Bonded leather durability on sofa ??!

redcamalotNovember 29, 2009


I just came from the Furniture store and saw a sofa made of bonded leather. The sofa is at a pretty nice price for a leather , about 600$.

What is the durability of bonded leather ? Anyone had experience on that ??


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Thanks for the information !
I almost pull the trigger but I'll wait to known a little bit more about that.

Thanks for the link

    Bookmark   November 30, 2009 at 10:36PM
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Hi I bought a sofa and loveseat about 9 years ago- mabe 10 yrs- and it is either bonded or bycast I'm not sure which- I have dogs and s two yr old- I only now have to replace it because the springs went on the love seat- you would never know or believe what this furnature has endured and to see it it only looks a couple years old!!! I am a firm believer in bycast and bonded leathers for one your recycling and that's good for the enviroment for 2 they hold up well to pets- and three u can easily wipe it down with s damp cloth to clean any spills or greasy fingerprints your kids leave on it and don't forget it is inexpensive!!! That's the bonus!- don't be scared to buy bonded I've had a great experience with my set and I'm buying another bonded set again this week- now if only the manufacturer can get the springs and frame to hold up to the covering!!!!

    Bookmark   March 29, 2011 at 11:57PM
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I have not ever seen a leather that they glued strips of scrap together. Not cost effective, better to use vinyl and cheaper if you want cheap. It would fall apart before it got to the showroom

I am supposing that the term bonded was used in the context of bi-cast. Bi-cast is a promotional process, and yes you can use the word resine, and they dye it with tradtional leather dyes, and so on, not shoe polish, come on. But if you want to spend $600 and only $600 and are ok with it lasting a few years or more, I think it is a good value to our poster here.

Not to disagree in your explanition there,
A. Full grain (uncorrected hides),
B. fully aniline dyed(alinine dyed but no lacquer treatment, softer but has lots of color changes though out the hide, can still be a full hide),
C.Semi aniline dyed (alinine dyed but a thin layer of lacquer on the hide giving it a soft and yet protected layer, more color consistancy,sometimes even having a two tone look),
D. Protected (alinine dyed and lots of lacquer giving in more color consistancy than the other types).

All these leathers are ALL top grain, or the outer layer of the hide. I know of NO leather where they have veneered two leathers together. No reason to do so. All leathers have to be split off, or they are too thick and not plyable enough to even sit on. Some thick leathers I have seen are stiff like a board. And very hard to sew or upholster.

You pay more for a thin leather or a thicker leather because they have to do something extra for that feel. You may pay more for certain looks, because they have to find the hides you are looking for. Hides are a commodity.

Take a thin leather, very plyable, very expensive because they made it just for that purpose. How long will it last? 20-30 years. Why? If semi aniline dyed (semi protected with lacquer) you would not even wear the lacquer off during those years.

Top grain is just a term that they are not using the split or the secondary layer. But again, I will stress, they split off on all hides very early on the top hide off. They have to. The split gets used for purses, shoes, belts and yes, bi-cast which is a NEW process say the last 5 years or so.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2011 at 5:59PM
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This post is old, but, for furniture that will actually get lots of use: BEWARE BONDED "LEATHER"!!!

Bi-cast is apparently a bit better, and apparently can take some wear-and-tear, but BONDED "leather" isn't really "leather" at all, and IT WILL FALL APART!

Apparently bi-cast is very thin sheets of the cheap underside of the hide that is colored and sealed with a polyurethane.
BONDED leather is tiny leather scraps that are ground up and "recycled" with chemicals and formed into sheets and adhered to a fabric backing and sealed with poly.

I recently purchased two PERFECT aqua 1950's-style armchairs that are to die for (looks-wise). I got them at Overstock, as it was the only place I could find them - $300 each. They not only look great, but they are actually very comfortable to sit in.

Problems: first, because ALL fake leathers (bi-cast, bonded, vinyl) are essentially PLASTIC, you actually STICK to the chair. ANNOYING! NOT AT ALL LIKE GENUINE FULL-GRAIN LEATHER! So, in summer a fake leather chair simply SUCKS!

Big problem: When they arrived I noticed that one seat cushion had a teeny-tiny pin-prick in it. I looked at it and peeled it back - the bonded "leather" is literally tissue-paper thin and adhered to a white woven fabric. In otherwords, BONDED LEATHER WILL NOT LAST!!!

I have some heavy-duty Mid-Mod upholstery fabric that compliments the aqua chairs, so I intend to recover the seat cushions with that, since the seats get the most wear. But, once the arms get scratched, the chairs will be USELESS and will have to be dumped.

As for "eco-friendly" GENUINE LEATHER is best - it lasts FOREVER even with kids, dogs and cats, and when you decide to get a new sofa you can remove the leather and re-use it on other things like covering ottomans and chairs.

If you are determined to not use (or pay for) genuine leather, then go with a high-grade Upholstery or Marine-Grade Vinyl - that will last, but you will still stick to it. Otherwise, consider any furniture made from Bonded or bi-cast "leather" as a short-term trendy item (think Ikea quality) that will be ditched sooner than later.

Sadly, it seems the invention of "Bonded" and "Bi-Cast" "leathers" has actually made finding GENUINE Leather furniture very difficult, and much more expensive than it was (even accounting for inflation) a decade ago. So, genuine leather is now totally out of my price-range, therefore (since I HATE when my skin sticks to my furniture) FABRIC is the only way I can afford to go now. High-quality ultra-suede is cheaper (but not "cheap") and the next best thing after Genuine Leather for wear-and-tear and long-lasting quality.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2012 at 10:52PM
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Their is a debate if Bi-cast or Bonded leather is good for the environment. As the leather scraps are bio-degradable, but after made into a leather like product, its not so bio-degradable, but a plastic now. Not good for landfills.

Worldwide demand for Leather is increasing and the supply for hides is not keeping up with this demand. So tanneries are processing more high-end leather and the lower leather price points are moving up.

But their are some very good points made here by

    Bookmark   July 18, 2012 at 11:40PM
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I think you will find that if you can't afford a high end leather it would be better to choose a lower cost pigmented leather than a bonded leather. With a pigment leatehr which I belive are about 75% of leathers sold the surface is more or less painted on as the leather surface is not good enough on its own. There are some advantages to a pigmented leather in that they clean up easily and can withstand sunlight and heat like in your car. The disadvantages are they don't look as natural, tend to be hotter in summer and colder in winter and when they do scratch they look worse. All in all I think it is is a better choice than bonded and will last longer.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2012 at 12:40PM
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I purchased a bonded leather sofa in 2011. In 2013 it started to show delimitation. Then it started to flake badly. I contacted the store where it was purchased. The next day they called saying they would give me the full price paid as a credit for anything in the store. That is the good part.
We were told the bonding had some cotton in it & that was the problem. They said it has been corrected. I don't know but we will replace the sofa but not with bonded leather.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2014 at 9:56AM
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Metal based sofas are the most durable furniture accessories in your drawing room...

    Bookmark   August 5, 2014 at 3:04AM
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I would like to clear up some misconceptions about "bonded" leathers.

When this fabric category first appeared there were several different technologies tried with varying results. Bicast was one of those early technologies.

I currently deal with dozens of fabric suppliers and have not seen a "bicast" leather for many years.

Today's "bonded" leathers are good, stable products that cost about the same as good quality vinyls and have many of the same properties.

That is because basically they are vinyls.

Although "bonded" leathers typically are made up of 10% - 20% "genuine" leather, all of that genuine leather is composed of leftover scraps which have been thoroughly chopped up, mixed with adhesives and turned into a backing for a vinyl fabric.

The face of the "bonded" leather that you see and touch has no real leather at all. It is 100% vinyl (usually polyurethane.)

The only "genuine" leather contained in "bonded" leather is used in the backing that you can't see or touch.

Although I have never seen or heard any reports of this leather backing peeling off or delaminating from the vinyl face, it provides absolutely none of the benefits consumers generally believe they are receiving when buying a "leather" sofa.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2014 at 7:04PM
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If you can afford it I would suggest getting a full aniline dyed leather which means it is dyed all the way through. Think of it like a carrot when cut in half it is the same color everwhere as opposed to a raddish which has color on the outside and is white on the inside.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2014 at 7:12PM
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