What is upholstery?

What is Upholstery Fabric?

Upholstery fabric is a specialized material used to cover and decorate furniture, such as sofas, chairs, and headboards. It plays a critical role in both the aesthetic appeal and functional performance of furniture pieces. In this blog, we’ll explore what upholstery fabric is, its various types, uses, and how to choose the right one for your needs.

Understanding Upholstery Fabric

Upholstery fabric is designed to be durable and withstand daily wear and tear. It is typically thicker and stronger than other types of fabric, making it suitable for furniture that experiences regular use. This fabric can be made from a variety of materials, each offering different benefits and characteristics.


Types of Upholstery Fabric

Cotton: Soft and breathable, cotton is a popular choice for its comfort and versatility. However, it can be prone to staining and may require protective treatments.

Linen: Known for its natural luster and smooth texture, linen is highly durable and resistant to pilling. It is ideal for creating a sophisticated look but can wrinkle easily.

Wool: Wool is strong and naturally resistant to dirt and wear. It provides excellent insulation and is a great choice for cozy, warm upholstery.

Leather: Leather is a classic choice for upholstery, known for its durability and timeless appeal. It is easy to clean and develops a beautiful patina over time.

Polyester: Polyester is durable, resistant to fading, and easy to clean. It is often blended with other fibers to enhance its properties.

Nylon: Extremely strong and resilient, nylon is resistant to abrasion and is often used in commercial settings.

Acrylic: Acrylic fabric mimics the properties of wool and is resistant to stains and fading. It is lightweight and easy to maintain.

Microfiber: Made from ultra-fine polyester fibers, microfiber is soft, durable, and resistant to stains. It is an excellent choice for households with pets and children.

Uses of Upholstery Fabric

  1. Furniture Coverings

Upholstery fabric is primarily used to cover furniture, such as sofas, chairs, ottomans, and headboards. The choice of fabric can significantly impact the comfort, durability, and appearance of the furniture piece.

  1. Cushions and Pillows

In addition to furniture, upholstery fabric is also used for making cushions and pillows. These items require fabrics that are comfortable, durable, and easy to clean, ensuring they maintain their look and feel over time.

  1. Automotive Upholstery

Upholstery fabric is used in cars, trucks, and other vehicles to cover seats and interiors. This fabric needs to be highly durable, resistant to UV rays, and easy to clean to withstand the unique demands of automotive environments.

How to Choose the Right Upholstery Fabric

Selecting the right upholstery fabric involves considering several factors:

Durability: Choose a fabric that can withstand the expected level of use. For high-traffic areas, opt for durable materials like leather or synthetic blends.

Comfort: The fabric should be comfortable to sit on, especially for pieces of furniture that will be used frequently.

Aesthetic Appeal: Consider the color, pattern, and texture of the fabric to ensure it complements the overall decor of your space.

Maintenance: Some fabrics require more care than others. Choose a fabric that fits your lifestyle and maintenance preferences.

Budget: Upholstery fabrics come in a wide range of prices. Determine your budget and find a fabric that offers the best balance of quality and cost.


Upholstery fabric is a vital component in furniture design, impacting both its appearance and functionality. With a wide variety of natural and synthetic options available, choosing the right upholstery fabric depends on factors such as durability, comfort, maintenance, and aesthetic appeal. Whether you’re refurbishing a beloved chair or selecting material for a new sofa, understanding the different types of upholstery fabric can help you make an informed decision.

Vista Furnishing, with its extensive experience in manufacturing high-quality textiles, offers a diverse range of upholstery fabrics that cater to different needs and preferences. Their commitment to quality ensures that you get the best fabric for your furniture, enhancing both its beauty and longevity.