Fabric Factsheet

Office Seating Fabric Requirements

Choosing the appropriate fabric for your business seating can sometimes be confusing. This Factsheet aims to make tell you what you need to know without hours of research so that selecting your fabric is a more straightforward process. It covers the standard fabrics generally found on office furniture, although many more exist.

Upholstery fabric on office seating must be durable and hardwearing to satisfy the needs of modern businesses and will need to comply with the regualtions for your type of business. The following table gives a summary of the main specifications for fabrics available on our chairs and the details follow.

We are constantly adding to our fabric ranges to keep pace with our customers needs and now offer antibacterial healthcare fabrics and sustainable fabrics as part of our standard ranges. There is a gradual move towards more sustainable fabrics and manufacturers are beginning to make some of the more popular fabrics more environmentally friendly as they investigate new manufacturing processes.

The Summary
Renewable, Compostable, Recycled and Climate Neutral Fabrics

 Fabric  Fabric Type  Composition*  Flammability*  Strength*  Likely Usage
Urban Plus  Textured (Recycled) 100% Recycled Polyester Medium Hazard      (crib 5)  100,000 rubs

Severe Office     Public Areas

 Oxygen Wool Crepe    (Climate Neutral) 90% Wool        10% Polyamide 

Low Hazard         (Medium Hazard       FR if treated -       must be specified before ordering) 

100,000 rubs

Severe Office     Public Areas 

Smarty Plus  Pattern   (Climate Neutral) 90% Pure New Wool              10% Nylon  Medium Hazard      (Crib 5) 200,000 rubs  Severe Office     Public Areas 
Intervene Texture  Textured (Recycled)  100% Recycled Polyester  Medium Hazard     (Crib 5)  100,000 rubs Infection control areas 
Sketch Plus Pattern   (Climate Neutral)  95% Pure New Wool               5% Polyamide  Medium Hazard      (Crib 5) 80,000 rubs  General Office   Public Areas



 Fabric Type




    Likely Usage 

  100% Pyratex
  Med Hazard
     (Crib 5)
 100% Polyester
  Low Hazard
    30% Wool
  70% Polyolfin
  Low Hazard
    30% Wool
  Low Hazard
Mainline Plus
    67% Wool 33% FR Viscose blend
  Medium Hazard (Crib 5)
   75,000 rubs
     24 hour, 
 severe office,
 public areas,
 public sector
   100% Xtreme 
  Med Hazard
     (Crib 5)
General office,
  public areas,
  public sector
  Med Hazard(Crib 5)

 Flamblend  Tweed

 37% Wool 25% Viscose 30% FR  Modacrylic 8% Nylon

 Med Hazard
100,000 rubs   
severe office,
public areas,
public sector
Treated for stain repellence
24/7       Crepe   

33% Wool   50% Polyamide 10% Visil 7% Viscose

Med Hazard
    (Crib 5)
Severe office, 24 hour, public  areas, public sector
  Bali     Crepe        100%


 Low Hazard 40,000 rubs

General office

Vinyls and Healthcare Fabrics

See also the Healthcare fabric factsheet.

Intervene Plain & Pattern  Crepe  100% Xtreme FR Medium Hazard

100,000 rubs

Contract Healthcare. (Waterproof, anti-microbial, stain repellent, urine proof, bleach cleanable)
Intervene Texture  Textured Tweed

 84% Recycled Polyester,

16% Cationic Polyester

Medium Hazard 100,000 rubs Contract Healthcare. (Waterproof, anti-microbial, stain repellent, urine proof, bleach cleanable)
Intervene Marl Linen Look  100 Recycled Polyester Medium Hazard 50,000 rubs Contract Healthcare. (Waterproof, anti-microbial, stain repellent, urine proof, bleach cleanable)
Just Colour Vinyl PVC/Cotton Medium Hazard 100,000 rubs Contract Vinyl. Suitable for Infection Control Areas (NaDCC Compatible)
Chieftain Vinyl

87% PVC

13% Cotton

Medium Hazard Contract Vinyl & High risk Infection Areas. (Waterproof, anti-microbial - counteracts C.Diff, MRSA, stain resistant, urine proof, disinfectable) 
Ambla Vinyl Medium Hazard    Contract Vinyl. (Waterproof, anti-microbial, stain resistant, urine proof, disinfectable) NaDCC compatible. 
*See below for more details

As computer screens all differ, the fabric colours shown on the website can only be an approximation and will depend on your display settings. If you are trying to make a specific colour match, please do not hesitate to contact us for a fabric card.

The Details



Fabrics are available in a range of natural and man-made fibres and the proportion of these contributes to the comfort, flammability and durability of the fabric.


In broad terms the higher the wool content the more comfortable the fabric should be. Wool is absorbent and breathes and therefore should be cooler in summer and warmer in winter. Man-made fibres are cheaper to produce and tend to be less absorbent which usually makes them more stain resistant, easier to clean and hard wearing. Many fabrics will have a mix of both to balance the benefits of each.


Flammability is a major factor in specifying a fabric for your furniture and our fabrics have all been tested to one or both of the following British Standards.

The tests for both BS5852 and BS7176 are similar and products certified to BS5852 (Low Hazard) are considered to meet BS7176 (but not vice versa)

BS5852 - Primarily used to classify domestic furniture. (within this test there are 8 ignition sources, but only the two below need concern us here.)

    BS5852 197
(EN1021-2:1994)         (Cigarette & Match) 
Ignition Source 1 or 2                              
Crib 1           
Fabrics passing this test are specified for low fire
 risk areas only.
BS5852 1990
Section 4         Ignition Source 5
Crib 5

       Fabrics passing this test are 
     more commonly specified for 
       areas with a higher fire-risk.
        Many fabrics within this 
        category have been treated to
      increase their fire-retardancy 
             or are inherently fire
     retardant. (Often denoted by FR)

 BS7176 1995 - Primarily used to classify non-domestic furniture






 High Hazard

 V. High 


  This test recommends 
  areas of application for
the fabrics tested. These
   fall into the following 
    hazard categories.
    NB your insurance or
  Fire Officer may specify
    a higher specification.
  The specifications here 
    are for guidance only.
 Day Centres
    Places of 
   Pubs & Bars
  accomodation in
  certain hospital 
 Certain hostels  


All our seating is made with CMHR (combustion-modified high resilience) foam as required by regulations.

Fabric Strength

This is usually quoted as a measure of Martindale Cycles (the test used to measure durability) or as an abraison resistance. The higher the number of cycles (rubs) the fabric has been tested to, the more durable the fabric is likely to be.


Concern about recycling and sustainability has encouraged some manufacturers to factor this into their product design and manufacturing processes. There are an increasing number of fabrics using recycled materials which are becoming more popular e.g. Urban Plus. Some we have on the website but many others are available on request.

Consumers can meet environmental policies and targets by choosing longer lasting fabrics such as 24/7, which need to be replaced less often, or pure wool fabrics which are renewable, recyclable and fully compostable or climate neutral.

Fabric Care

Phoenix, Pyra, Stirling and Advantage fabrics should be vacuumed regularly, wiped clean with a damp cloth or cleaned with a proprietary uphostery shampoo if necessary. In addition, Xtreme Plus is also washable to 60o and 24/7 should be vacuumed regularly, wiped with a damp cloth or professionally dry cleaned.

Specialist Fabrics

There are very many specialist fabrics including anti-bacterial healthcare fabrics and vinyls on the market and while we do not offer all these fabrics as standard on the website, we are happy to arrange for made to order items to be covered in specialist fabrics. Just contact us with your requirements.

You should also know......

that office furniture purchased for a home office must meet the terms of UK fire safety regulations which cover domestic settings.
Please note that the information contained in this Factsheet is for guidance only. You should always seek information from your fire officer or insurer where necessary.


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