The Unique Appeal Of A Shagreen Side Table

by | Jun 18, 2015 | Furniture

There are some design styles dating back centuries which surface again to be better than the original. This is certainly the case with the beautifully designed Shagreen side table designs which are becoming the latest in room décor accessories.

The new styles of Shagreen side table combine age-old looks with new materials, an interesting contrast in the ancient and very modern. The look and style is also minimalist and modern, but also works well in virtually any décor. Often paired with a metal base or table structure, the Shagreen side table top is the distinctive feature wh very much in demand today.

The History of Shagreen

Originally shagreen was made of a naturally rough rawhide or untanned hide, typically of a horse and more rarely of an onager. The onager which is an animal closely related to a horse found mostly in the Middle East and many parts of Asia.

The rough hide was sprinkled with hundreds of small hard seeds when it was still soft. Then, a cloth would be placed over the seeds and the seeds crushed into the leather. As the leather dried and formed around the seeds it shrunk slightly, allowing the seeds to be simply shaken off the surface.

The result was textured leather that was not slippery but was very durable. It was used in all types of coverings, including the hilts of swords used in fighting and ceremonial events.

Later in time, Louis XV considered shagreen made from the skins for stingrays, shark or dogfish as a perfect leather for elegance and luxury. Naturally textured, it soon because the hallmark of luxury and beauty.

Modern Shagreen

Today’s Shagreen side table styles may be made with a variety of different materials. Ray and shark skin is still a popular option, but there are beautiful faux shagreen items as well which are very beautiful and very realistic.

The beauty of a Shagreen side table is its versatility in design and neutral color. It can work with vibrant bold colors as well as with more subdued and cool types of décor and design elements.

Often combined with a lacquer base or a nickel or brass base, a Shagreen side table is unique and distinctive. Their textured top and soft, smooth feel are a contrast to the metal or lacquer base, providing a nice combination of differences all in one piece.

At Twentieth, we offer several Shagreen side table models by Scala Luxury. To see more of our collection visit us online at

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