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Different Types of Sofa Leather

Leather is a popular choice of sofa material, as it has a variety of long-term benefits such as durability, comfort and more. There is a wide range of sofa leather types, each with their own benefits and drawbacks – and choosing the right one for your needs is important!

Whether you’re planning on getting corner sofas or investing in bespoke sofas, knowing what type of leather you prefer will help you choose your perfect furniture.


Most Popular Types of Sofa Leather

The nelson Sofa | Sofa Leather

Our suggestion: The Nelson Sofa (featured above)

Leather-making processes transforms this material into the classic look you’re used to. Several treatments result in the most popular sofa leathers you can choose from.


Full aniline leather is the choice to make for the highest quality of full grain leathers, as they have very few imperfections to worry about. The dyeing process to achieve aniline leather makes it less stain resistant, but it’s a softer choice for your sofa. Over time, aniline leather develops a stunning patina finish.


Providing colour uniformity and surface protection that pigmented leathers are known for, semi-aniline leather is a soft material. This type of leather can come in many different colours, maintaining their softness due to the natural top grain.


For a more durable solution that gives you easier maintenance options, pigmented leather is a preferred choice for aniline and semi-aniline leathers. Some of the leather’s softness is lost in the dyeing process, but pigmented leather offers the best resistance to soiling, wear and tear, and fading from light.


Consider the Grain

The Lennon Sofa | Sofa Leather

Our suggestion: The Lennon Sofa (featured above)

With the natural thickness of untreated leather being unusable, hides are split into thinner layers with two main cuts: split grain and top grain.

Full Grain

Full grain is a type of top leather that is left in its natural state. It provides the best quality for sofas, but its availability is very limited.

Split Grain

Split grain is typically used in those parts of furniture that your visitors – and you! – won’t see due to it being less durable and stiff.

Top Grain

As the surface layer of hides, top grain is both the strongest and most durable part. It provides a soft and supple solution above other grains.

Corrected Grain

After the top grain layer is sanded, buffed, and embossed, it gains a natural look with minimal flaws and imperfections.


Other Types of Sofa Leather

The Belvedere | Sofa Leather

Our suggestion: The Belvedere Sofa (featured above)

  • Bi-Cast. Also known as PU leather, bi-cast leather is a cost-effective solution of a split grain and a sheet of polyurethane colour glued together. This leather isn’t the best choice for wear and tear resistance, as friction makes it peel and crack.
  • Bonded. Cost-effective, bonded leather uses materials that would otherwise be thrown out. It’s also known as blended or reconstituted leather.
  • Faux. Typically made from fabrics that have been chemically treated, faux leathers are nonporous and easy to clean.
  • Nubuck. Top grain leather that has been buffed or sanded to have a suede and velvet look. Although it has a more uniform look, it’s high-maintenance and fragile.
  • Pull Up. With a natural appearance, pull up leather gains a unique and worn-in effect long term with wear and tear through lighter colours.

Knowing how to spot the difference between different types of leather, treatments, and grains can be tricky with an untrained eye. Instead of taking a gamble on your sofa leather, why not get in touch with us to know more? You can request fabric samples to choose which sofa leather you’d love more for your bespoke sofa.