What You Need To Know About Upholstery Fabric

So many times when people go out to purchase upholstered furniture, they lean on the sales person to direct them as to what will be best for them. Lapjesmarkt Hoofddorp There are as many different fabrics as there are reasons to buy them. Some consumers know what they need. However, the vast majority of us don’t realize how different fabrics will re-act in your particular. For some people, a natural fiber, cotton, would work well for them. For others they need a synthetic fabric that will take more abuse and heavy usage, while still being easy to maintain on a daily basis. Consumer knowledge of fibers will help them select the right fabric for their environment.

There are 3 primary groups of fabrics, synthetic, natural, and blended. I will explain which fiber goes where in these 3 groups and why they will be better for you.

The first group is synthetic fabrics in order of easiest to hardest to maintain is as follows:

Olefin and nylon both easily releases soils, are highly stain resistant, and steam cleans with excellent results. Stain repellent treatments are not necessary.

Polyester and acrylic fabrics release soils quite well, not as well as nylon or olefin, and are moderately stain resistant with the right stain repellent treatment. Most can be steam cleaned. Depending on the overall condition of the polyester, a milder, less aggressive cleaning method (shampoo) would be required. Acrylic fabrics are always best cleaned using a solvent dry cleaning or shampoo process. Acrylic fabrics should never be steam cleaned. Polyester fabrics will clean better than acrylics.

The second group of fabrics is natural fabrics. Natural fabrics should always have a stain repellent treatment applied each time they are cleaned. They are listed in order of easiest to hardest to maintain:

Cottons are fair to good in their ability to release soils and their stain resistance is fair. Cotton can sometimes be steam cleaned, but are best dry-cleaned or cleaned by dry foam. The cleaning results are sometimes less than you would like.

Acetate, rayon, linen and silk all have poor soil release qualities and virtually no stain resistant qualities. All four should only be dry-cleaned and never steam cleaned. The cleaning results, if heavily soiled, are only poor to fair.

The third group of fabrics are blended fabrics, which are exactly what the name implies. They are blends of fibers to create a fabric. Blended fabrics are treated very much as the two above groups. If they are two natural fibers blended together, their characteristics are the same as any natural fiber. The same goes if two synthetic fibers are blended. Problems can arise when people treat all blends the same.

When looking for a fabric, blended fabrics can be fine. The best blend to look for is one that is at least 80% olefin with whatever else. Most fabrics of this blend are highly easy to maintain and can usually be steam cleaned for optimum finished results. Olefin had a hidden added benefit. By the chemical make-up of olefin, it is stain resistant in itself and no additional stain repellent treatment is usually required. This saves you money and increases the ease of maintenance you will have.

Natural fabrics should be cleaned more often than synthetic fabrics. This is due to the fact that most natural fabrics can only tolerate a maintenance cleaning. Synthetic fabrics can, in most cases depending on overall condition, successfully be cleaned with deeper and more aggressive methods. Overall, any upholstery fabric should be professionally cleaned yearly to remove deep damaging soils as well as unhealthy allergens. The cleaning frequency also depends on where the furniture is placed and the amount of usage it receives.

One last comment, any fabric, no matter what the content, can only be cleaned as far as the fiber allows. Go further and permanent damage can occur. Understanding the abilities of the fabric you choose to perform in your home, will determine how happy you will be with your selection.

My name is Bruce Jackson. I am the author of the book, Consumers Guide of Upholstery Fabric Selection & Care. I wrote this book to help all you get the knowledge you need to make the right fabric choice for your use. I have been in the fabric care industry for over 35 years and have seen first hand the disappointment of consumers when the furniture they bought is not practical in their environment. This book is exciting to me because it is the only one of its kind on the market today.

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