Marine Canvas and Upholstry

Marine Canvas – How to choose the right one for your boat

January 2, 2020

Marine Canvas


Hamburger and fries, Tom and Jerry, peanut butter and jelly, history has shown us plenty of famous pairings. When it comes to boating, there is none more notable than marine canvas and Yachts. After all, marine canvas can be found in nearly every single element of your boat.


Your Bimini boat top is made of canvas. The curtains found in the cockpit area are also made of marine fabric. The same goes for the steering station cover as well as the yacht upholstery. There is just no denying the fact that marine canvas plays a huge role in the boating world.


But for the uninitiated, let’s first answer the question: what is marine fabric?


Well, marine fabric is material that is mainly used for seafaring. The fabric is made of cotton duck, which has been treated to repel water, thus making it into a pretty strong cotton canvas. While cotton duck can be found in different items such as sneakers, marine fabric is made primarily to suit aquatic purposes like say, Bimini boat tops that provide shade from the searing heat of the sun and yacht upholstery.


To give you a brief history of the word canvas, many historians say that it comes from the Arabic word used to describe cannabis, since back in ancient times, canvas used to be made of hemp, which was a common material used in China in 3000 BC. However, as the years passed, hemp was eventually switched up and replaced by linen. These days, conventional canvas is now made from cotton, which has grown in popularity primarily because it is considerably lighter compared to linen. As the size of sails increased, it became evidently clear that linen was just too cumbersome, which then, paved the way for cotton canvas to enter the picture.


Now, most modern canvas is made from cotton. Cotton has become widely popular because it is more lightweight than linen. As sail size grew, linen became too heavy to be practical. This is how cotton canvas was adopted into the sailing industry.

And while synthetic fibers are also now being used as sails, a lot of boat enthusiasts still turn to cotton canvas to fulfill their boating essentials, especially when it comes to protecting their prized boats. Marine canvas is mainly used to provide protection from harmful UV rays, facilitate better air circulation and protect sails.


To help you choose the best marine canvas, here are some useful tips that you should consider before making a purchase:

What are the Ideal Fabrics?

There are three that you should seriously consider: Sunbrella, Stamoid and SeaMark.

Sunbrella is an acrylic material that has been solution-dyed to help it retain color, resist shrinking as well as stretching. Although this kind of material is not entirely waterproof, it can be cleaned rather easily and is very resistant to UV rays. You also have your pick of different colors.


Stamoid is made of polyester that has been coated with vinyl. It is able to resist abrasion, very easy to clean up, very resistant to UV rays but not as colorfast when compared to other materials. 


And finally, Seamark is made of acrylic that has also been coated with vinyl. It provides excellent protection from UV rays, is also abrasion-proof and is low maintenance. One drawback though, is it is heavier than other kinds of marine canvas.

When is the Best Time to install new  Marine Canvas interiors or exteriors to your boat?

Canvas manufacturers are usually very busy during the spring and fall. So, if you can wait, you should try and place your order during the summertime when canvas workers aren’t as loaded with orders.

If you truly want the best marine canvas for your boat, you should go and check out Tip Top Canvas and Upholstery, which is the top marine canvas, upholstery fabricator, and yacht interior design resource in Ft. Lauderdale. Boasting of over 35 years worth of experience in the industry, Tip Top has satisfied the needs of boat owners from all over the world, thanks to its experienced and proficient team of workmen, technicians and seamstresses. If you would like your boat to be fitted with high-quality products at amazing prices, Tip Top is the place for you.


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