Types of Upholstery Fabric to Consider for Your Furniture


Investing in good upholstery fabric ensures quality and reliability. Whatever furniture you have at home, be it a chair or a sofa, it will end up getting used at some point. So why not put your money into good upholstery fabric and convert your basic furniture to furniture full of elegance and style. 

The fabric used in upholstery is a crucial part of deciding the final look and comfort of the upholstered furniture. The upholstery fabric industry has introduced newer and better quality fabrics for people to buy and is still evolving day by day.

Choosing the wrong fabric for your upholstery project could be disastrous. For example, a fabric with the wrong pattern and color to match your room could bring the whole look of the room down. Likewise, an easily stained fabric that is hard to clean could be very inconvenient to use for upholstering in a house with small kids. 

There are various options of upholstery fabric to choose from which are present in the market. Here’s a list of the types of upholstery fabrics to consider for your furniture. 



Leather is one of the most commonly used types of materials in the upholstery fabric industry. Leather gives off a luxurious and expensive feel to your household. Furniture crafted using leather as a cover are often quite comfortable and relaxing to sit on. The best part about leather upholstery is that leather does not absorb liquids, so if you spill a drink on your furniture, you can easily wipe it away with a tissue or cloth. Leather is also highly durable when compared to other types of fabrics used for upholstery. If you own pets or a smoker yourself, leather upholstered furniture is the way to go for you, as leather does not absorb smell at all and is very easy to clean.

It is essential to know that using leather in your upholstery project will be pretty expensive. Leather is also easily damaged by sharp objects as it is a relatively hard material and will tear when it comes in contact with anything sharp. 



Cotton is also one of the most commonly used fabrics in the upholstering industry. Cotton fabric is one hundred percent a natural fiber which makes it highly durable. Cotton is very soft to the touch, which means it is highly comfortable to sit on. The best thing about cotton fabric is that it can be dyed in any color at all. Therefore, finding cotton upholstery fabric in a specifically desired color is not a big issue. 

Do you have sensitive skin? Well, opting for cotton fabric upholstery might be your best call as cotton is hypoallergenic, making it optimal for people with sensitive skin. 

Now comes the interesting part, cotton is available in different grades (qualities). Different qualities mean different prices, and different prices mean you can buy the grade (quality) of cotton that falls under your budget. 

Cotton being easy to dye doesn’t always result in a good ending. Easy to dye means that even the smallest of spillages on your cotton furniture will be absorbed into it, causing it to smell over time. 



Silk is well known for its affiliation with luxury. Silk is one of the most expensive natural fibers globally and is a status symbol for royalty. If you have a formal décor in your house, getting silk fabric upholstery will significantly boost the home’s final look. Silk is known for being one of the if not the softest fabrics on the market. Just like cotton, you can find silk in many different colors available on the market. 

Silk is a very delicate fabric, thus not suitable for rough use or around pets. Silk requires a lot of care and needs to be dry-cleaned. It won’t come cheap as well. Getting silk fabric upholstery will blow a big hole in your budget. 



Polyester is a microfiber fabric used in the upholstery industry. You get a wide variety of colors in polyester fabric, from which you can choose best to fit the design and layout of your home. Polyester is widely known for being extremely durable as it is effortless to clean and lasts you a long, long time. Polyester fabric used in upholstery takes very little time to dry up, thus removing spillages from your worrying list. Stains and smelly furniture are also not a problem for polyester fabric as it is stain resistant and bad at absorbing smells. 

Polyester is a flammable material, making it a safety hazard if you smoke indoors. Due to polyester fabric being tensile, it tends to stretch out and loosen up over time. 


Rayon is relatively new to the upholstering industry and is a semi-synthetic fabric. Are you looking for the comfort of natural fibers? Well, the rayon fabric will do just that for you and at a much, much lower price. As rayon is relatively new to the market, more recent rayon versions are coming into the market day by day, which are better and more durable than before.

Rayon tends to lose its shape and appearance way quicker than other fabrics in the industry. Rayon is not water-resistant and loses its original look, like getting wrinkled and stretched as soon as it comes in contact with water. 


wool img

Undoubtedly, wool is one of the softest natural fibers in the world. Warmth and comfort come to mind when wool is mentioned in any context. Wool is not commonly used for upholstering, but it comes with various benefits if used. Wool does not fade or wrinkle under any circumstances and is heat and water-resistant at the same time. 

The only drawback of using wool fabric for upholstering is that it is expensive to buy and would cost you extra for upholstering with the fabric. 



Linen is one of the most affordable fabrics to use for upholstering. Linen is a natural fiber, but it is often mixed with synthetic fibers to boost its usage benefits. To the user, linen is smooth and soft, and highly comfortable. The strength of linen earns itself one of the top ranks when discussing the strengths of other fabrics used in upholstery. Linen is an eco-friendly material that is resistant to fading and mildew. 

Even with all the benefits mentioned, linen is not suitable for everyday rough use and will require professional cleaning to avoid any damage to the fabric while cleaning. Easy soiling and wrinkling also add to the drawbacks of using linen fabric for upholstery. 

Take Away

Making up your mind for the type of fabric for your upholstery project is your decision to make. Apart from the seven types of fabrics mentioned above, there are several others you could use for upholstery. Still, several factors need to be taken into consideration before making your final decision. Matching your fabric with your home design, do you have pets or not, do you have kids or not, what if your budget, etc. are some of the many factors you need to consider before making up your mind and choosing a type of upholstery fabric for your furniture. If you rush the process, you might mess your decision up, and you should instead take your time in making your decision.

Making the correct choice while picking out upholstery fabrics is extremely important to make your home stand out. Do you want to know about more ways in which you could change the interior of your home to make it stand out? If yes, you might want to consider going through our guide on interior design tips to make your home stand out!

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