What is Suede?

Suede is a type of leather with a soft, napped surface.


Suede is a luxurious material popular in both fashion and interior design. It is made from the underside of the animal skin, which is softer and more pliable than the outer skin layer. The surface of suede is distinctively soft, velvety, and has a slight nap to it. This texture is achieved through a series of treatments and sanding processes that give suede its unique feel.

In interior design, suede is used for its rich texture and depth, adding a touch of elegance to any space. It can be found in a variety of applications, including upholstery for furniture, wall coverings, and accessories like pillows and throws. Suede adds a level of sophistication and comfort to interiors, making it a popular choice for living rooms, bedrooms, and other areas seeking an upscale ambiance.

While suede is celebrated for its beauty and texture, it requires careful maintenance. It can be prone to staining and may require professional cleaning. Nonetheless, with proper care, suede items can remain beautiful and functional for many years, contributing significantly to the aesthetic and tactile experience of an interior space.


Suede is often seen in high-end residential and boutique commercial settings, where designers aim to create a luxurious atmosphere. From suede upholstered sofas and chairs in living areas to suede-covered panels in bedroom headboards or even textured suede wallpapers, its application is quite versatile. Additionally, smaller suede elements like cushion covers or throws can be used to introduce this material into a space subtly.


  • Is suede real leather?

    Yes, suede is a type of real leather. It's made by processing the softer underside of the animal hide to create its signature soft, napped surface.

  • Can suede be used in any interior design style?

    While suede is often associated with luxury and sophistication, it can be integrated into a variety of interior design styles including modern, traditional, eclectic, and even minimalistic spaces when used thoughtfully.

  • How do you care for suede in an interior setting?

    Suede should be regularly dusted with a soft brush, and spills should be gently blotted up immediately. Professional cleaning is recommended for tougher stains or annual maintenance.

  • Is suede sustainable?

    Sustainability of suede depends on sourcing and production practices. There are eco-friendly options, such as sustainably sourced or recycled suede, that minimize environmental impact.

Practical Application

When incorporating suede into your interior design, consider the room's usages and sunlight exposure, since suede can fade over time. Opt for darker colors in high-traffic areas to minimize the appearance of wear. Use specialty suede protectants to enhance resistance against spills and stains, thereby extending the life of your suede items.