Flooring (main) : Flooring articles : Leather Floors

Flooring: Specialty Finishes: Leather

Not everyone is content with standard finishes for their floors - despite the huge range of beautiful and hard wearing surfaces available.

For something a little different, especially for an architect designed home, they might choose a specialty flooring, such as polished concrete, metal, or even a leather floor.

Leather is a beautiful natural material (cowhide) which grows more beautiful as it ages. It has a rich and luxurious look in subtle, glowing colours, or it can be dyed any shade in the spectrum.

Leather floors are soft and warm underfoot, and have wonderful sound insulation properties.

While a leather floor is naturally very expensive, leather tiles make a soft, comfortable and inviting floor. It can add an aura of richness and versatility to any room in the home and complement any leather furniture, or contrast modern steel and glass pieces.

It is possible to get tiles made from recycled leather, which is environmentally better than new leather, and may be less expensive.

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Where to Use Leather Flooring

Leather is not suitable for use in wet areas such as kitchen or bathroom, even though it can be treated to be water resistant. It also does not cope well with high humidity, and can become mouldy if damp.

Because of the richness and softness of its surface, leather floors are best suited to living rooms, libraries, studies and dens and bedrooms.

Where possible, install leather floors in rooms that get a lot of sunshine, as this helps the leather to age really well.

Although not as durable as other types of flooring, a leather floor is relatively durable, since it's made from the same material that leather shoes are made out of. Looked after and installed in the right rooms, a leather floor may well be the last floor you'll need to install.

Maintaining Leather Floors

Because of the softness of the surface, leather floors need meticulous maintenance. They should be vacuumed regularly and mopped only with a slightly damp, well-rung mop. Do not use water and/or soap on the floor!

The floor should also be waxed once or twice a year. Your floor dealer will recommend a special cleaner and wax for your leather floor.

Disadvantages of Leather Tile Floors

  1. Cost: leather floors are very expensive
  2. Maintenance: the floors require a high level of maintenance
  3. Susceptible to damp: floors need to be protected from water and high humidity to avoid water damage and mould.

Leather Floor Installation

Installation should only be done by an accredited leather flooring specialist.

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