Tips and Guides

Building 101: Choosing the Right Textiles for Your Home (Part 1)

What fabric goes with which room? RL's interior designers give pro secrets


The living room is one of the most public areas in your house, and your fabrics should be able to withstand the heavy traffic of people, as well as the wear-and- tear from daily sittings, kids, and even pets. So choose heavy gauge fabrics for upholstery, such as heavy damask, canvas, chenille, tweed, and brush twill for sofas and armchairs. Lighter fabrics such as cotton chintz or even silk can be used for more delicate furniture pieces that don’t get used often, like occasional chairs and side chairs. 

Styling by Dagny Madamba and Issa Villar. Photographed by Miguel Nacianceno (setup) and Paolo Feliciano (moodboard).

Read the original article ("Fab Fabrics") in the September 2013 issue of Real Living Magazine. Download your digital copy of Real Living on the Real Living App now! Log on to for more details. 

The Fabrics
  1. Trendy Terrace Lake, P695/ meter, Townes, Inc.
  2. Lemon Chrome Bubble from Uptown Collection, P1,925/yard, Larry’s Curtain & Upholstery Supply Inc
  3. Chevron Pillowcase, P950, Sifra Interiors and Objects
  4. Owl, P270, The Nathouse
  5. Felton Terrace Flint, P795/meter, Townes, Inc.
  6. Hedda Pillowcase, find similar at Mobler
  7. Red Gingham Cloth, find similar at Townes, Inc.

Make your upholstered pieces last longer by choosing the right fabric and by heeding these tips.

  1. Locate your pieces properly. The location of your seating furniture may also affect the wear and tear of fabric. Upholstered furniture situated under direct sunlight may easily fade, and everyday use may wear out the fabric immediately. Avoid placing furniture near the window, or use thick, durable fabrics for your upholstery.
  2. Get textiles that are easy to clean. Cotton, cotton- blend, and leather are examples of natural fabrics that are easy to maintain, while microfiber, nylon, and acrylic are three popular synthetic fabrics used in upholstery.
  3. When re-upholstering, check the fabric grade. Grade “A” textiles are less expensive, while “F” ones are pricey. Variables factored in grading textiles include intricacy of weave, construction, and fiber content. Also consider fabric strength; choose at least 15,000 double rubs for everyday seating furniture. The higher the double rub, the more durable it is.  
  4. Use a fabric protector. Keep your upholstery in tip- toe shape with spray- on fabric protector like 3M’s Scotchgard Fabric and Upholstery Protector (available at major hardware stores). Such products repel liquids and block stains without damaging the fabric. 
The Products

DecoLiving Manila Lux CalloArea Rug, P26,415, Home Matters

Yellow Chevron Pillow Cover, P950, Sifra Interiors and Pbjects

Striped Pillow, P795, Rustan’s Department Store

Red Table Lamp, P8,995, Dimensione

Tarni Black Table, P9,995, Dimensione

Pink Patterned Pillow, part of a sofa set, (not seen), Home Matters

Yellow Sofa, P48,500, Home Matters

Origami Inspired Giraffe Couple, P5,245, Home Matters

*Prices are subject to change.

To view a list of stores and suppliers, click here.


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