Let’s take a moment to talk about leather. Guys love leather in their home the same way we love leather handbags, so if men and women both adore this luxe material, why is it that couples fight so frequently over leather furniture in the home? The issue with leather is its several connotations. The word may fill your head with images of motorcycle gangs, black-and-chrome bachelor pads, cowboy outfits or smoky and grim gentleman lounges. But think again. Done right, leather furniture is well suited for classic and contemporary designs alike, bringing a durable and strong yet butter soft and deluxe material into the interior design realm. Today on the Kuotes, we’re passing along some of our top tips for decorating with leather along with highlighting leather pieces we’re sure you’ll love.
1 – Balance Masculine & Feminine Properties
Too much leather can result in a look that’s cold, stark, or a little too “bachelor pad” for your family home. To remedy this, introduce a pleasing balance of textures. Something as simple as an accent pillow or plush throw blanket will give a nice contrast to leather’s smooth and sleek surface. You can also pair your leather pieces next to softer, more feminine-leaning pieces like a linen sofa or tufted rug to achieve a tactile blend that won’t read too “manly” or too “girly.”
“Something as simple as an accent pillow or plush throw blanket will give a nice contrast to leather’s smooth and sleek surface.”
2 – Use More Than Just Black Or Brown
Don’t get us wrong, we love a classic leather armchair in a warm, buttery brown. But if that look is too rustic or masculine for you, there are plenty of other options available! Modern dyeing and finishing techniques mean that the distinctive grains of high-quality leather are no longer lost when coloring, therefore more muted hues, like greys and neutrals, are now available. Grey tones are KKH favorite for leather pieces, but white, linen, and metallic colors like silver and bronze are also popular choices that really make a space stand out. You can also look for pieces with embossed hides that offer a more fashion forward look, such as faux ostrich, crocodile, or zebra.
3 – Dress It Up
One simple solution for balancing the masculine nature of leather furniture is to add embellishments to the piece itself. The slightest detail can elevate a “worn leather couch” into a stunning, expensive-looking sofa. Think of an armchair with nailhead trim, an ottoman or Chesterfield sofa with all-over tufting, a headboard with exposed stitching, or a leather-topped desk with gold tooling. Your man likes the function and you want the fashion, so why not have the best of both worlds?
Introduce chic, subtle leather into your pieces, like our Gretta coffee table.
Experiment with partial leather upholstery on your favorite frames.
4 – Leather’s Not Just For Sofas
We all know that a gorgeous leather sofa can be a showstopper, but this versatile material can work wonders in smaller accents as well. If he wants leather furniture but you’re not digging the big, masculine sofa, find some compromise in smaller pieces like the ottoman or occasional chair. At KKH, one of our favorite ways to use leather is also in decorative accessories like boxes, tables, pillows, and trays.
5 – Change Up the Silhouette
Part of the hesitance surrounding leather furniture comes from the typical silhouettes you’ve seen used over and over again. At KKH, we believe there is always room for these iconic pieces (like the leather Chesterfield), but you shouldn’t allow yourself to feel limited to these silhouettes. Several of our pieces can be custom made with leather upholstery, and you’ll find more and more modern designs on the site have begun to incorporate leather. Mixing a modern silhouette with such a tried and true material is a great way to bridge the gap between the old and the new.