Monday, March 15, 2010

1950's Kroehler Chaise Sofa

This was a 50's piece I'd been saving for a long time, and when a friend recently purchased a 1960's built home in Minneapolis' Bryn Mawr neighborhood, this frame came to mind to be perfect.  Many modern (read "contemporary") sofa's would overwhelm the low windows in first level living room and small dimensions between front door, fireplace and dining room.  Still, a family of 3 wants the one sofa in the house to be comfortable, multi-purposeful, durable for the kids who'll be coming over and for this (stylish) family - be cute and unique.  The good name of Kroehler doesn't disappoint.  A quick perusal of the web revealed this good article on Kroehler's other talents.  Wish they'd go back and reissue some of these good designs.

This Kroehler model bearing a small metal plate with patent no. 2.597.860. It comes apart in 3 pieces, all nut and bolt tightened, the hard wood thick as asphalt and ingeniously designed to reupholster slick as you please. This one had long lost it's cushion, so we've decided to order a down envelope for a 3" foam cut to shape. The short blonde wooden legs interlocked to the frame and then were nut-and-bolted as well - much better than screw-on legs, especially with the jumping and flopping that often occurs with kids.

The bare frame of course, had to have the vacuuming of it's life...I mean, this had been stored in a dirty garage for years, before that an attic storage since probably the 80's. The built in spring unit at back and seat get new covering of general use denim I've had around here and a 1/2" layer of foam, then just cotton.

We decided to dispense with the channels and just do buttons. Remember, the cushion's getting down-wrapped foam - that's just plain foam in there now, while we wait the arrival of down product from New Jersey.

That down wrap came in just as this was going to post - look how it fills the cushion cover. An expense to pay past plain foam, but so worth it.


  1. I just love this blog. Anyone who sees the beauty and disguised elegance in forgotten pieces "set by the wayside" is all right in my book.

    The Kroehler sofa/chaise is wonderful. I like the update in line, although the fabric choice leaves me cold. BUT! it's not going to be in my house and it works nicely with the feel of the piece.

    Lovely work. And inspirational.

  2. So glad I found your post! Love that sofa!
    I've just started into my first attempt at reupholstering... a 1950's swivel slipper chair (looks like a Kroehler, but no label).
    There's no separate seat cushion, just padding over the springs which could use a bit of plumping.
    I'm off to browse through some of your previous posts...

    Kimberly :-)

  3. Thank you both - I hope to reorganize my time so to include more frequent tutorial-type posts! HM


From Start To Finish

Here's a post from a while back that had lost it's image links.  Someone was asking about Cogswell chairs just yesterday, so...