Choosing upholstery for furniture in Florida poses some unique decorating challenges. Not only do the pieces have to stand the normal wear and tear of family life, but the color and texture have to mesh with the Florida lifestyle. Smooth fabrics are the general rule, as months of humidity and strong sunlight can play havoc with ordinary fabrics, while tougher textiles often look too dark and heavy for a light and airy Jacksonville environment.

Whether you choose to use leather furniture or a woven textile, your upholstery needs to be a lot tougher than it looks.

Cotton Fabrics

Cotton and other natural fabrics such as hemp come in a wide variety of textures, making is possible to find one to fit any environment. Choose canvas, duck, or smooth denim for durable furniture cushions that will also feel cool and airy. Add to the breezy feel by choosing a fabric in light neutral colors such as sand or gray. No matter what type of fabric you choose, make sure you opt for a stain resistant coating to help keep it clean through life’s inevitable accidents.

Leather Furniture

If you experienced inexpensive leather furniture, you might think it’s the worst choice possible for a tropical environment, but you’d be mistaken. The problem is that cheap fabrics and leathers will never feel good on your skin, whereas higher quality ones always cushion and welcome your touch. High quality leather furniture feels cool to the touch in warm summer weather, and its smooth surface never scorches you like vinyl or microfiber suede. High end leather furniture can cost quite a bit more than comparable fabric pieces, but it will last much longer.

Artificial Fabrics

While natural fabrics should be the rule inside your home, Jacksonville residents live outside during a good part of the year. Patios, pool enclosures, and decks are another room, and these are often used for family gatherings and outdoor entertainment. Between extreme Florida sun and storms and the wear and tear on outdoor furniture from families and friends, the best choice for this upholstery is woven synthetic fabrics. For a cool, airy feeling, choose a high quality woven cloth such as nylon. It won’t have to be brought inside during storms, and its bright colors won’t fade in the sun.

With better quality woven synthetics, if you find yourself replacing your outdoor cushions, it will likely be to redecorate and not because they wore out.