Choosing the right upholstery for your office furniture may seem like an intimidating task. Despite this it is important that you select the correct material as this will help determine your furniture’s lifespan.

Things to consider if favouring fabric

Many people favour fabric upholstery for many reasons. It can be very inviting, can be comfortable to use whatever the temperature is and can be easy to maintain. Before choosing and purchasing your upholstery, here are some things that you need to consider:

1. Location of the furniture
Knowing the location of the furniture will help you know how often the furniture is going to be used. This can help you estimate the durability of your upholstery. If your office furniture won’t get used often you may opt to use sensitive fabrics such as linen. However if the furniture is to be located in a high traffic reception area, you may choose fabrics that can withstand the daily wear and tear. Remember the tighter the weave, the more durable the fabric.

2. Exposure to sunlight
Over time fabrics will fade and exposure to sunlight can hasten this process. To save your upholstered furniture you may choose to move it away from windows or choose a fabric that will hide the fading. Additionally you should avoid placing your upholstered furniture next to a heat source.

3. Use colours to convey your mood
When choosing the right fabric for your upholstery you must also consider the colour that you’ll be choosing. Colours help convey mood and personality. Bright colours such as yellow, green and orange will add a cheery vibe to your office while warm colours will provide a relaxing environment.

4. Patterns
Patterns help hide stains and wear better than plain fabric. However you need to check if the pattern you’ll be choosing will work with your décor. Some patterns may not be suitable for your existing office style so carefully consider your choice.

Martindale Rating

In any upholstery job it is important that you check the strength of the fabric that you’ll be using. To do this you must know how it rates on the Martindale Rating. This test is done by doing a figure of eight motion on the fabric that symbolises the wear and tear that happens on the furniture.

We’d recommend a Martindale Rating of at least 25,000 for GD, General Domestic use. For commercial grade fabrics, we would recommend at least 40,000+ to ensure its suitability for high use areas.

Other upholstery options

Aside from fabrics you may also consider using vinyl or leather in your upholstery options. Here are the advantages of each:

Vinyl seating is a cost-effective option. Its look and texture is similar to that of leather but with less maintenance. You can even use vinyl if you’ll be putting the upholstered furniture in a location that needs sanitation such as clinics. There is a healthcare vinyl that can be used. This vinyl is resistant to sulphide, urine, moisture and bacteria. Additionally, vinyl rates high on the Martindale test.

Leather furniture is comfortable, timeless and classy. However when you consider using leather for your upholstery job check if it will match your décor. Another great benefit of using leather is that it lasts longer than ordinary fabric and gets more beautiful over time. If using leather just make sure that it is away from the sun.

In case you choose one of these alternatives, remember that each of them has their own cleaning process. Do your research or ask the experts so that they can help you maintain the beauty and quality of your upholstered office furniture.

Thinking of having your office furniture reupholstered? We can help! South West Upholstery work with many office businesses, from a few desks to large national call centres, providing our reupholstery services for office seating and desk divider screens across the UK. Whether you have 10 office chairs or 10,000 we can assist you quickly to complete your project with as little downtime to your business as possible. Take time to browse around our website to see the products and services that we offer as well as our customer’s feedback. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact us at 01173702745 or send us a message on sales@swupholstery.co.uk.