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How to Protect your Leather Couch

Leather furniture is known for its durability and stylish appearance. Many people choose leather couches when they have a family, as leather is harder to stain than upholstery and it can last a long time. Although leather is durable, it won’t last forever unless it is well taken care of and protected. It’s a good idea to get a professional clean and treatment for your leather couch on a regular basis, and in the meantime, follow some basic maintenance rules to help protect your leather couch against unnecessary wear and tear.

Clean up spills quickly

Although leather doesn’t stain as easily as upholstery furniture, it’s still important that you mop up any spills as quickly and thoroughly as possible. Liquids can cause discolouration, and grease stains can be extremely difficult to get out of leather couches. Avoid eating and drinking on your leather couch, and if anything does get spilled, make sure it’s wiped up quickly with a soft dry cloth. With rapid attention you may be able to remove spills before they stain, but if left too long the stain can set and it will be difficult to remove without professional assistance.

Clean with a damp cloth and dry thoroughly

Avoid using solvents or commercial cleaners to clean your leather lounge. Chemical cleaners can be too harsh and damage the leather. If you must use a detergent choose a commercial purpose-designed leather cleaner which is suitable for your type of leather couch. Most spills and stains can be wiped off with a damp cloth. Make sure you dry your lounge thoroughly after cleaning to avoid any residual water damage.

Reduce water damage

Water damage comes not only from spills but from leaving damp clothes on your lounge or sitting on the lounge in wet bathers. Make sure your leather lounge is positioned away from any potential water sources like open windows and that damp pets and anyone in wet clothing is discouraged from sitting on it.

Dust and vacuum your couch regularly

Although dust may not be an obvious source of damage, dirt can work its way into creases and dry out your leather causing it to become cracked and damaged over time. Make sure you dust and vacuum your furniture on a regular basis to remove any dust and dirt before it gets ground in to the leather. If furniture isn’t in regular use, consider covering it with a dustsheet to help keep it protected.

Keep leather out of direct sunlight

If possible, try to avoid positioning your leather couch in direct sunlight as long term exposure to light can cause it to fade. Too much sunlight may also dry out the leather over time and lead to cracks and other damage.

Remove small scratches with a microfibre cloth

Minor scratches and damage can be removed by buffing the leather lounge with a soft dry cloth or even with your fingers if they are clean. Getting rid of little scratches as quickly as possible can prevent them turning into bigger ones which then become cracks. To remove a minor scratch you can just rub gently with a soft cloth until it goes away.

Perform regular treatments

It’s a good idea to condition your leather couch on a regular basis. This can keep it looking its best and protect it against water and other types of damage. As leather is prone to drying out over time and developing cracks, regular conditioning every six to 12 months can help prevent this and keep your leather couch looking great for longer. There are a number of different preparations available commercially, or you can ask a professional for a recommendation. Make sure you spot test any new product before trying it on your leather lounge to make sure it won’t leave any marks.

Your leather couch is an investment and it’s important to maintain it regularly to help keep it looking its best. Leather changes appearance over time and well-aged leather furniture will still look great long into the future as long as it is well cared for now. Maintaining leather furniture is easier than taking care of most other upholstery, and the results are worth the time and effort taken to keep your furniture clean, stain free and protected from damage.

How to Remove Dog and Cat Scratches from Leather Furniture

Pets can be a wonderful addition to any home, but they may not always mix well with the furniture. Leather, although generally hardwearing and durable, can be vulnerable to damage from cat and dog scratches, as well as from other wear and tear. Small scratches can be detrimental to the appearance of your leather furniture, and can lead to further damage and cracking, so it’s important that they are dealt with as soon as possible.

Fortunately, it is possible to repair dog and cat scratches without too much trouble. Here are some tips to help get your leather furniture looking next to new again.

Clean and condition regularly

Regular maintenance of your leather furniture will make it less vulnerable to damage from scratches and cracks and will make it easier to repair. Tiny scratches can often be buffed out gently with a soft dry microfibre cloth, and this is a good idea to prevent further damage. Well-conditioned leather can be more flexible and less likely to dry out and crack further if scratched slightly.

It is recommended that leather furniture is kept free from dirt and dust and out of direct sunlight. You should clean and condition your furniture, either professionally or with a commercial leather-cleaning product.

Small scratches

If scratches are tiny, it can be possible to deal with them yourself with the help of a leather repair kit. It’s a good idea to speak to the manufacturer of your leather furniture before attempting any home repairs. They may be able to send you a leather repair kit or recommend a treatment that is suitable for your type of leather. Leather furniture can be easily damaged and the last thing you want to do is to make a small scratch worse, so if you are in any doubt, it is probably worth calling a professional to deal with your repairs.

There are a number of recommendations for products which can help remove small scratches, anything from boot polish to olive oil. Before putting any product on your leather furniture, always check that it is suitable for use with the type of leather you have, as using the wrong products may lead to further damage and staining.

Larger scratches

Repairing seriously scratched leather is a difficult task and with so many different types of leather around, certain chemicals and preparations can react adversely and ruin your furniture. It is usually a good idea to get help from a professional when removing anything but the smallest of scratches.

The process for repairing scratched leather involves gluing a piece of leather across the cut from the inside and pulling the edges as close as possible together. Leather filler is then used to smooth out any inconsistencies in the surface, and the whole area is tinted to match the rest of the piece of furniture.

If the scratches are placed along stitching you may require the services of an auto upholsterer to fully repair the damage, as this is out of the scope of usual leather repairs. Many professional repairers will also finish off with a conditioner and sealant to help protect your lounge from further damage.

The results from getting a professional repair job on your leather lounge can be astounding and you can have even fairly large scratches removed quickly and effectively. Your leather furniture is an investment, and taking the time to repair any damage as quickly as possible can help it last long into the future. Once you know that it is reasonably straightforward to fix cat and dog scratches in furniture, you can relax and enjoy being a pet owner and having leather furniture, without having to stress about the thought of scratches and damage.

Love the Leather Look: Leather Care for your Lounge

Leather is luxurious, and leather furniture can add character, and a touch of class to any home. The key is in choosing the right piece – and looking after it. Whether it’s a leather lounge, armchair, ottoman or even bedhead, leather can help create a distinctive look, set a mood and if properly cared for, last a lifetime. A pen or ink mark for instance, need not spell disaster, if you’ve given proper attention to your lounge from day one.

Choose wisely

In choosing any piece of leather furniture, it’s essential to understand that, like all furniture, there are various levels of quality. A cheap price can be a tell tale sign of cheap manufacture, but then again, this is not always the case. Shopping around is always a good first step to get an idea of what you like, and to compare levels of quality. Make a point of asking questions (including warranty information) so that you know exactly what you are getting for the price.

Picture perfect

Many people will have a set image of what a ‘classic’ leather lounge is, when in reality, leather lounges may come in all shapes, sizes and styles (take a look at a couple of non-traditional styles here that have now become classics in their own right). If you live in a contemporary apartment, you might opt for a sleek design and minimalist white. A classic Chesterfield looks wonderful surrounded by dark wood and warm tones. Or you might eschew tradition and think colour. How about a beautiful rich wine or deep olive? From classic to contemporary to shabby chic, there’s a leather lounge to suit the occasion.

Material matters

Just as the frame of a lounge may come in various materials, including wood or metal, so too, leather comes in various types, and grades. The International Council of Tanners website has some information on leather grades. Types of leather often used in furniture manufacture include:

  • Pure Aniline – High grade hide that is drum dyed, so no pigment is applied to surface. It will display natural marks and lines.
  • Pull Up Aniline – Also drum dyed but with a topcoat of oil or wax applied resulting in a ‘distressed’ leather look.
  • Pigmented Leather – Drum dyed leather with a thicker layer of both pigment and protective finish. This conceals natural markings and lines.
  • Corrected Grain – Similar to pigmented leather but also embossed with a pattern or grain which fully conceals all natural markings.
  • Nubuck – also called leather suede. This is a drum dyed aniline leather with a buffed surface.

It’s important to ask about the materials when shopping for a lounge or other leather furniture. Understanding what you are buying will help ensure you find the best fit for your home, and very importantly, ensure you know how to look after it.

Caring for your leather lounge

Once your leather lounge is in place and looking beautiful, you should remember that it needs looking after. In general, leather should be thoroughly cleaned every three to four months to maintain the life of the lounge. Do remember that quality leather will soften and natural marks may add character that develops with age.

The best products for cleaning leather are those designed specifically for that purpose. Your best choice is likely to be a professional leather care product that suits the type of leather you have. Nubuck for instance, is sensitive to water stains and may absorb spills and dirt more readily than other types of leather, so requires a specific cleaning product. Remember too, that non-chemical cleaners are a better option and will help to preserve the life of your furniture. At Devine LeatherCare, we have a range of non-chemical cleaners that will help keep your lounge looking great.

Once you have the correct product, apply it to a small test spot first to ensure you have the optimal cleaner. Use a dry (never wet) cloth. If cleaning Nubuck in particular, be careful to avoid saturating the area as this may result in marks. Do dry the lounge thoroughly with a cloth, before applying a leather conditioner.

Other things you can do to help preserve your leather lounge include keeping it away from heaters and direct sunlight, being careful not to leave wet garments or towels on it, and removing any spills immediately.

How to remove ink and pen marks from your leather furniture

As much as we may take care in looking after our leather lounges, accidents do happen. So what to do should your beautiful leather furniture be tarred with ink or pen marks? Your first option might be to apply your professional cleaning product as you normally do. If you are lucky and it is a very light mark, this may be enough to remove it quickly and easily. Fresh marks in general will be easier to remove than older ones, which is why it’s always a good idea to act quickly.

Should you find the mark persists, or if you have suede lounge, than you may need professional help.

The art of colour change

Should disaster strike and you have a dark stain that is going nowhere, if you’ve changed your tastes over the years, or if you’ve simply had a change of heart, it’s worth knowing there is an option. Rather than throwing away your precious lounge, why not think colour change.

At Devine LeatherCare, we are able to dye an entire lounge an entirely new colour. A dark ink mark on an old leather lounge might be just the catalyst for a brand new look that will revamp your lounge, and your home. Imagine your ‘80s apricot sofa in a dark wine red or chocolate for example!

So if you have pen and ink marks on your leather lounge, if you are looking for a colour change, or if you simply need advice on leather care, don’t be shy in coming forward. Professional advice is the best way to keep your lounge just the way you love it.