AskDefine | Define suede

Dictionary Definition



1 leather with a napped surface
2 a fabric made to resemble suede leather [syn: suede cloth]

User Contributed Dictionary



(gants de) Suède, (gloves of) Sweden


  • /sweɪd/


  1. A type of soft leather, made from calfskin, with a brushed texture to resemble fabric, often used to make boots, clothing and fashion accessories.
  2. (modifying a noun and functioning as an adjective) Made of suede.


type of leather
made of suede
  • French: de suède, de cuir suédé, de daim

Extensive Definition

Suede is a type of leather with a napped finish. However, it can also refer to a similar napped or brushed finish on many kinds of fabrics. The term comes from the French "gants de Suède", which literally means "gloves of Sweden".
Suede leather is made from the under side of the skin, primarily lamb, although goat, pig, calf and deer are commonly used. Splits from thick hides of cow and deer are also sueded but due to the fiber nature have a shaggy nap. Because suede does not include the tough exterior skin layer, suede is less durable but softer than standard ("full-grain") leather. Its softness, thinness, and pliability make it suitable for clothing and delicate uses; suede was originally used for women's gloves. Suede leather is also popular in upholstery, shoes, bags, and other accessories, and as a lining for other leather products. Due to its textured nature and open pores, suede may become dirty and absorb liquids quickly. Suede should be cleaned as per manufacturer's directions. Modern tanning improvements have made waterproof and stain-proof suede leather available.
Suede leather cord is a popular trim, lacing, and jewelry material.
Suede fabrics are manufactured with a brushed or napped finish, resembling suede leather. Ultrasuede is a trademarked term for a microfiber plush with a hand resembling the softest suede, but which is more durable, and can be made resistant to liquid, stains, and crushing. It is commonly used in upholstery and fine accessories, or in clothing and shoes. Persons who enjoy suede's texture but who prefer a non-animal product, or an easier-care fabric, find Ultrasuede an expensive but luxurious alternative.
Microsuede is a newly popular microfiber knit blend fabric; it has a soft finish, but is easily distinguishable from actual suede leather. It has a great deal of stretch, and is very popular in upholstery as well as garments. Microsuede is less durable than suede leather but is commonly found in accessories and especially shoes.
Sueded silk, sueded cotton and similar sueded fabrics are brushed, sanded or chemically treated for extra softness. 'Suede' yarns are generally thick and plush, intending to resemble suede leather cord.


suede in German: Veloursleder
suede in French: Suède (matériau)
suede in Korean: 스웨이드
suede in Dutch: Suède
suede in Polish: Zamsz
suede in Swedish: Mocka (läderkvalitet)
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