5 Myths About Alcantara Fabric Debunked!
1. Alcantara Material Is Manufactured Worldwide
All Alcantara fabric is 100% made and produced in Italy. Every single metre of Alcantara comes from the Alcantara production plant in Nera Montoro, nestled in the Umbrian hills, just a stone’s throw from Terni. From here, Alcantara material travels to every corner of the world. With exports representing 90% of turnover, Alcantara has established itself abroad as an ambassador of authentic Made in Italy quality.
Made in Italy products are created with advanced technology without sacrificing attention to detail, and staying true to values of traditional craftsmanship. This aspect serves as a badge of recognition abroad, and makes the products synonymous with quality, passion and creativity; products admired throughout the world. Made in Italy is founded upon original ideas, work and people.
The production of Alcantara fabric relies upon partnerships with small and medium companies within the country to render it entirely, authentically and strictly Italian. It has its origins in this country, with its history of fashion, design, inventions and characters that have made their mark over time - icons of tradition and leaders in excellence.
Alcantara is constantly committed to developing new perspectives, through its Research and Development Centre – one of the largest in the textile sector in Europe. There, the company’s professionals work in its laboratories, exploring new fields of application in order to develop and improve the material and the production processes, with a focus on sustainable innovation. The modern Applications Development Centre is an integral part of the R&D Centre: it is a set of structures, technologies and skills that enable the Company to deliver specific application solutions. The internal prototypes made at this centre allow Alcantara to provide an immediate response to customer needs during the design and production of special series of products.
2. Alcantara Fabric is a Type of Leather
Alcantara is a suede-like material made from polyester and polyurethane and is completely different from leather. Alcantara is the perfect wrapping material for those who are vegan, vegetarian, or for anyone who does not want to use animal products: Alcantara is completely animal-free. While Alcantara is often referred to as "Alcantara leather", Alcantara isn't a type of leather.
3. Alcantara Fabric is Difficult to Clean
Alcantara fabric is fantastically easy and simple to clean, which is why it is often used for automotive seating, dashboard trim and headliners by many high-end OEM automotive suppliers.
Alcantara is widely used for steering wheel covers in many performance-oriented vehicles. Louis Vuitton also uses Alcantara linings in many of its bags: it appears in the collaboration with Takashi Murakami under the creative direction of fashion designer Marc Jacobs, wherein the white Multicolor Monogram bags have a bright fuchsia Alcantara lining. Here are some tips for cleaning alcantara fabric:
General Instructions for Removing Alcantara Stains
If your Alcantara fabric was affected by localized stains, use Alcantara-specific cleaning products. If you do not have Alcantara-specific cleaning products, you can clean the auto upholstery using the following steps:
- Act immediately - within 30 minutes - and begin treating the stain from the outside edge towards the centre to prevent the stain from spreading.
- Never pour a cleaning product directly onto Alcantara fabric
- Before removing the stain, remove any of the substance that has fallen on the auto upholstery. If it is a thick substance such as yoghurt or jam, use a spoon or a plastic spatula. If it is liquid, use non-printed absorbent paper or a sponge.
- Avoid rubbing to prevent the stain from spreading or going deep into the material.
- Use a white cloth or a well-wrung sponge for the removal of the stains.
- If you use a sponge, rinse it in clean water and wring it well between each wipe.
Removing Water-soluble Alcantara Stains
It is recommended that you use the Alcantara-specific cleaning products to remove water-soluble stains. However, if you do not have these cleaning products, you can use water, lemon juice, or pure ethyl alcohol (found in liquors) and follow the instructions below:
- Stains from fruit juice, jam, jelly, syrup, ketchup: use lukewarm water, rinse by dabbing with clean water.
- Blood, egg, excrement, urine: use cold water: avoid warm water because it makes these substances coagulate. Rinse by dabbing with clean water.
- Stains from liquors, alcoholic beverages, wine, beer, coke and tea: use lukewarm water. If the colour mark remains, treat it with lemon juice and then rinse it well.
- Stains from indelible pencil, cocoa, chocolate, pastry with cream or chocolate, ice-cream, mustard: use lukewarm water and rinse by dabbing with clean water.
- Stains from vinegar, hair gel, tomato sauce, coffee with sugar: use lemon juice and then wipe with lukewarm water. Rinse by dabbing with clean water.
Removing Alcantara Stains That Are Not Soluble in Water
It is recommended that you use specific Alcantara-cleaning products to remove stains that are not soluble in water. If you do not have these Alcantara cleaning solutions, you can use water, lemon juice or pure ethyl alcohol (found in liquors) and follow the instructions below.
- Stains from lipstick, foundation, mascara, eye-shadow, perfume, shoe polish, oil and grease in general, grass stains and felt tips in general (including the indelible kind): rub with ethyl alcohol, then with water, and rinse.
- Grass stains and felt tips: these are quite difficult to remove, especially on light colours, so it is necessary to act as soon as possible in order to prevent them from becoming too “dry”.
- Stains from chewing-gum and wax: put a plastic bag full of ice on the stain. When the material hardens, remove the pieces and then treat with ethyl alcohol.
Repeat the treatments described above as often as necessary. Even the stains that are not soluble in water often require to be treated afterwards with water.
Old Stains of Unknown Origin
Before all else, treat the fabric with lukewarm water. Then, rinse by dabbing it with clean water. If you see that the stain begins to dissolve in the water, repeat the treatment as often as necessary. Finally, let the stain dry and, if necessary, treat with ethyl alcohol.
4. Alcantara Fabric Has Few Colour or Textile Options
At Hydes Leather, we carry hundreds of textile and colour variants from which you can choose. These options include:
- Alcantara Auto Cover
- Alcantara Auto Panel
- Alcantara Perforation
- Alcantara Multilayer
- Alcantara EXO
- Alcantara Aviation
We offer different Alcantara fabric options so you can select a colour or textile best suited for your vehicle or personality! Alcantara is also great for embroidery projects, and also lasers. The pattern possibilities are endless.
5. Alcantara Fabric Produces a Lot of Waste and Carbon Dioxide
Alcantara is committed to achieving sustainability from the production process to the disposal of their products. Moreover, Alcantara S.p.A.a allocates over 50% of its global investments to activities and initiatives related to sustainability. Over time, sustainability has become a core guiding principle for the organization. Additionally, back in 2009 Alcantara S.p.A. achieved an ambitious goal for carbon neutrality: a net balance of zero CO2 emissions. Alcantara Sp.A. also obtained the much-coveted Carbon Neutrality certification from one of the strictest and most rigorous international certification bodies, TÜV SÜD. Alcantara measures, reduces and offsets 100% of all carbon emissions attributable both to company activities and to the product - from cradle to grave. The residual emissions which cannot yet be eliminated by current technologies are offset each year through the company’s participation in green offsetting projects sponsored by the United Nations, designed to promote the use of renewable energy in the poorest and most disadvantaged areas of the world.