Ridetheducks.com is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more

The Best Marine Upholstery Fabrics for 2024

best marine upholstery fabric

The best marine upholstery fabric can do wonders on the visual appeal of your boat. It can also help in keeping your boat clean which makes it a wise investment.

However, with plenty of options out there and the lack of proper information on selecting boat upholstery material, the decision-making process can be quite challenging. If this is your case, then you don’t have to worry.

In this article, we have shortlisted the top-rated marine upholstery fabric in the market to help you know which ones are the best. We have also thrown in a comprehensive buying guide to make things a lot easier for you.

Best Marine Upholstery Fabric Reviews

1. Bry-Tech Marine1 Vinyl Upholstery Fabric

bry-tech marine1 vinyl upholstery fabric

We’re starting with a great commercial-grade product from Bry-Tech. This product is made of vinyl, the most widely-used boat upholstery fabric. It’s regarded as a very durable and flexible material, so you’ll never go wrong with this product.

What I love about this product is that it comes in a wide range of solid colors which is ideal for minimalists. The fabrics don’t have patterns so it’s easy to fit into any interior decorations. Also, they both have cool and warm colors which are all perfect choices for whatever weather or climate your area has.

Bry-Tech’s marine grade upholstery fabric is fit for both indoor and outdoor use. I find this convenient because it means it can be used for boats, vehicles, and homes. For outdoor use, it’s infused with UV inhibitors so its color will remain vibrant for years.

The feature I love the most about this product is its moisture-resistant build. This means you can just enjoy sailing and having fun without worrying about water splashes. No matter the weather, your boat will remain free from mold and mildew if you use this product. All these features can ensure that you can have more rides and less maintenance work with your boat.

This product is ideal for boat seats or couches. Their fabrics have different surface textures and patterns so you have plenty of options. A leather-look is a usual go-to for boat cushions, and this product has plenty of those in various colors.

Once you’ve chosen the fabric you want, you can easily install it anywhere by stapling or sewing it in place. Vinyl is soft enough for a needle and staple wire but tough enough to endure constant use. This means that this marine-grade and the commercial-grade product are a great deal to grab.

The only thing I find inconvenient about this product is its smell when used indoors. I suggest you use this on areas exposed to the sun or air. If you have a boat with a cabin beneath the deck, this product isn’t the best choice for its seats.

What We Like
  • Marine-grade; ideal for boats or any water vessel
  • Durable and flexible
  • Resistant to UV rays
  • Resistant to moisture, molds, and mildew
  • Comes in a variety of solid colors
What We Don’t Like
  • Smells when used indoors/underneath the cabin

Overall, I highly recommend this product. In minimizes maintenance work, allowing you to enjoy your boat more. Just use it for the outdoors, and it’d be perfect!

2. VViViD Blue Faux Leather Marine Vinyl Fabric

vvivid blue faux leather marine vinyl fabric

Nothing says ocean than a rich, blue color which is the color that VViVuD’s product comes in. This product is a great marine fabric for boats and an ideal upholstery fabric for couch cushions, monoblocs, benches, etc. Just because of its various applications alone, I’m loving this product already.

This marine-grade vinyl fabric is made of very durable and flexible vinyl material. It feels and looks like natural leather which gives that simple yet elegant look to your boat. I love that this product is made durable without compromising its looks. With this, your boat is going to look fine for a long time.

What I admire most about this product is the film that is layered on top of the vinyl. It acts like a wax that makes anything it covers waterproof and UV-resistant. In other words, this heavy-duty film can withstand any weather, making your boat rides unstoppable come rain or shine.

This product is also resistant to stains and scratches. It can protect your boat seats and cushions from dirt buildup and damage in case someone gets a little clumsy. You can easily clean it using a dump cloth. Needless to say, this product can take your worries away when you and your family decide to have fun in the boat.

This amazing marine upholstery material can take care of your boat for you, reducing its need for maintenance. Investing in this product means saving time and money in the long run which, for me, is extremely beneficial. You can spend more time sailing than cleaning with VViViD!

What I dislike about this product is that it’s a bit challenging to install because it doesn’t stick easily to surfaces. If it doesn’t latch on the first try, you’ll have glue residue to clean. So, you must utilize a strong adhesive and clean the surface thoroughly before pressing on this fabric.

What We Like
  • Durable and flexible
  • Resistant to UV light
  • Waterproof
  • Resistant to stains and scratches
  • Have various applications
What We Don’t Like
  • Inconvenient to install

Given its features and benefits, I highly recommend this product for your boat and other indoor and outdoor surfaces. If you find a great adhesive, this product should flawlessly perform its job for you. Worry less and enjoy more by having this marine vinyl protect your boat from the weather and the water. Trust me; it’s worth it.

3. Marine Vinyl Fabric

marine vinyl fabric

Third on our list is also made of the best boat upholstery material, vinyl. It has a faux but natural-looking leather finish that appears and feels like natural leather. It comes in various solid colors that can serve everyone’s aesthetic tastes. It’s another product that I and other minimalists love for its clean, classic, and elegant look.

Beyond its look, this product can protect any surface from UV rays for 500+ hours. That’s beauty, heavy-duty capacity, and durability (because it’s made of viny) in one product. It allows you to protect your boat seats in a style that I absolutely love. Its UV inhibitors also make this product ideal for purses, outdoor booths, tables, chairs, etc.

Due to its marine-grade build, this vinyl fabric is completely resistant to water; not a drop goes through it. So, you don’t have to worry about splashes anymore no matter how rough the boat ride gets. Consequently, it prevents mold and mildews from building up. Its smooth surface also repels stains so you can easily clean it with a damp cloth.

As a result, this product will reduce cleaning time and delay maintenance work, freeing up more of your time. Its material and features make it durable enough to withstand constant beating so it’ll last long, extending your boat’s life.

This product is also easy to install. It comes in rolls, but because it’s made of 100% PVC, you won’t see any folds once you unroll it. It’ll be ready to apply once you receive it which is very convenient. A heavy-duty sewing machine is enough to secure it in place.

My only complaint about this product is it’s a bit clingy and sticky. You can feel your clothes getting pulled a little when you stand up from your seat. You have to wipe the product a few times to remove its stickiness.

What We Like
  • Heavy-duty UV protection
  • Waterproof
  • Resistant to mold and mildew
  • Durable and flexible
  • Has various applications
What We Don’t Like
  • Sticky

Overall, I’d recommend this product to you. After wiping off the stickiness, this product should be in perfect condition to protect any surface you put it on. Get ready to spend more amazing moments as you sail worry-free with Marine Vinyl Fabric!

4. Plastex Marine Vinyl Fabric

plastex marine vinyl fabric

The next marine upholstery fabric on this list is by Plastex, and it comes in glorious, vibrant colors. It’s made of marine vinyl and 100% PVC fabric which is ideal for your boat and other water vessels.

This product’s material makes it very durable and flexible enough to withstand frequent usage without tearing apart. You can use this material for a long time so you can save money with it in the long run. It’s a wise investment if you use it on vehicles and any materials that you want to last.

I love the various features this product has. This marine-grade fabric can protect boats from the sunlight for more than 500 hours. I love this feature because it means the colors will not fade easily and I can have long sailing times. Any part of your boat at risk of deteriorating due to the harmful UV rays can finally be protected.

This product is also resistant to water. Therefore, it prevents mold and mildews from building up no matter how frequent you use your boat. Additionally, it also repels stains, so cleaning it is a breeze. Basically, this product has everything you need from a marine fabric to help extend your boat’s life.

This product resembles the look and texture of leather, so it’s going to withstand the elements in style. Plus, it also comes with features that help delay maintenance work and major cleanup me. This product is an excellent fabric for boat seats, purses, headboards, and car upholstery. It takes away the nightmare brought by spills and splashes from exciting, bumpy rides in land and water.

The only downside of this product is that it creases easily when folded. You must install it carefully so it doesn’t fold when you lay some weight on it. Also, roll any excess and store it standing up to keep it crease-free.

What We Like
  • Durable and flexible
  • Has UV inhibitors
  • Waterproof
  • Resists mold, mildew, and stains
  • Comes in plenty of solid colors
What We Don’t Like
  • Folds or creases easily

I confidently encourage you to buy this boat seat fabric. When installed and kept properly, this product can’t do you any wrong. It applies to vehicles and furniture, and it has features that can extend the life of anything it protects.

5. VViViD White Faux Leather Marine Vinyl Fabric

vvivid white faux leather marine vinyl fabric

This ViViD product is a great fabric for boat cushions. It’s made of 100% PVC material that feels like soft, natural leather for maximum comfort. It’s extremely durable and flexible, giving long-lasting protection for your boat seats.

I love that this product has excellent features such as UV inhibitors. This feature gives protection against the sun so the fabric won’t lose its color and brilliance. It’s also water-resistant, so this product can remain untorn even if exposed to extreme weather conditions. Therefore, it’s ideal for both indoor and outdoor use.

Because it’s marine-grade, it’s specifically effective against saltwater and other marine deposits or elements. It’s the perfect protection against splashes for any water vessel for fishing or just leisure sailing.

What I admire most about this product is its resistance to cuts and scratches. This gives great relief to boat owners with people on board who tend to have too much fun. This anti-scratch feature protects your seats from guests who have pointy items or accessories with them.

To top it all off, this VViViD product is resistant to stains. So, if you cover your boat and car seats with this, your fear of spillage will be over. This is great if you have kids and clumsy adults around or you live near rough roads and waters. You can finally go through bumpy drives with fewer worries in mind.

It’s easy to clean. A damp cloth should be enough to remove any debris and liquid that has beaded on the surface. With all the features of this product, your boat seat will no longer need major clean-ups and maintenance work.

You can easily install this product by sewing, stapling, or gluing it down. A carpet glue should do the trick. Use the one for outdoor application.

The only negative this product has is it doesn’t come with adhesive so you must buy your own. Also, it’s white so when it deteriorates after a long time, the stains will be noticeable right away.

What We Like
  • Comfortable, durable, and long-lasting
  • Has UV inhibitors
  • Waterproof
  • Resistant to stains, cuts, and scratches
  • Has various applications
What We Don’t Like
  • Doesn’t come with adhesive

This product is the best fabric for boat cushions I found so far. Its cons are negligible because there are alternatives to adhesives. Also, you can benefit from it for a long time before so it provides so much value for your money.

6. Bry-Tech Marine1 Pleated Vinyl Upholstery Fabric

bry-tech marine1 pleated vinyl upholstery fabric

This product is made of the best marine vinyl fabric material that comes in many brilliant colors. The fabric is pleated for that extra sass and elegance that lifts its aesthetic quality. This is an excellent product to protect and accessorize your boat.

Bry-Tech has yet again introduced a marine-grade product that protects your boat seats from splashes of saltwater. It repels moisture, beading it on its surface, and marine deposits so you can clean it with a wet cloth. I love this feature because it lets me spend more time enjoying the boat instead of cleaning it.

It’s also resistant to UV rays so its color won’t fade easily, and the material won’t crack under intense heat. All these features make sure that your boat will sail with its seats well-protected, come rain or shine.

This product is also commercial-grade, so it’s durable and able to withstand constant and long-term use. Anything covered by this product is guaranteed to last longer than it should. Use this product on any item you wish to keep for life.

It’s also easy to sew or staple onto chairs, tables, etc. Given all these features, this product is also ideal for land vehicles (cars, trailers, campers) and outdoor areas. With it being weatherproof and stain-resistant, you can finally have more fun time and less cleaning time.

Even though I love the pleats, I also dislike it at the same time. It’s not deep but can still trap dirt. Eventually, you may see dirt lining the crevices if you don’t always wipe it properly.

What We Like
  • Durable and long-lasting
  • UV-resistant; won’t fade and crack easily
  • Waterproof
  • Stain-resistant
  • Has various colors and applications
What We Don’t Like
  • The pleats may trap dirt

Regardless of its tendency to trap dirt, I still highly recommend this product. You can just simply wipe the fabric properly every time so the dirt doesn’t build up. Overall, it’s a great product to protect your priced seats, cushions, and furniture.

7. AquaGuard Marine Vinyl Fabric

aquaguard marine vinyl fabric

If you’re looking for upholstery vinyl that’s specifically designed for marine environments, then this product from Aquaguard is a great choice. Due to its high-quality construction and enhanced durability, it’s perfect for use not just for marine upholstery but also for any project that requires heavy-duty marine vinyl.

I love how it can withstand the harsh environment of the outdoors, protecting my surfaces from the elements, and making them last longer. Contributing to its durability are the waterproof and anti-UV properties that enable it to remain the same, rain or shine.

Aside from this, I also found that its spider weave backing further enhances its durability as it allows it to withstand the wear and tear from constant use as well as the harsh outdoor elements.

Moreover, this marine vinyl also has a high abrasion or double rub rating, getting a score of 100,000+. This is due to its .95mm vinyl face that allows it to last as long as it does despite the constant exposure to the marine environment.

What’s more, it comes in an extensive range of colors, allowing you to choose the best one that fits your boat’s décor.

However, the only downside I found was that its thick nature makes it difficult to work with at times.

What We Like
  • Highly durable construction
  • Provides long-lasting protection
  • Waterproof
  • Has anti-UV properties for long-lasting durability
  • Has a high abrasion rating
  • Comes in a wide variety of colors
What We Don’t Like
  • Its thickness can be somewhat difficult to work with

Despite this, it’s still an overall great product for marine upholstery as it provides durability and longevity that can withstand the harsh outdoors and marine environment.

8. Mybecca Marine Vinyl Faux Leather Fabric

mybecca marine vinyl faux leather fabric

For those who want a classic white leather appearance for their marine upholstery, you might want to check out this faux leather fabric from Mybecca.

Made from high-quality vinyl, this product mimics the appearance of leather, giving your boat upholstery a touch of classic elegance that only leather provides. However, leather doesn’t work well with the harsh marine environment which is why I found this faux leather version the next best thing.

Aside from its appearance, I love how it’s water-resistant as well, making it perfect to serve as a marine upholstery fabric because it can withstand the moisture it’s constantly exposed to. Moreover, since it’s faux leather rather than actual leather, it’s considered very animal-friendly as well.

It’s also quite durable and long-lasting, allowing it to bear the constant exposure to the elements like sunlight, water, and more. The surface is very easy to clean as well, making it a low-maintenance option for busy boat owners.

Although this one is white, I also love how there are other colors available that allow me to mix and match as I please to match my boat’s chosen aesthetic. Its appearance is also high-quality enough that you can mistake it for actual leather rather than vinyl.

It’s also fairly easy to clean so there’s no need to worry about maintaining its appearance, allowing boat owners to keep its pristine appearance with less effort.

However, what I disliked about this is that it can also be difficult to work with, especially manually due to its thickness. It also lacks UV protection so it can still damage the fabric with long-term exposure.

What We Like
  • Has a faux leather look that adds class to boat upholstery
  • Water-resistant so it can be used for boat surfaces
  • Provides longevity and durability
  • Available in different colors
What We Don’t Like
  • Can be difficult to work with, especially when done manually
  • Lack of UV protection

Despite these downsides, it’s overall a great product for marine upholstery as it provides durability and longevity. Moreover, it has a classy appearance that can also stand the test of time.

9. VViViD Bycast65 Correct-Grain Marine Vinyl Fabric

vvivid bycast65 correct-grain marine vinyl fabric

If you want the more classic leather look, then this faux leather marine vinyl fabric from VviViD is the ideal option for you. With its soft leather-like texture, it will have you thinking that you’re using real leather instead of vinyl.

Aside from its almost authentic appearance and feel, this marine vinyl fabric is considered suitable for heavy-duty uses like boat upholstery. It’s also completely weatherproof so you don’t have to worry about it being exposed to harsh weather conditions.

Moreover, it’s waterproof and UV-resistant so exposure to the harsh elements won’t affect its durability and long-lasting service. It’s also grime- and scratch-resistant so preserving its stunning appearance is no issue.

Additionally, it’s a low-maintenance type of fabric so cleaning it is a breeze. I love how I only need a damp cloth to restore its pristine look and its waterproof property making it resistant to stains caused by spills.

This leatherette vinyl fabric is perfect not just for marine use but also for various other uses, making it a versatile choice for many. It comes in 2 neutral colors too, adding a classic touch of elegance to boat upholstery.

However, what I didn’t like is that it lacks the flexibility of actual leather so it can be a bit difficult to work with.

What We Like
  • Features a real leather-like appearance and feel
  • Highly durable, meant for heavy-duty projects
  • Weatherproof, waterproof, and UV-resistant
  • Grime- and scratch-resistant as well
  • Cleaning and maintenance of this fabric is a breeze
  • Offers increased versatility for different projects
What We Don’t Like
  • Can be difficult to work with

Nevertheless, considering this isn’t actual leather, its lack of flexibility is a minor issue. Overall, this vinyl upholstery fabric is perfect if you want the classic elegance of leather but want the overall durability and low-maintenance quality of vinyl.

10. Mybecca Black Marine Upholstery Vinyl Fabric

mybecca black marine upholstery vinyl fabric

Next on the list is another vinyl upholstery fabric from Mybecca which features a leather-like appearance and texture as well. At first glance, you’ll actually think it’s real leather with its realistic leather-like appearance and even its texture.

However, unlike leather, this upholstery fabric offers the increased durability and longevity that only vinyl could provide. It offers high resistance to both weather and water, making it perfect for environments exposed to a lot of moisture like boats.

Moreover, it offers high resistance to UV rays as well so you don’t have to worry about the harsh sunlight compromising the integrity of your upholstery. Additionally, it’s grime, dirt, and scratch-resistant as well, allowing you to preserve its pristine appearance with ease.

Its surface is made from 100% vinyl fabric with a backing constructed out of 100% polyester. This allows it to handle heavy-duty environments like the one in boats as it can withstand the harsh weather conditions of the outdoors.

Aside from this, I love how it’s easy to clean as well, making it another low-maintenance option for those looking for upholstery fabric that is similar to real leather.

However, what I only disliked about this material is that it’s prone to creasing so if I fold it, it leaves a mark.

What We Like
  • Weather- and waterproof
  • Highly resistant to UV rays
  • Provides increased resistance to dirt, grime, and scratches
  • Offers a realistic leather-like appearance
  • Highly durable and long-lasting construction
  • Perfect for marine environments
What We Don’t Like
  • Material is prone to creasing

Nonetheless, it’s a minor issue and it doesn’t affect the product’s overall quality so I’d say it’s still a great option for those who want a more manageable fabric for their boat upholstery or projects.

11. Plastex Fabrics Vinyl Yellow Fabric

plastex fabrics vinyl yellow fabric

If you’re looking for a piece of more versatile vinyl fabric, then this one from Plastex can be a great option. It features a bright lemon yellow appearance that can help brighten up your marine upholstery.

What I love about it is that it’s soft and flexible, allowing me to easily cut and work with it compared to other vinyl fabrics.

Moreover, it’s machine-washable so I don’t have to worry about the yellow fabric staining as I can simply remove it from my boat surfaces and pop it in the washing machine. Aside from this, because it’s made from 100% vinyl, it’s fairly water-resistant as well, perfect for marine environments like boats.

However, what I dislike about it is that it’s not really marine-grade vinyl so it doesn’t have other protective features like scratch-, dirt-, and weatherproof as well as protection against harsh UV rays. As such, it might not last as long as marine-grade vinyl fabrics.

What We Like
  • Flexible and easy to work with
  • Machine-washable
  • Made from 100% vinyl
  • Water-resistant
What We Don’t Like

Not specifically designed for marine environments

Nevertheless, if you’re looking for something versatile rather than something specific to marine environments, then this vinyl fabric can be a great option for you.

12. VViViD Grey Faux Leather Marine Vinyl Fabric

vvivid grey faux leather marine vinyl fabric

Last on the list is this weatherproof marine vinyl fabric from VViViD. This fabric features a leather-like appearance and texture but is made from 100% marine-grade vinyl, thereby, making it a suitable option for boat upholstery.

As the name suggests, it features a weatherproof construction that allows it to withstand the harsh outdoor conditions, especially the ones most boats are subjected to. Because of this, it’s a highly durable fabric that can be used for any heavy-duty use, particularly for boats.

Aside from this, I love how completely waterproof it is, allowing it to preserve its structural integrity despite being constantly exposed to moisture and the elements. Moreover, I love how it features UV-resistance, a feature that helps maintain its appearance and integrity.

This allows you to enjoy your marine upholstery for a longer time and with its scratch- and dirt-resistant properties, you can enjoy its classy and elegant appearance as well.

Furthermore, it’s also a low-maintenance type of fabric so you don’t have to worry about having to scrub it heavily to remove tough dirt and stains.

The only downside I found with this is that the polyester mesh backing isn’t as sturdy as I’d hoped.

What We Like
  • Highly durable marine-grade fabric
  • Waterproof and weatherproof
  • Resistant to UV rays, dirt, and grime
  • Low-maintenance fabric that can easily be cleaned
  • Perfect for heavy-duty use and harsh outdoor conditions
What We Don’t Like
  • Backing could be a bit sturdier

Despite the backing not as durable, this marine-grade vinyl fabric offers a high level of durability and a longer lifespan while providing you with the classy and elegant look of leather. This makes it one of the top marine upholstery fabric on the market.

Who is This for?

best fabric for boat cushions

Marine upholstery fabric is for boat owners who are looking for a boat seat cover material to protect and improve their boats’ visual appearance. It is also for those looking for boat interior upholstery ideas that don’t require frequent maintenance and cleaning. There are many factors that come into play when selecting an upholstery fabric, but this easy-to-follow upholstery fabric guide will help you in making the best decision.

Factors to Consider When Buying a Marine Upholstery Fabric

Now that you have read the product reviews, the next step in finding the best marine vinyl fabric is to know the different features to consider. Here are the critical features to take note of when picking a marine upholstery fabric:


The most important consideration when choosing a boat interior upholstery fabric is the material. There are three common types of marine upholstery fabric materials: acrylic, mesh, and vinyl.

Acrylic upholstery is made of laminated fabric to add durability, making it a compatible fabric for boats. This type of fabric is waterproof and fire-resistant as well. However, its major downside is that it is not very versatile. It is also a very hard material to work with if you plan to put the upholstery DIY style.

Another popular boat upholstery fabric is mesh. Among the other options, this is the most visually appealing choice. It is made of PVC which is a water-resistant and durable material. You also get plenty of choices in terms of designs. However, it can be quite expensive compared to the other options.

Vinyl is also a common boat seat upholstery material, and I would say that it is my personal preference. This is because the vinyl fabric is an affordable choice. Unlike acrylic, it is versatile, and there is a decent number of options available for various designs.

There are two types of vinyl marine upholstery fabric that you should know about. They are:

Expanded Vinyl

Expanded vinyl, also known as polyvinyl chloride, is best used on boat seats. This material is resistant to mold and mildew, and it is not easily damaged if you wish to add antimicrobial chemicals. It is very affordable too.

Vinyl and Polyester Composite

Meanwhile, the vinyl and polyester composite is a combination of vinyl and polyester. This enables this material to hug the furniture’s frame or surface tightly, making it look more seamless and clean. Just like expanded vinyl, this is also resistant to mold and mildew.


In case you don’t know it yet, there are standard grades for fabric material. These are:


Lightweight fabrics are ordinary clothes that are not suitable for boats unless you plan to use them as a boat seat fabric. Even then, you are still at risk of mold and mildew problems because people might sit directly on the seats after taking a quick dip on the water.


Marine-grade fabric is the most suitable type of material for both the interior and exterior of your boat. This is because these are specially designed to protect your boat from typical problems that fabrics might be subjected to when used on interior and exterior surfaces.

Commercial Grade

You can also consider using a commercial-grade sailboat upholstery fabric because it’s durable and water-resistant just like marine-grade fabric. However, their major differences are texture and thickness. Commercial grade fabrics are typically 1/8-inch thick, allowing them to have a more foam-like texture.

The grades that you should consider when choosing a marine upholstery fabric is between marine-grade and commercial grade. If you want a thicker and more bouncy fabric, the commercial-grade is a good choice even if you would only use a minimal cushion. However, if you have budget constraints, there are affordable marine-grade options available out there.

Water resistance

Remember that boats will be in the water most of the time. People coming in and out will also be more likely to get wet, so it is vital to pick a water-resistant material for boat seats.

Most marine upholstery fabric brands are upfront about the water-resistance of their product. In fact, they use it as a selling point when marketing, so it wouldn’t be too difficult to identify whether it is water-resistant or not.

However, you should also know the difference between waterproof and water-resistant labels. Waterproof means that no water will penetrate the fabric at all costs while water-resistant simply means it is resistant to water to a certain extent.

Ideally, you want to choose waterproof fabric materials because they tend to be more long-lasting, especially with a boat’s environment. If you do pick a water-resistant variant, check first how water resistant the fabric is before making a final decision.


Another important feature to consider is whether the fabric for boat seats is weatherproof or not. This is very critical, especially for fabrics that will be installed on the boat’s exterior. Do not confuse weatherproof with water resistance and waterproof because it is entirely different.

This feature is focused on the fabric’s capacity to withstand varying weather conditions such as heavy rains and extreme heat. Marine upholstery fabrics are prone to discoloration and thread damage when they are not weatherproof.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Using a Marine Upholstery Fabric

best place to buy upholstery fabric

Just like anything in the world, marine upholstery fabric for boat cushions has advantages and disadvantages. For full transparency, we wouldn’t be concluding this article without presenting it to you. Here are the major advantages of using boat cushion fabric:


Design Aesthetics

The best fabric for boat cushions can make a boat look more luxurious. It can also help you get the type of design and style you want by playing with different fabric texture and colors. Furthermore, you can also use marine upholstery fabric to cover eyesores such as exposed speakers or minor dents and damages.


Aside from the visual benefits, marine upholstery fabric also helps protect the chairs and walls of boats. Marine vinyl upholstery fabric protects these boat parts from corrosion and deterioration caused by the ever-changing weather and other marine elements.

Lesser Maintenance

Marine upholstery fabrics are very easy to clean. All you need to do is wipe or pressure wash the surface, and it will be cleaned in a matter of seconds. Most marine upholstery fabrics are also long-lasting so you will not need to do reupholstery for a couple of years.


These types of fabric are mold and mildew resistant. You can also add antimicrobial chemicals on the fabrics without the fear of damaging them.


Difficult installation

Unless you are confident with your handyman skills, I do not suggest installing your marine upholstery fabric on your own because it can be quite complex. You need to know how to cut, glue, or sew the fabric on the intended surface and make it look good.

Added Cost

Although there are marine upholstery fabrics that are affordable, they are still considerably expensive, especially if you plan to cover your boat’s interior and exterior.

Frequently Asked Questions


What is Marine Upholstery Fabric?

Marine grade upholstery fabric is specially designed to withstand the harsh environment of the open waters. It is used to cover furniture on the boat such as seats and other parts. It is also used to add style and design to elevate the visual appeal of a boat.

What is the Most Trustworthy Marine Upholstery Material?

Many will say that the best boat material upholstery is vinyl. Marine-grade vinyl is resistant to mold and mildew. It is also flexible so it can be easily installed on furniture, and it is very economical.

However, since “best” is a subjective word, you can also consider acrylic and mesh. Both have their advantages and disadvantages.

How to Set Up and Use Marine Upholstery Fabric?

Setting up and using marine upholstery will require excellent sewing skills. If you have this, then good for you; however, it is best to leave the installation to the professionals if you don’t.

Upholstery companies will measure the dimension of the furniture or area where the fabric will be placed. They will then cut the fabric and tailor it according to the measured specification. After that, tailors will install cushions underneath to give the surface a soft and more luxurious feel before covering it with fabric.

Don’t worry about the cushions on the boat seat material getting wet because marine grade fabrics are usually waterproof.

How to Care and Clean Marine Upholstery Fabric?

Depending on the type of boat interior fabric that you choose, the care and cleaning processes might differ. If you are using vinyl marine fabric for boats, you can simply wipe it from time to time to prevent dirt and grime accumulation.

If you notice discoloration, you can use marine vinyl cleaners. These types of cleaners are also designed to add a layer of protection to the vinyl fabric.

However, it is important to avoid using any type of cleaners that contains bleach. This will thin and discolor your fabric. Furthermore, avoid using abrasive brushes and towels when wiping the fabric surface.

Which is Better: Waterproof or Water-Resistant Marine Upholstery Fabric?

When choosing your marine upholstery material, it is important to know whether it is waterproof or water-resistant since these are different classifications.

When the fabric claims that it is waterproof, it means that it does not allow any fluid to pass through. Meanwhile, when it is labeled as water-resistant, it means that it is designed to not easily be penetrated by water.

Obviously, water-resistant fabrics will not make the cut as a marine upholstery fabric because boats are exposed to water constantly, so you should only choose among fabrics labeled as waterproof.

Can I do DIY Boat Upholstery?

Yes, you can perform a do it yourself marine upholstery project since no rule says otherwise. However, you need to be extra careful when cutting the fabric and putting it on the boat furniture or surfaces to avoid unpleasant visual outcomes.

If you are planning to DIY your boat’s upholstery, make sure that you have all the marine upholstery supplies necessary such as super glue, scissors, and cushions. If you have a sewing machine at home, sewing the fabric will give it a cleaner and more elegant look.

Where to Buy Marine Upholstery Fabric?

The best place to buy upholstery fabric is in fabric stores, general shops, hardware stores, or online. It is a fairly accessible material, so it wouldn’t be difficult to source.

However, if you want convenience and good deals, I recommend buying it online from trusted retailers. They offer promos and discounts, unlike in brick and mortar stores. Brands such as Sunbrella Marine Fabric, AquaGuard Fabric, and Bry-tech Marine Fabric are available online. However, the downside is that you need to wait for it to be delivered to you.

If there is a wholesale; near me for marine upholstery fabric, then that is also an excellent place to buy the material. You are sure to get big discounts, especially when you buy in bulk.


The products mentioned in the review can fit various needs and specifications while still considering the important features. Hopefully, you find this article helpful in your quest to find the best marine upholstery fabric.

Regardless of what fabric you choose, as long as it is made of a durable material with the right type of grade and water resistance levels and weatherproofing, you are making an excellent choice.

5/5 - (14 votes)

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top