Created by the most skilled craftsman, shagreen furniture requires experience and time to understand this unique material, because care and attention to detail are needed to produce shagreen furniture. A simplified version of the process is as follows:
In the first phase, molds are taken from a real stingray skin, this original skins can be used many many times, the material that is poured into the molds is a polyester-based resin that takes at least one day to set before it is ready to be removed and applied to the particular piece of furniture, once all applied the finishing process can begin.
There are a couple of furniture material out there that exudes elegance and sophistication. We’re talking about furniture reserved only for the rich and famous – for the people who value their money more than others.
Just imagine it, nobody will talk of a house with traditional and dreary furniture. It might become the butt of jokes. But when you pick something different, something rare, something that people can truly appreciate – that’s what the rich and famous are going for.
Aside from marble pieces, other types of furniture are popular with the rich and famous. Marble pieces look perfect in any backdrop, but it’s too masculine most of the time. Steel furniture looks strong, but it does not look fancy enough without great design. On the other hand, wood is undying and immaculate no matter how you look at it. The problem is wood is ubiquitous, and it does not excite people anymore.
When it comes to furniture, the material you choose is essential. Different materials have different properties that can affect the look and feel of your furniture. For example, marble is a luxurious material, but it can also be quite cold and stiff. Wood is a warm and inviting material, but it can also be quite heavy and difficult to move around.
When choosing a material for your furniture, it’s essential to think about what you want the furniture to achieve. If you’re looking for a piece that will make a statement, marble or steel might be a good choice. If you’re looking for something more timeless and classic, wood might be the better option.
Then there’s Shagreen. Shagreen is quite rare, and most people never even heard of it. Shagreen is not as flashy as other material, but it can create really exciting pieces that can pique the interest of even the pickiest of connoisseurs.
So what is Shagreen? Why is it an excellent material to use for furniture? What makes it unique? We’ll talk all about that in this article. Let’s start!
What is Shagreen?
Shagreen has a long history dating back to the 2nd century CE in China. It is a material that has been used by many cultures and countries throughout time until it is now commonly known as the “Shagreen” we know today.
The word Shagreen comes from Persian, meaning “Tough Skin.” The first mention of the material was back in Theophilus Presbyter’s 12th Century manuscript On Divers Arts, where he describes Shagreen as being made from skin or fish.
This rawhide consists of very thin, tough skin that usually comes from sharks. After drying out the skin, it was beaten with a steel trowel to soften it up before being cut into smaller pieces for handle covering or other purposes. Shagreen was often wrapped in gold foil to add a little more flair and prestige.
This type of rawhide was typically used for covering sword handles, dagger sheathes, and the bottom of shields to protect it from damages. It wasn’t until Louis XIV’s reign in France that Shagreen began using furniture. He commissioned Simon Lourdes, his cabinet maker, to create any furniture he wanted using Shagreen. The result was a stunning desk that is now on display in Versailles, showcasing this versatile material’s true capabilities.
Today, there are many types of Shagreen available worldwide, but they all have one thing in common: They are made from shark skin! These different varieties include stingray, bamboo, cowhide, and of course, the original form that is made from sharkskin.
Shagreen can have a very wide range of color combinations, making it an ideal material for many different types of furniture, including coffee tables, nightstands, desks, side tables, and sideboards. Given its diverse applications, it has been used by high-end furniture designers around the world to create luxury pieces sure to impress any guest!
What is Shagreen Made Of?
Shagreen is the skin of a Stingray which is cured, dyed, and finished with a patina much like leather is. Most of our valued customers who purchase our handmade Shagreen furniture often ask us, “What is Shagreen Made Of?”
In the past, Shagreen was initially used for decoration and practicality. Because of the stingray skin’s inherent rough or ribbed characteristics, it provided a helpful grip, making stingray hides useful for the handles of swords and daggers. Like leather, the hides could be finished and colored with a beautiful effect that sits perfectly with the texture of stingray skin.
The use of an actual Stingrays skin on furniture is not practical from not only an ecological point of view but also a material coverage aspect, furniture is quite large, and a stingray skin is relatively small; therefore, furniture makers use other base materials with the Stingray skin embossed upon them for example stingray embossed leather is used quite often.
The material we use here at Arin International is polyester resin. The process is as follows: natural Stingray skin is used as a mold that can be used multiple times, the liquid resin is poured into the mold and left to cure overnight, once cured the resin is soft and malleable, making it act much like leather, once the resin is pulled from the mold it is applied to the furniture piece was the coloring and patina finishing process begins.
Is Shagreen Great for Making Furniture?
There are some drawbacks to using Shagreen, though, so be aware before you start decorating your home with this exotic material. The biggest thing is its price. It can be pretty expensive because only one established producer is left in France who supplies all of Europe’s Shagreen.
Shagreen can also be quite challenging to handle. It is very thin easily rips under too much pressure or weight. This makes supplying your furniture a bit tough because the material comes in large pieces meaning you have to cut it yourself before applying it to your furniture. Without the proper knowledge, this can lead to improper gluing and application which can cause problems later down the road while using your piece!
But if done right, Shagreen’s durability alone might make up for some of its drawbacks. There are multiple types of Shagreen with different consistencies; some may be more fragile than others, but overall they’re all reasonably durable considering what material they are made from. You cannot expect Shagreen furniture to go through the same wear and tear that standard leather might, though.
If durability is a concern for you, there are ways around it too! Shagreen can be a bit harder to work with due to its thinness, but there are plenty of products out there from strong glues, tapes, and adhesives that make attaching shagreen pieces much more straightforward.
While it is true that Shagreen is a complex material to work with, it can produce outstanding products if worked on by experts. Most of the Shagreen furniture available in the market in the past are pretty expensive. This is because only a handful of artisans can use the material to make furniture. Luckily, that has changed over the past few years. Shagreen furniture is not being made in Vietnam, where the labor is cheap, and the skills are exemplary. In turn, companies such as Arin International has produced shagreen furniture from Vietnam over the past few years. Arin International takes pride in being one of the leading names in shagreen furniture production and exportation in Vietnam.
Arin International is a furniture manufacturer based in Vietnam. Arin employs hundreds of Vietnamese artisans known for their furniture-making skills. The team specializes in making Shagreen furniture and is known worldwide for it. While the quality is undoubtedly good, the price is competitive as well. This means Shagreen furniture is no longer reserved for wealthy people.
The Shagreen furniture manufactured by the team behind Arin gets exported to over 30 different countries worldwide. Arin International even accepts custom designs for their shagreen furniture.
A shagreen nightstand is a piece of furniture made from shagreen material. It is a small table that can store items such as books, magazines, or other small items. It is a perfect accessory piece in every bedroom that can elevate the room’s level of sophistication.
A nightstand is an often overlooked piece of furniture – usually the last thing we think about. Mainly because we rarely see how useful it is for us. A shagreen nightstand not only looks good, but it also serves a beautiful purpose. When you use Shagreen for a nightstand, it definitely will stand out.
Shagreen nightstands are a perfect highlight in an otherwise dull bedroom. If you are stuck with ordinary bedroom furniture, adding a shagreen nightstand will help make the rest of the more beautiful. Arin International has multiple shagreen nightstand designs you can choose from, and they can do custom work as well.
Shagreen Coffee Table
A shagreen coffee table is a table that is made from shagreen material. It is a table often used to place drinks or food on. It can also store items such as books, magazines, or other small items. A shagreen coffee table is a perfect accessory piece in every living room that can elevate the beauty of the space.
Shagreen coffee tables are usually quite expensive. This is because only a handful of artisans can use the material to make furniture. Luckily, that has changed over the past few years. Shagreen furniture is not being made in Vietnam, where the labor is cheap, and the skills are exemplary. In turn, companies such as Arin International has produced shagreen furniture from Vietnam over the past few years.
This particular item is an excellent addition to the office of an avid writer or at home for those who like to manage their schedules with ease. The shagreen desk allows for quick and easy access to all the essentials you need while working on your laptop or planning out tasks for the day ahead.
A shagreen desk is no different from other desks; it’s essentially just another type of furniture that supports your laptop or writing pad. What makes this one somewhat unique is the material used in its construction – Shagreen, which happens to be quite durable and stylish.
Shagreen Side Table
A side table is a small piece of furniture designed to be placed at the edge of any particular living space. They can be rectangular or round and are often used as end tables for couches, chairs, and sometimes even beds. A shagreen side table is no exception and what makes it unique is the use of the exotic material known as Shagreen. While it may seem like something that would only interest those who want things that stand out because they look different rather than serve a purpose or bring an aesthetic appeal to a room, don’t assume so! If you take time to find the right design for your home, you’ll discover how valuable, such an item can be – specifically in your bedroom.
Shagreen boxes are often ornate boxes with intricate designs painstakingly created using various types of lacerations. These boxes are typically made for royalty or people in roles requiring them to carry items that were important to them throughout their lives – weddings, engagements, graduations, etcetera.
It should be noted that Shagreen can also be used to make jewelry boxes – mostly pearl-encrusted ones! Shagreen is not typically sold on its own but instead crafted into something else. To buy shagreen boxes, you’d need to go to the manufacturer instead of finding someone who sells them by themselves.
Arin International can custom make shagreen boxes perfect for gifts or souvenirs. We can take your design into a reality with the help of our expert artisans.
A shagreen sideboard is a type of cabinet used as an alternative piece of furniture to hold drinks and food in dining rooms or other places where people sit around tables like conventions, weddings, etcetera. The sideboard will often be filled with different types of drinks – usually alcoholic beverages such as wine or champagne because these tend to be served at these sorts of events.
This particular item brings even more attention to the rest of the room rather than making it stand out on its own, unlike most nightstands, desks, or coffee/side tables. It can be placed in any room where there’s a dining table to suit the furniture better, so it is so commonly used for events such as parties and weddings as it brings more to the table than any regular sideboard.
A shagreen mirror is a beautiful type of mirror. It is often used as decoration to match the personality of their living space.
At first glance, Shagreen mirrors appear somewhat ordinary. Still, after observing for some time, one can see how fascinating it is, like looking at an abstract painting composed of natural materials. This is because Shagreen is a material that does not look amazing on your first look – if anything, it seems pretty ordinary.
A shagreen mirror is perfect for the main rooms in a house as it looks exquisite. Pair it with other shagreen furniture such as a table or an accessory like a shagreen soap dispenser. People will instantly feel a million dollars richer just by using them.
Most manufacturers do not make shagreen mirror, but Arin International does! We provide high-quality, classy, and unique pieces for your home that you cannot find anywhere else! This type of material is incredibly popular in the furniture market because it is made up of exotic materials which are hard to find.
Mostly our mirrors are plain mirrored glass although antique glass is also available as is eglomise mirrored glass which is the process of applying silver or gold leaf to the back of the glass to give a foggy antique effect.
A shagreen table is a type of table made from the exotic material known as Shagreen. This material is often used in furniture because it comprises a unique and hard-to-find combination of materials.
Shagreen tables are perfect for the main rooms in a house as they look really elegant. To complete the look, they can be paired with other shagreen furniture such as a mirror or an accessory like a shagreen soap dispenser.
Most manufacturers do not make shagreen tables, but Arin International does! We provide high-quality, classy, and unique pieces for your home that you cannot find anywhere else!
A shagreen bed is a type of bedroom furniture made from the kind of material called Shagreen. The use of shagreen beds is typically in bedrooms. However, if you have an aquarium or something similar in your room, it might be good to put one there because they tend to look very luxurious while adding some accent lighting that makes them seem more mesmerizing. This combination makes boring bedrooms into a place of luxury.
People should buy these shagreen beds for their bedroom because they look and feel elegant. They may not look that great at first, but they are one of a kind.
Arin International makes shagreen beds of varying designs and sizes for clients worldwide. We are also open to custom designs for clients who already know what kind of shagreen bed they want.
Faux Shagreen: What is it?
Faux Shagreen is a type of material made to look like the real thing, but it is not made from Shagreen. This material can be made from different materials such as wood, plastic, or metal.
The difference between faux Shagreen and regular Shagreen is that faux Shagreen is not made from Shagreen’s exotic material. Faux Shagreen is often used in furniture because it gives a look a unique and hard-to-find combination of materials but is still affordable and durable.
Faux Shagreen is also getting popular these days because most people see the harvesting of genuine Shagreen as exploitative. Every year, hundreds if not thousands of dogfishes, rays, or sharks are killed just for their skin. This rampant killing of sea creatures is unnecessary for some environmentalists because Shagreen is mainly used for decorative purposes only.
The rise of faux Shagreen is borne out of the public’s adoration for the material coupled with their love for mother nature. With faux Shagreen, you get the same look and feel of Shagreen but not the guilt that comes with harvesting the skin of animals.
Faux Shagreen Coffee Table
If you hunt for a coffee table that won’t break the bank but still looks great, then a faux shagreen coffee table is a great choice. A Faux Shagreen Coffee Table is a table made from a material that looks like Shagreen. This type of table is an excellent option for those who want the look of Shagreen but don’t want to pay the high price tag that comes with it.
Faux shagreen coffee tables come in different shapes and sizes, and Arin International can manufacture them for you.
Faux Shagreen Nightstand
Faux Shagreen Nightstands are pieces of furniture that look great but don’t cost a fortune. They are a great option if you want the look of Shagreen but don’t want to pay the high price. Faux Shagreen is also a lot more durable than genuine Shagreen, so it is a good option if you are looking for a piece of furniture that will last for a long time. Considering nightstands get a bit of a beating over time, faux Shagreen is a much better option than traditional shagreen nightstands.
Faux Shagreen Desk
Want the durability and strength of wood or other material but still want your desk to look gorgeous? A faux shagreen desk might be the best solution for you. Faux shagreen desks are desks made of material closely similar to regular Shagreen but with more durability. This ensures that the table will last for a long time, even if you use it daily.
We all know how much stress a desk can get from everyday use. If you choose to use regular Shagreen, the material will deteriorate in years and even months. By selecting a faux shagreen desk, you get the beauty of Shagreen, but it can also weather the storm of daily use.
Custom Shagreen furniture for a Hong Kong Project
Straight from the factory floor in Vietnam some of our Shagreen pieces for a project in Hong Kong. The items include a bar cabinet with a stainless steel frame and smoked glass shelves and desk also with stainless steel together with dressers and bedside tables.
All the items pictured are entering the final quality control area where our staff will follow a checklist of steps that must be passed before the next step can be taken in the quality control process, each product must pass all steps that are assigned to the individual products, once passed the QC stamp or sticker is applied and the product moves on to the packing stage.