Azle is our cat—and a darling little feline she is. She’s sleek, beautiful, and affectionate. She’s has the most endearing little squeak instead of a meow. She is also amazingly athletic and loves to jump from the floor to the back of our barstools (a full 52-inches vertical leap!) and perch there proudly as if to say, “Did you see that? I’m awesome, aren’t I?”
Yes, she’s awesome. And we love her. We must – otherwise we would have skinned her alive for what she did to our brand new sofa.
Perhaps as part of her flexibility training for that Olympic feline high jump event she hopes to enter one day, Azle enjoys nothing more than a long, deep backstretch. Unfortunately for us, this involved her digging her claws into our brand new American made sofa for an indulgent series of picks and scratches that left the sofa looking like road kill.
Scratching posts be-damned, nothing beat the loose woven fabric on this piece of furniture for getting the kinks out. So for months, we sat helplessly by while our darling cat destroyed the fabric on one end of the sofa.
We weren’t going to buy a new sofa. That would be foolish and wasteful given that it is a quality piece of furniture in otherwise great condition. And we weren’t going to banish Azle from the house. Aside from her ability to jump really high, I’m pretty sure she lacks the proper survival instincts to become an outdoor cat. The poor thing can’t even muster decent meow. Besides, when she isn’t destroying furniture, she is a very beloved part of our family.
So the challenge was to find an upholstery material that Azle couldn’t (or at least wouldn’t) tear up.
Now, in a perfect Greenspiration Home world this would have been an American woven fabric, from organically harvested raw materials, by a company that is conscious about its carbon footprint. It would also be a soft to the touch, stain resistant and, most importantly, totally unappealing to cats. It also needed to be within our budget.
Did such a fabric exist? Uh…no.
The Poly Purr-fect Solution
What does exist, though, is a 100% polyester microfiber fabric that looks and feels like suede, repels liquid, and best of all doesn’t appeal to cats in the least. A local eco-home décor shop recommended this product, and though I had to wait a ridiculously long time for my order to arrive, I couldn’t be more pleased with how the fabric performs.
Now, I know any product that begins with the four letters “p-o-l-y” are likely to draw frowns from the green purists. But, to me, a busy working mom with a messy family who loves their cats, this easy to clean microfiber fabric proved the ideal solution. After all, there’s nothing green or sustainable about replacing or reupholstering your sofa every six months.
I was also told (though I could not confirm on my own) that the product I ordered is made in Georgia. If I find out otherwise, trust me, I’ll let you know.
We like this material much better than the previous fabric. It’s softer, prettier, and liquids bead up on it like rain on a freshly waxed car. One quick wipe and whatever you spilled is gone.
The only one in the family that probably isn’t pleased is Azle. As predicted by the shop owner, she doesn’t “dig” the microfiber. She now limits her stretching and scratching routine to an old, primitive wooden bench where her scratch marks only add to the character.