customers happy with researching in to commonly asked questions to try to give a better understanding of issues that we deal with on a regular basis. Many customers question what different types of leather there are as descriptions nowadays contain all sorts of names for the material that has been used to make the product. The following are the main types of leather that you would usually find sofas being described as and we will explain a little more about them as we go along:

Top Grain Leather: This is the outer most layer of the hide, considered to be the best cut and of a much higher quality to split leather due to its higher resistance to damage.

Split Leather: This is leather is made from the lower layers of the hide that lie close to the flesh of the beast. It is split away from the upper layers and is generally more fragile in that it is not as durable as the higher quality grains and can be prone to splitting with continuous wear.

Aniline Leather: This is leather that is coloured all the way through with a transparent dye, only the best hides can be used for this as the transparent dye allows for the beasts natural scarring/markings to show through.

Semi-Aniline Leather: This is Aniline Leather to which a protective coating is added leaving more of an even colour and ensuring that the leather is at less risk from damage and staining.
Corrected Grain Leather: This is leather that has been buffed to remove imperfections which is then covered with a pigment and finish that provides a uniform man made grain to ensure that the same pattern is shown throughout the product.  

Bycast Leather: Made using either Top Grain or Split Leather it is ironed out very smooth to remove a lot of natural graining and then coated heavily with a protective seal that enables easy cleaning and protects the surface from damage.

Bonded Leather: This is an artificial product that is made from around 80%+ real leather fibers (often derived from workshop scraps). The fibers are mixed with latex binders and finished with a man made ‘grain effect’ look. This type of leather is much cheaper than most of the other types of leather and a quality example can be hard to distinguish from real leather.

Faux Leather: This is not made from leather at all. It is made from PVC and is designed to look like leather but is very inexpensive and can often be recognisably different from leather. It is easy to clean and varies in quality.

So, we hope that this introduction in to the different types of leather may have been of use to you whilst deciding what type of leather sofa is suitable for you. For more tips please sign up for our blog to be sent to you directly to keep up to date with new products, Leather Sofa World news and articles in relation to leather sofas, furniture, design and research that we have carried out.

More detailed information about leather is available from the BLC Leather Technology Centre


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