Leather Characteristics and Awareness
Leather is the fastest growing upholstery material used in the United States today. Its strength, supple feel and wear ability set it apart from ordinary fabric coverings. Because leather has an average lifespan four times that of fabric coverings, its no wonder American consumers are increasingly discovering the tremendous value it represents. Mikhail Darafeev has served the furniture industry since the 1950's. They believe the more you know about leather, the more you'll appreciate leather.
Understanding the Marks of Quality Leather
Cattle encounter a variety of nature's elements in their search for food. Grazing often brings the animals in contact with trees, bushes and barbed wire, which can leave scratches and scars on the hide.
Markings: Are natural, and in no way affect the strength or wear ability of the leather. In fact, these markings are indeed the unique characteristics, which are your assurance of genuine leather.
Graining: Like human fingerprints, is unique to each individual hide, and is the hallmark of quality full-grain leather hides.
Branding Marks: Although seldom found on finished furniture, the branding mark is a part of virtuallyevery hide.
Neck Wrinkles: So that the steer will have the flexibility needed to move its head while grazing, theskin located on its neck is full and loose. As the neck stretches and contracts, wrinkles naturally occur in thehide.
Scratches: Healed scratch marks are evidence of the cow's unsheltered life.The fewer marks of this kind on the hide, the more expensive it is.
Urine Burns: Cows have never won any awards in hygiene, so it should come as no surprise that acidic urine burns are found on the legs of full hides. The affected area actually never has the chance to dry out during the cow's lifetime.
Back Bone: Natural furrows appear along the backbone of all hides. Again, due to the animal's physiology, they are your proof of a natural full grain hide.
Stretch Marks: Stretch marks appear in cowhide for the same reason they do in humans. The process of calving requires the stretching of their skin to accommodate the new calf. Nothing could be more natural.
Pledge of Quality Assurance
Leather is a product of nature; each hide has unique markings and a character all its own due to variance in shade and grain patterns (texture). No two hides are alike, distinctive marks such as abrasions, healed scars, barbed wire nicks, stretch marks and urine burns are acquired through out the life of the animal and are considered the hallmarks of a quality leather product. The Mikhail Darafeev pledge of quality assurance protects leather upholstery for five years against cracking, pealing or crocking (color transfer). This pledge is extended only to the original buyer and covers residential use only. This pledge does not cover fading, damage due to chemicals or exposure to sunlight and is not valid where there is evidence of heavy soiling abuse.