Designer tip: Fabrics perfect for furry family members

Even the palest colors of upholstery are suitable for pets when they're actually performance fabrics. Photos courtesy Karen Giffel Interior Design.

Keeping a clean house is no small task, especially when you have four-legged housemates dragging in fur, dirt and who knows what else on a daily basis. And while it’s easy to rid the floors or carpet of unwanted doggy droppings, your furniture isn’t always as forgiving. That’s why we spoke with design specialists Karen Giffel of Karen Giffel Interior Design¬†and Ashlyn Elofson of Trends By Design to find out their suggestions for pet-friendly fabrics that are easy to maintain and even easier to love.

“I always recommend performance fabric applications to best suit the pet-friendly lifestyle many of us lead,” explains Giffel. “A favorite performance fabric of mine is Crypton; it’s got all the ‘proofs’ covered, which makes for a stress-free environment.”

Performance fabrics are designed to withstand wear and tear, while also being simple to clean and long lasting. According to Elofson, performance fabrics originally felt and looked like outdoor fabrics, but now it is hard to tell the difference between a standard plush velvet fabric and a durable performance velvet.

“Performance fabrics have the soft feel that you and your pets want for cuddling, with the lasting durability to hold up over time,” says Elofson. “Clients are shocked to see how blue Gatorade, coffee and even red wine beads up when spilled on the fabric and can easily be blotted up without leaving a stain.”


For more information on performance fabrics or how to create the perfect pet-friendly space, contact Karen Giffel or Ashlyn Elofson.