The main features of leather, which attract a consumer, are glossiness of surface, softness and durability. These features are based on quality and way of its currying, basis of which is chrome tanning, that is working skin with different vegetable, mineral and artificial substances. According to way of working skin, they have got special "technological" names, for example, morocco (thin goat leather or sheepskin worked with help of chrome tanning substances of vegetable origin), chrome (worked with chrome alum).
Because of frequent and big temperature changes and humidity in a building real leather can lose its elasticity and polish.
Hog leather is less aesthetic of all kinds of leather, used for upholstery of furniture and other elements of interior: its surface is a bit uneven, "pimpled" and not very shiny, and it is not so elastic as other kinds of leather.
Upholstery of furniture with morocco and thin chrome leather is more elegant, elastic; if upholstery is soft, when there are some creases on surface of upholstery, then it reminds of some kinds of textile. But in exploitation soft silky morocco leather is rather capricious, not like hog leather and cowhide: they become glossy more and easily get dirty, they do not stay beautiful long, easily get torn if not used carefully.
Imitation leather used for upholstery of furniture and elements of interior is made by covering woven fabric and unwoven fabric with film-forming polymers of rubber, latex and polyvinylchloride resin. Some kinds of imitation leather are very similar to real leather, and they are even more soft and elastic than real leather. They are more stable to rubbing and humidity, but less hole proof and sanitary than real leather.
Real and imitation leather is used in a house mainly for upholstery of furniture, doors and small parts of walls. In comparison with textile leather makes things look more ponderous and colder, but at same time more elegant.
There are some common recommendations on household exploitation of real and imitation leather, and they are as follows:
- Furniture upholstered with leather (especially imitation leather) should be exploited in dry and rather warm (not too warm) rooms.
- It should not be intensively affected by warmth and sunlight. First of all it can course premature aging of material, secondly, leather becomes too hot and it is not very pleasant and sanitary if you sit on it.
- It is not recommended to use furniture, upholstered with imitation leather, as bedding especially for children.
- All kinds of leather are always a good match with wood, metal and especially with textile. Leather incuts in textile cover of furniture or in decorative things made from textile look very harmonic, and if we speak about furniture, they are very functional.
Nevertheless it makes sense to bare in mind that leather is not a very warm and cozy material when we percept it from distance (visually) and when we touch it.
Leather furniture gives room an element of businesslike and official character. Our perception of leather in house, more than perception of other materials, depends on where it is placed. It is one thing when we speak about leather furniture, and another when we speak about walls or doors upholstered with leather.
Leather furniture is cozy and warm, as well doors and walls upholstered with leather. It is connected with our psychophysical codes of memory of feelings: we know that by touch leather is colder than textile, and furniture is mainly upholstered with textile, but it is warmer than wallpaper or some other upholstery.
Constructions like walls, doors and dividing walls, upholstered with leather bring into room atmosphere of warmth and protection; same as with wood it is pleasant to touch them and to lean to them. Leather upholstery makes walls seam closer and furniture look massive.
To sum everything up, it can be said that real and imitation leather in a modern house has obvious stylistic peculiarities.