Vinyl, also referred to as faux leather, is the most widely used alternative to leather. Many different industries have employed vinyl. You’ve probably heard of vintage vinyl records, stylish vinyl flooring, and vinyl furniture.
Vinyl can be used frequently to replace leather. It is possible to replicate leather exactly. It also becomes easy to work with industrial sewing machines on faux leather. Let’s get to know about the mentioned leather.
History – By abbreviating the name of its original product, polyvinyl chloride, vinyl leather got its moniker. This synthetic plastic item is created using petroleum-based materials. Vinyl leather also goes by this term because of how much it resembles real leather. Some characteristics of vinyl leather –
- High heat retention
- Easy to clean
Vinyl leather was first created as a product called Presstoff in Germany. It was made during the war period when the leather cloth was heavily rationed. The Naugahyde was made by the U.S. Rubber Company in 1920. Later, other industries adopted this and utilized it to make handbags. Since then, synthetic leather textiles have become widely available.
Creation – Making imitation leather involves just three easy steps. Cotton or polyester may be used as the basic material, but it must have some degree of porosity. The vinyl leather fabric that results from binding PVC to this base fabric can then be cut into the necessary shapes and sizes.
In the binding process, lubricants, stabilizers, and plasticizers are employed. These improve softness, toughness, and flexibility, respectively. The finished item is a fabric that first has a leather-like appearance.
Real Vs vinyl leather – Unlike genuine leather, which may have a different grain flow, faux leather has a homogeneous grain structure. Keep in mind that natural leather is created from animal skin that has been dyed to create a soft and durable fabric.
While some contend that real leather is preferable to vinyl, this isn’t always the case. Vinyl offers benefits over the leather that it cannot match.
Impact on the environment – The fact that an animal must die to produce real leather is one of the material’s biggest drawbacks. This fabric has long been the target of opposition from numerous activists.
This issue is soon resolved by synthetic leather. It is produced industrially without using any animal deaths. However, because the plastic used to produce it is not biodegradable, many environmentalists have vowed to stop using it. To solve this, businesses are now using biodegradable polymers in place of PVC in fake leather.
Benefits – Although leather has numerous advantages, it is expensive! You can get the look of leather in vinyl for less money. Faux is very low maintenance and beautiful. Faux leather is a strong competitor to real leather because of its numerous additional advantages.
Where genuine leather would not be practical owing to cost or exposure, vinyl has various applications.