"...The natural beauty of leather:
Leather has natural wrinkles, marks, and scars.
Variations in color and texture are genuine and natural features of leather.
We appreciate your understanding of this when ordering..."
Facts About Aniline Leather & Quality Leather Grain
Only the finest hides in the world fall into this category. Lovers of truly natural products are particularly fond of these leathers. Over time this type of leather develops a "patina", which is a deep honey or amber color formed naturally on a surface over time. As you can imagine, this effect can only add to the value of your furniture creating an even more spectacular focal point to any room. Only Grade "A" hides meet this criteria totaling a mere 5% of the world's entire hide supply.
Full Aniline Leather
Some of the finest hides in the world fall in this category. The only difference between Aniline and Full Aniline is that Full Aniline has slightly less stringent qualifying criteria for their hides. Full Aniline has a slightly protective finish (usually micropigments) applied via a roller or added into the tannage to give the leather some serviceability.
These leathers are a bit more processed, first by dying the aniline in large drums (just like the finer leathers as listed above), but these leathers are then also finished on top. Spray pigments are applied to the tops of the hides to even out the finish and to camouflage natural occurring imperfections. These leathers are light-resistant and scratch-resistant and are very easy to clean. The next 10-15% of the world's hide supply fall into this Grade "B" category.
Quality Leather Grain
Every piece of leather has a texture all its own, as unique as a fingerprint. Just as the grain and markings in wood reveal the nature of the tree from which it came, leather should display the markings and grain characteristics of the animal from which it was taken. These markings are natural and demonstrate the authenticity of genuine leather. During the tanning process, the outermost layer of the cowhide is separated from the rest. This is what's called “top grain”.
Sometimes this top layer is scarred or damaged by insect bites, branding, or barbed wire. These serious imperfections can require the entire surface to be sanded down and pressed with an imitation grain. This has several negative repercussions, as it alters the natural surface and also closes the pores, disallowing the leather to breathe. Additionally, the new pattern is much more uniform and unnatural, and rough to the touch. With the heavy pigmentation and chemical process often applied, they can become stiff and board-like, to the point of looking and feeling like plastic.
During the tanning process, the choicest top grains with few imperfections are selected for high-grade leather products. Very little processing is required, and these leathers remain in their most natural state. They are soft, supple, and clear to the touch and feel. These are called “full top grain” leathers.
At Town & Country Leather, we have partnered with brands like Natuzzi and Palliser, who share our passion for the most natural full top grain leather upholstery. Don't be fooled by the term “top grain”; not just any will do. You should be able to see the grain variations and fat wrinkles. It should look natural and feel soft to the touch.
As a premium full top grain leather ages, it becomes softer and distressed, which adds to the beauty of its style.
Tips on Caring for Your Leather
1. Protected (Pigmented) and Semi-aniline Leathers – Clean with a mild soap and water solution. Use a mild soap with a
neutral pH. Rinse with a clean, damp cloth to remove any soap residue.
Do not use a soap product that is harsh on your skin, as it will be
harsh on the leather. Always test the soap solution in an unseen area on
the sofa to ensure that the solution does not damage the leather (no
leather color transfer on to your cloth).
2. Natural (Aniline) Leathers – Clean with only a slightly damp cloth. Do not use any type of soap on natural (aniline) leather.
Tips on Buying the Perfect Leather Furniture - Things You Can Do to Make the Best Choice
Know What You Like
Measure your existing furniture so that you know the seat depth and seat height. Most furniture is made for people 5'6" to 6'1". If you are taller and want a more relaxed style of seating, look for oversize furniture. If you are shorter than 5'6" and you want your feet to touch the ground, then measuring seat height and depth are very important to being comfortable. Measure carefully to determine what size furniture you need. Determine whether you like firm supportive seating or a more casual soft and relaxed feeling. It may help to look around at some leather furniture in your area so that you know what it feels like and looks like. Measure the seat depth and height if you find a piece that you think is really comfortable. Once you have determined the range of dimensions you like, compare them with the furniture you are considering purchasing.
Know What You're Getting
Leather has natural wrinkles, marks and scars. Variations in color and texture are genuine and natural features of leather. We appreciate your understanding of this when ordering. High quality leather furniture usually has smaller pieces on the back and under the arms to fully utilize the hides.
Leather is very different from fabric as there are variations in the coloring of a good quality leather hide. Some manufacturers use vinyl on the back to save money. We don't usually do that.
If the description on the website doesn't tell you what you need to know email the owner, Eric Salem, and let him know what additional information you desire and he'll send it right away.
We will be happy to send close up pictures and leather swatches if you want to see the detail better and if your furniture will float in the room, ask to see a picture of the back view as well. Learn about springs and construction methods so that you insure that you are buying good quality construction. Be certain that you know whether the back and seat cushions are sewn in place or whether they are detachable. Ask Eric, Tom or Robert about zippers on cushions and pillows.
Will It Fit?
Carefully measure your room to insure that the furniture will fit in the room in a complementary layout. Also measure access to the room, to insure that the furniture can be moved through the doorway, elevator or stairwell. If the description says that the furniture is oversize compare the dimensions carefully to what you currently have to insure that the set won't be too large for your room. Many of the new designs are much deeper than older furniture. If you are purchasing a recliner, ask for the clearance to fully recline it and measure your space for placement to fully recline the chair.Will the Colors Match Your Room?
Always request a swatch before placing your order so that you can see the leather color and texture in the light of your own home and also see it next to your draperies and your flooring.
It is important to note that leather does not come in dye lots. The swatch you will receive is a close approximation of the color. The coloring of leather varies throughout the hide, and the grain and shading is different across the hide because natural leather comes from a natural resource.
Advantages of Leather Furniture
Variety: Leather furniture is an incredibly versatile choice. Whether your style is relaxed, contemporary, classic or somewhere in between, there is a product to fit your taste.
Ease and Prestige: Leather living room furniture is an excellent lifestyle choice. It exudes an immediate sense of prestige and good taste, yet is easy to clean and service over time.
Strength: Highly resistant to fire, scratching and tearing, leather furniture is a low maintenance solution. It’s strong enough to maintain its shape and resist wear, even with everyday and extended use.
Comfort: Flexible, breathable and natural, nothing beats the comfort of leather furniture. It doesn’t stick to your skin, stays cool in summer and warm in winter.
Value: Investing in quality leather living room furniture is choosing lasting value. The timeless appeal of leather has spanned many generations, and will continue to be a highly regarded product for ages to come.
Leather Glossary coming soon!!!