If you are at the point of choosing a fabric for your new church furniture, that means you’re likely nearing completion on the large phases of your new church construction, renovation or redesign. Congratulations! But don’t rush through this final choice. Though the entire process can be overwhelming, keep your meticulous design decision making strong through to the end. If your church makeover process has been a long one, it can be hard to keep going, especially through the small details. Make sure you’ve got a great committee by your side to help you trudge through the hard parts and fly through the fun parts.

You’ve probably spent a lot of time and considerable effort researching your new church furniture. You know by now that quality and durability are important in this type of investment. You also know that furniture flexibility is crucial if you want to maximize your space. And you’ve likely decided to go with chairs over pews. Maybe you’ve created a list that includes a nice mix of different kinds of chairs so that your church is equipped for every possible occasion and event.

But what should you clad your new investment in to make them look great, feel comfortable, and last for a very long time?

Here are some tips to help you decide which fabric to choose for your new church furnishings.

1) Focus on durability.

It’s easy to get lost in the world of design and aesthetics. But you really can’t afford to choose appearance over durability. Fabric is one of those things that can be very sturdy or very delicate. You definitely don’t want the latter in your church or you’ll be forking out money in the near future to frequently repair or even replace the upholstery.

Choose a fabric that is tested for pulling and weight. Can your fabric selection handle thousands of patrons settling in and rubbing up against the fabric, time and time again? Imagine all of the bumping, poking, and spills that the chairs will have to endure. The small children climbing on, and even over, the chairs; the larger adults sitting for hours at a time. Consider how the chairs will be stored. Is it possible that the fabric might snag on a corner of something while being transported?

For most fabric types, the high traffic factor of a community church means that they just won’t work. If you’re going to choose a fabric from the selection that your preferred chair company offers, ask for fabric swatches so that you can feel the durability of the samples. Ask about their testing system and which fabrics are made for high traffic use. Go with the fabric that you know will be the best return on your investment.

2) Consider style.

But don’t stop at function. While durability is ultra-important, so is style. After all, you don’t sink a sizeable investment into redesigning a building if style weren’t a crucial factor in your overall strategic plan for congregation growth. You know that how a church feels is an important reason that people come back every week. You aim to create an ambiance that fosters spirituality and a warm community feeling.

On the practical side, while it might be tempting to go for a trendy looking fabric, hold back and take the time to analyze your choices. As disappointing as it may be, the flashy patterns of today will someday become outdated. And often that outdating process happens quite quickly. Your chair investment should be something that lasts for years, so you really don’t have the luxury of needing to replace them again in just a short time. Choose something practical.

You don’t have to settle for completely boring, however. There are plenty of great patterns and styles that are timeless.

3) Pick a timeless color.

Just like styles come and go, so do trending colors. If you’ve decided on a bolder look for your space, you might consider how to express that boldness in a way that isn’t costly down the road. You might settle on choosing bold accents that are more affordable to replace. For example, paint an accent wall, include decorative art and other elements that express your big style, and find smaller ways to give the space a little color “pop.”

It’s generally not a smart plan to choose to incorporate these loud colors in big investment pieces such as chairs. You might decide to rebrand and completely redecorate in a few years, and reupholstering can get quite expensive. You don’t have to settle for a boring color, but you should choose something that will go with many different styles and colors throughout the years.

Look at the fabric swatches from the company you’re considering and compare the swatches in the church space. Analyze them under various lights and at different times of the day. You should choose something that feels warm, inviting, and comforting. It should also match your overall design goals. Your furniture is what makes people feel comfortable enough to stay. Your congregation and ministry team are what make them want to come back.

When it comes to picking furniture fabric, it can be a headache and your design committee might be full of disagreement. After all, fabric tastes can be quite personal and differ from person-to-person. But if you follow the tips in this guide, you can easily eliminate many fabric choices that wouldn’t be a good fit for an active church. By choosing a durable fabric that has a timeless style and an inviting (yet neutral) color, you’ll ensure that your renovation and redesign investment is one that will pay off for years to come.

When you’ve created a design aesthetic that everyone agrees will help to grow your congregation, it’s time to pick your fabric. For excellent quality chairs and an appealing fabric selection, reach out to Advantage Church Chairs. We offer the best chairs for community churches and excellent customer service to help you pick the perfect selection. Find us on the internet at advantagechurchchairs.com and by calling (855) 294-0532.