Guide to Upholstery Jargon: The Martindale Test
With a multitude fabrics in various designs, colours and patterns, picking which fabric works with your scheme can be an exciting but also overwhelming experience! And with all those codes, numbers and terms that reside on the back of samples, it can seem like there’s a lot to learn. When I started, I didn't know my FR code from my rub count.. But have no fear! To follow are a few post on certain terms that might bewilder you. First up, the Martindale Test.
The Martindale Test: Also know as the Rub Test
This is a test that measures the durability and suitability of fabrics. During the test, the fabric is put under a certain amount of tension. Little round pads of wire or hardened wool are then rubbed repeatedly in a circular motion until the fabric shows a considerable amount of visible wear and tear. The tests results in a number called the rub count, which essentially is the amount of rubs the fabric can withstand before wearing through.
The higher the rub count, the heavier duty the fabric and the more durable it is.
under 10,000 Rub Count: Suitable for Decorative furnishings, e.g. cushions, trimmings etc.
10,000-15,000 Rub Count: Suitable for Light Domestic use, e.g. furniture that is used only on occasion
15,000-20,000 Rub Count: Suitable for General Domestic use, e.g. the main furniture that is used in your home, however, not advised for furniture with moving parts like recliners
25,000-30,000 Rub Count: Suitable for Heavy Domestic use e.g. furniture with moving parts, and light commercial use.
30,000 Plus Rub Count: Suitable for Heavy Duty Commercial use and domestic use,that will incur a lot of traffic.
Hopefully you now have a much better idea of what kind of fabric you'll need for your own specific project! Stay tuned for more Upholstery Jargon Busters still to come!