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Thread: Performance Fabrics

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Alexandria VA
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    11,568

    Default Re: Performance Fabrics

    H&M is rolling out a huge new line of Performance fabrics but you will not see them in the store until after the New Year, they had quite a display of them at the High Point Market, and they are available to buy now, just the dealer swatches are still a couple months out. If you know the original name used by the maker of the fabric, sometimes we can cross reference it to the producer and locate it. You will see these fabrics appear on the H&M web site shortly, then you can order samples once they do. These will be the new fabrics in that category.

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    For more on rub ratings, here's a good article to read:

    https://blog.kothea.com/2009/06/26/m...s-wyzenbeek-3/

    The problem with chasing rub ratings, is that when you seek a high value, the fabric can feel scratchy and very much stiff, almost like cardboard. At a certain level you get into commercial duty fabrics and most people don't want the "Hand" of those to use in their home. Once thing I suggest to people who come into my store is take the sample of fabric and hold it to the cheek of your face and check the softness of it. Don't get caught in the trap of seeking durability first and foremost, the appearance and feel of the material is more important. Having said that, avoid light duty fabrics if the room is used everyday and don't buy silk fabrics for rooms that get sun.

    Myself, I buy leather for durability and blends of mostly natural components for my fabrics that my wife and I use in the home. Most people don't want to pay the price for a good natural blend (such as a Wool, Linen, Cotton content) in a tight weave - that kind of fabric can easily run over $ 150 (+) a yard. I understand fabrics and don't hesitate to buy in that category - in fact I only buy in that group - because they last and feel better than anything that is synthetic and man-made. However, I don't expect my customers to do so - they recoil at the prices for these high-quality fabrics. I can get 30 or more years out of a natural blend fabric (some of the best come out of Belgium). Upholstery manufacturers know this too, so they stay in the cheaper Polyester / Nylons etc that come out of Chinese mills. At the end of the day, this is a price-driven industry and consumers want a low price first and foremost. However, when you see a high quality fabric on a frame that is properly made, it is stunning and gives years of service. A can of Scotchguard applied to these kind of fabrics will do virtually the same as Crypton/Sunbrella and last far longer. But again, its a cost issue for most. I still have a Wing Chair done in a Greff Fabric that was built in 1986 in daily use, and it still looks superb. There are no polyester-based fabric pieces that will be around that long.

    Personally, I would not buy a Performance fabric - they don't appeal to me because they look and feel cheap, but its the rage these days because people want to feel they can eat a pizza on it then scrub off the grease and tomato sauce. <shrug> If that's their lifestyle, that's fine - I eat my pizza at the kitchen table, not on the sofa. But if I'm really after that kind of throw-everything-at-it lifestyle, I'm going leather anyways as its will easily outperform even the best Performance fabric.
    Duane Collie
    Straight answers from thirty years in the business.
    My Private Messages are Disabled - Please ask questions here in the forum
    I ask that you do NOT call my store with general furniture questions, that is what the forum is for

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Posts
    17

    Default Re: Performance Fabrics

    Duane,

    1. Does Taylor King offer any high quality natural blend fabrics within or outside of their Portfolio program?
    2. If not, how much extra would it likely cost to order a Taylor King sofa with a high quality natural blend fabric instead of a TK fabric? And is that something that you'd recommend?
    3. Are there any specific upholstery makers that manufacture high quality natural blend fabrics that you regard highly (Greff, others)?

    Thanks.

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Alexandria VA
    Posts
    11,568

    Default Re: Performance Fabrics

    There is an extensive range of fabrics in Taylor King, none of the premium ones are in Portfolio. Even the good ones are not on par with ones from F. Schumacher, Robert Allen, Scalamandre, Kravet, etc., however. I have no idea on pricing - premium fabrics (COM) can be $ 100 a year to $ 500 a yard, its all over the board. If you have a Design Center near where you live, that's the place to go to see premium fabrics. We have on in Washington DC and most major cities do as well.

    https://designcenterdc.com/showrooms
    Duane Collie
    Straight answers from thirty years in the business.
    My Private Messages are Disabled - Please ask questions here in the forum
    I ask that you do NOT call my store with general furniture questions, that is what the forum is for

  4. #14
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Location
    Huntsville, AL
    Posts
    56

    Default Re: Performance Fabrics

    Hancock and Moore must be getting more requests for Fabric for their furniture. I know they have always mainly done leather.

    As far as Fabric, based on what I've read here, never use it on a motion piece if possible. I've figured that out now. I've never had a sofa or chair to pill, but I don't sit on them near as often as a recliner. So they will last much longer in Fabric in my house anyway.

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Alexandria VA
    Posts
    11,568

    Default Re: Performance Fabrics

    Furniture is a fashion industry, though most consumers view it as a utility one ("I need a new sofa, the old one is tired"), and consumers will mostly buy what is in style as shown as in the shelter/decor magazines. Right now that trend is still transitional with predominant colors being whites, off-whites and grays. Like all trends, that will change over time and a new "fresh" one will come along once there is market saturation in the current look. Within the current trend a lot are showing in both fabrics and leathers, and because of the clean/plain/simple patterns in vogue, they almost need to be performance fabrics due to the soiling / cleaning issues (or in leather), which is why that segment is hot right now.

    I do discourage people from buying fabric recliners as I know the cost of re-upholstery and the wear rates that are inevitable to them. Leather just lasts so much longer it's the wise choice if the piece is going to be used on a regular basis.
    Duane Collie
    Straight answers from thirty years in the business.
    My Private Messages are Disabled - Please ask questions here in the forum
    I ask that you do NOT call my store with general furniture questions, that is what the forum is for

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