Leather furniture remains a classic and buying it for your home is a significant decision. With enough planning and careful consideration, it is easy enough to find a piece that suits your lifestyle and general interior design. Some common questions you may need to ask yourself are: will it withstand pets or kids? Which room will it look best in? How easy is leather to maintain and clean?
In addition to these common questions, there are also some essential details you need to look into when buying leather furniture. For example, what is the difference between top-grain and full-grain leather? Here are tips to help you buy leather living room furniture such as a sofa or chair for your home.
Leather grading and its impact on the price
Grading leather depends on the size, frequency, and location of blemishes that naturally occur on animal hide. It is rare to find perfect hide, which is why when there are no natural marks or blemishes on the surface, it is also more expensive. When buying high-quality leather furniture, look for something made with top-grain leather. This type of leather is more durable than split-grain. You will also encounter different kinds of leather such as:
- Aniline. Aniline refers to the dye used to treat pure leather. Apart from this treatment, no other dyes are used, making aniline leather the best and softest kind.
- Semi-aniline. This kind of leather has an additional layer of pigment and protection. It is slightly less prone to stains and fading.
- Pigmented. This type of leather is the cheapest variety. Although not as soft as aniline, pigmented leather is more durable and resistant to scratches and stains.
Some people prefer pigmented leather because of the more uniform appearance. Nevertheless, if you are looking for a more authentic feel, aniline is still the top choice.
What is bonded leather?
Instead of using a single piece of hide, bonded leather is made of several pieces blended together. The resulting material is seamless and durable. Bonded leather still feels sleek and luxurious, and since it is more durable, it is typically used for furniture in high-traffic areas like dining rooms.
Leather and its distinct patina
Another unique characteristic of leather is the patina it develops over time. The patina of leather is something that appeals to many people, especially those who like vintage and classic designs. As leather ages, you will notice the texture changing, and the grains start to become more visible. This ‘aged’ appearance makes leather more endearing and luxurious. Only high-quality and pure leather will age well. Do not settle for a cheaper alternative when buying leather furniture.
Pay attention to details
Now that you know what to look for when buying leather furniture, the next step is to inspect every aspect of the piece. If you can, look underneath to check the closure. You may also want to look at the seams and other parts of the furniture. Ask about other materials used, such as the type of wood, and cushioning material. You may also want to check the label and find out who made the furniture and where it was manufactured.