Have you considered buying animal hides? Cowhides, lambskins, shearlings and other fur varieties have been prominently featured in the old cave paintings of the past: since ancient times, these animal hides and furs have provided humans with an additional source of warmth – whether as a clothing option or as a carpet in the caves where humans used to live. Coupled with the fact that hides and furs are long-lasting and need little to no maintenance usually, they were often an ideal option – and today as well, that opinion is largely unchanged.
Thus many homeowners consider animal hides as a luxurious alternative to your average cheap rugs Melbourne: they often have an aesthetic that is hard for a mere carpet to reproduce. That being said, most people nowadays do know that their production can sometimes be unscrupulous, and as a result, people generally tend to steer away from buying them. However, if you are a responsible buyer, you can easily find ethically-sourced products. Below are some useful tips to consider if you plan to decorate your living room (or any other space in your home) with animal skins:
What are the options? – just like best natural round rug, animal hides also have a number of options available. The common distinction that is often made is between hides and furs, with the latter (together with shearling and lambskin) usually considered as the more luxurious option, but they look best in their natural state (i.e. dying them with other colours often has mixed results). On the other hand, cowhides are generally cheaper, but they are also more versatile: they can be easily stitched into a preferred size and shape, and generally look well with dyed colours as well.
What are the sources? – naturally, animal hides and furs come from animals (unless you wish to opt for synthetically-produced hides and furs). Cowhides, as the most prominent type of animal hide in use, come from beef cattle. Likewise, lambskins and other varieties that derive from animals being consumed for meat are often sourced from meat farms. Furs tend to come from fur farms – and you might want to avoid them if you are against animals being reared for fur. Keep in mind that most suppliers will gladly answer your questions about sourcing, and you can easily find out about their production methods and whether they are ethically done or not.
What about maintenance? – finally, you should know that taking care of animal skins is extremely easy: maintenance is almost unnecessary. Whilst professional cleaning can cost you a pretty penny, the usual cowhides can easily last for years with no maintenance whatsoever. Furthermore, animal skins and furs easily absorb dust and grime, and they usually tend to look better with each passing year (i.e. as they age).