There it was: faux leather so good it looked just like the real thing: varying shades of rich brown, buttery (if vaguely plastic-y) feel and nice bounce-back. The best part was that the couch was beautiful but a fraction of what the leather one would cost. With rambunctious kids, two undisciplined dogs and cats that liked perching on the back of couches, it seemed like a great investment five-ish years ago. And it was.
We spent many a happy evening on that couch. It held up beautifully through movie nights and drinks after dinner parties. It cleaned up easily, no tragic stains to remedy and no special conditioners to apply. It maintained its look and gave my living room a stately air.
It was this past spring when the tiniest little bubble appeared on the most-used cushion on its right. Then another. Then, in a symphony of planned destruction, all of a sudden they were everywhere, bubbles forming into little flaps of brown, then peeling off like an Irishman’s skin after a day at the beach. At first, I was sure my kids were behind it, peeling pieces of the couch away in vandalous glee. But then I noticed that any time I sat on the couch with any bare skin exposed, little pieces of the couch came away with me. They started showing up everywhere.
The couch looked like crap.
Then, recently, I had to set up a new office at home wired in to the wall instead of wireless and I had to scrounge up an old, forgotten office chair from a spare room. I can’t even remember where I originally got it, but I’m pretty sure it was a hand-me-down. It looked good enough until I noticed little pieces of it sticking to me and dropping on my pristine, just-refinished-last-year floors. The damn thing was peeling just like the couch.
So here I am in the market for something real.
The moral of this story is that things that are faux may look good for a time. They may even imitate the real thing satisfactorily. For a while. But, eventually, like all things fake, they will cause mayhem and maybe even stick to the backs of your thighs.
Hold out for the real thing, people. That’s what I learned from my faux leather.