Beach houses tend to have their own set of requirements when it comes to the materials used inside and outside the house. This is due to the unique weather conditions, as well as the unique lifestyle associated with spending time at the coast.
Leather is a good choice when it comes to furniture at a beach house. Leather furniture is practical, aesthetically pleasing, easy to clean, and is available in a multitude of colors. The material is extremely durable and will last for many years provided it is properly taken care of.
While leather is a great choice on the coast, especially when compared to many other materials, there are certain ways in which it is best utilized in order to ensure the best benefit for your circumstances. This refers not only to the practical aspect but also to maintenance and aesthetic benefits.
Is Leather Good For a Beach House
Leather is an excellent choice for furniture at your beach house. This is for a multitude of reasons. Firstly, from an aesthetic point of view, leather furniture can be seen as a blank canvas from where any look can be created.
While not traditionally associated with a beach house aesthetic, leather can be dressed up or down, through clever design decisions, to create a visually appealing look that works for any setting.
By selecting individual leather pieces as opposed to an entire suite of leather sofas, for example, you are able to bring in leather elements throughout the home without it becoming too overbearing.
From a practical point of view, leather is extremely easy to clean. This is highly important in a coastal home because guests enjoying the coastal lifestyle will tend to sit on your furniture with lotions on their skin, or they may sit on your furniture with wet bathing suits.
Sand, food, and dog hair are some of the other elements that may end up on your furniture, especially in a coastal holiday rental, and so leather makes a great option here in that it can simply be wiped down to ensure that it is completely clean.
If the house is being used as a holiday rental, you will almost certainly have people moving in and out of the house constantly, and so the material for your furniture will need to be extremely durable and able to withstand heavy traffic and potential abuse.
Leather is the perfect option in this context, because despite being easy to clean through a simple wipe with a damp cloth, the material is exceptionally durable and able to withstand huge amounts of wear and tear.
Leather is available in a multitude of colors, which means that you have the freedom to be able to choose any color that suits your needs and whatever aesthetic you choose.
Can Leather Furniture Get Wet?
Naturally, leather can and will get wet when it is being used as part of your furniture on an everyday basis. While this is unavoidable, it’s certainly not ideal, and you should avoid allowing your leather to get wet in order to prevent any long-term damage to the material.
The main issue with leather getting wet is actually in the drying process. When it becomes wet, the oils present within the leather become bonded to the molecules of the water. When the water dries and starts to evaporate, the oils in the leather are drawn out along with the water.
Because the oils have now been pulled out of the leather and it no longer has all its natural oils, the leather starts to become brittle while losing its inherent suppleness.
If Leather Gets Wet, Here’s What To Do:
Firstly, you’ll need to wipe away any water which remains on the leather piece. Allow them to dry, but not completely, so that there is still a little bit of dampness to the leather. While it is still damp, place a coat of leather conditioner over the leather.
To apply it, smooth it evenly over the surface using small, circular motions. Once you have applied it over the entire surface, leave it to dry, preferably overnight. What happens during this time is that the leather conditioner starts to penetrate the leather.
This absorption occurs through the pores of the leather, which have been left open thanks to the evaporating water. As a result, the oils that were previously stripped are replenished.
If, after this process, the leather is still dry in some areas, you can add further conditioner to the surface before buffing the surface thoroughly.
Now that you’ve dried the leather and no longer have to deal with a wet leather situation, you will need to ensure that the leather is water-resistant in the future so that you can prevent more damage to the leather if it is ever exposed to water at any later stage.
This can be done through the use of a waterproofing spray or beeswax cream, giving added protection to the leather goods.
Benefits of Leather Furniture
Leather furniture possesses a host of benefits over traditional fabric upholstery. The biggest benefit is that with proper care, the leather will actually improve with age as opposed to becoming worse.
This means that you will be able to enjoy your leather furniture for many years after its fabric counterparts have become worn out. Leather is also exceptionally stylish and tends never to go out of fashion, with a timeless aesthetic that can be simply updated with contemporary accessories.
When it comes to color choices, leather offers a multitude of options. Previously, leather was thought to come only in a series of shades of brown. In more recent years, leather has become available in a series of colors and textures previously thought impossible.
This means that you’ll be able to find leather in any color you’d like to have it, giving you countless options to customize your leather furniture pieces however you see fit.
Leather’s comfort index is almost unsurpassed. This material is soft, smooth, and cozy while retaining its elegance and overall luxurious appeal.
The ease of cleaning is another major appeal of leather furniture, especially in homes with frequent guests, children, or pets. All you need to do to clean your leather furniture is wipe it with a damp cloth.
Another option is using a damp paper towel, which has the added benefit of being able to be thrown away after the cleaning is completed.
If you are somebody who suffers from allergies, you will be better served by leather than fabric upholstery, because leather doesn’t attract or retain anything like pollen, dust mites, or animal hair. This is in major contrast to fabric upholstery which tends to attract and hold onto allergens.
The incredible lifespan of leather is a major plus, because it means you won’t have to replace your leather furniture with any regularity.
Styling a Coastal Home with Leather Furniture
When it comes to styling a coastal home with leather furniture, the approach may be different from that when styling a more traditional house away from the ocean. It is still possible, however, to style your home by the beach making use of leather furniture while retaining a coastal feel.
Firstly, you’ll want to mix up the materials you decide to use. If you’re making use of a leather sofa as a centerpiece, every other item that you choose will need to complement it. This is achieved through using other natural materials that simultaneously exude coastal charm and contemporary elegance.
Timber items, rugs made of natural fibers, and art with lots of texture will serve as great complementary features to your leather furniture while retaining a contemporary coastal aesthetic.
Another important consideration is the colors of the ocean. While the typical thing for people on the coast to do is make use of blues and whites at every opportunity, there is a way to bring in the colors of the ocean without going the traditional route.
From soft whites to sandy hues, and natural timber’s tan color to the bright blue color of the ocean, you can make use of coastal colors which complement the leather of your choice. The key idea here is to use bright colors (such as blue) in moderation.
By using accents of blues, you will be able to offset the muteness of the natural tones found in the leather and timber.
Natural materials are key in any coastal home, because the coast itself is naturally remiss of any man-made materials. If you happen to incorporate something extremely modern into your coastal décor, you should carefully balance this out by contrasting it with something neutral and soft.
If you achieve this balance, you will have a home that, while retaining its beachside appeal, will ooze charm and elegance.
Alternative Fabric Options
If you decide not to opt for leather to upholster the furniture at your beach house, you will still be left with plenty of options. The type of fabric you choose, however, will depend on your aesthetic vision for the home, as well as how much the room is actually going to be used at any given time.
If the area in question will not be used too frequently, or if you are making use of washable slipcovers, you could opt for natural fabrics such as woven cotton, linen, or sailcloth. It’s important that these slipcovers are washable in a machine rather than needing dry-cleaning.
Osnaburg, which is a natural fabric with a rustic feel, is a great option for your coastal home. It is similar to burlap in texture, with a softer texture. Aesthetically, it looks more like linen.
You should, however, opt for natural fabrics that are more heavyweight and are able to put up with a lot of usages on a daily basis, and when choosing fabrics, it’s good to bear in mind that any fabric with a pattern on it will be less susceptible to showing stains if they do occur.
Taking Care of Leather Furniture
In order to ensure that your leather furniture lasts as long as possible, it’s important that you take very good care of it throughout its lifetime. Firstly, you will need a high-quality leather conditioner. This will ensure that your leather receives the moisture it needs.
It’s best to avoid products made of either silicone or wax. This is because these products tend to make the leather sticky, which is an undesirable trait for leather furniture to have.
If your leather furniture is frequently exposed to the sun, you should ensure that it is well-protected by making use of a leather conditioner that features built-in sun protection. If you don’t do this, your leather may begin to age prematurely due to overexposure to the sun.
To keep your leather in its best possible shape, it is recommended that you dust it off once weekly using a damp, soft cloth. Every six months or so, make use of a leather cleaner to give the product an extremely good and deep cleaning.
Using a leather conditioner after a thorough cleaning will ensure that your leather retains as much moisture as possible throughout the year. This should be performed more frequently if you live in a particularly dry house.
In order to ensure that your leather furniture remains in good condition, it’s important to keep water away from it as far as possible. While a few drops of water will not cause long-lasting damage, large amounts of moisture could potentially ruin the leather altogether.
If the moisture is left in place and allowed to remain, you will end up with a moisture stain, which is an extremely difficult stain to remove. The moisture can also cause the leather to lose its color and fade completely.
When cleaning your leather, do not use any cleaning products not designed for use with leather. This is particularly important when it comes to products that need to be mixed with water before use. These should be avoided whenever possible to prevent water damage to the leather.
Overall, leather is an excellent choice when it comes to furnishing your coastal home. If properly taken care of, leather will last you a lifetime and will be far less prone to damage than any other fabrics available.
In terms of styling, leather can be styled to suit any coastal home, and you will not be disappointed in your choice if you opt for leather in your home.