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Borax Johnson

Upholstery fabric anarchy

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I’m looking for alternatives to traditional fabric types for interior upholstery for a 40 ish foot cruiser. Any feedback on ultra Suede? Thinking a bit outside the box. 

Thanks!

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Ultra Suede (microfiber) is probably the best thing you can use. Pricey but lasts forever and looks wonderful.

Hinckley's recommend it highly in their boat care book.

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^^^ Excellent, as long as it's outdoor ultrasuede from Sunbrella, Outdura, Tempotest, etc.  It's incredibly durable, comfortable, and rich looking.  But a lot of others are as good now.  Outdoor fabrics have come a long way in the last few years, with fancy stuff you'd never believe was outdoor.  All the major brands are great.  So shop around.

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We had non-outdoor ultrasuede on the saloon cushions in our cat. Still good after 8 years of full time living aboard. Amazing durability. Not sure why you need outdoor fabrics inside the boat.

We had a kid get REALLY BLUE icing from a crappy Safeway sheet cake on it. Wiped off with a bit of soap and a cloth.

On our previous boat (also 8 years living aboard) we replaced the cushion fabric 3x (once just before selling it to be fair). Regular cotton/poly fabrics don't last well if you're only sitting on the same couch every day!

If the budget doesn't run to ultrasuede, talk to an upholsterer about fabric choices. You want something very durable, with nylon coil zippers with plastic sliders. Zinc or aluminum sliders don't go the distance and corrode. Also wrap the foam cushion in polyester batting to round the edges of the foam and prevent fabric wear. Also seems to make it breathe better. It should be fixed on with spray adhesive.

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Zonker,

Perhaps I'm being too hard on the non-marine stuff.  The regular microsuede is great.  It was on Blurocket for 20 years before we  redecorated with a plaid Sunbrella.  Another great one, and really cheap, is the chenille (Charisma?) from Bartson, which comes in lots of colors.  It's child and Labrador-proof.

Mostly I want to encourage people to look around, as there are so many options now.

I agree completely on the rest of it.

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Ultrasuede be da bomb! Here’s a pic of scrubbing the bunk cushion after 10 years of tropical cruising. I seriously did not think they were this mouldy when inside the boat. They had a cotton sheet coveting them becuz it is more comfortable.

They easily scrubbed to like-new.

 

 

83C4A591-910B-46C5-917C-1241290222B7.jpeg

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There are these newfangled ‘washing machines.’ Really, you can throw cushion covers in the wash. With some frequency. In fact, it’s better if you do, since dirt ingrains over time, and is destructive to the cloth fibers. 

What you should NOT do is throw them in the dryer.

please reread my above post. SYNTHETIC is recommended

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^ This.

My wife just laundered some filthy microfiber covers from our couch and they came out perfect.

P.S. to the best of my knowledge, ALL microfiber fabric is synthetic.

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