Saturday, January 22, 2011

Fancy Wings

This incredible pair of wingbacks are underway to have wood legs ebonized, frames reinforced and then reupholstered. The striking couple which I've featured on facebook a number of times now, have more than a few mouths agape at their magnificence in tattered Fortuny cloth that most resembles current pattern "Glicine", but I really don't know what this pattern is, or if it's still available.

That great expanse of back is definitely worth repurposing into some throw cushions or even framing.

The following pictures will show (and serve to remind me later) areas that may need special attention or show the previous upholsterer's different methods. I'll want to consider those when I go about the work of reupholstering. All pieces of furniture are different, so when a call comes in that says, " much to do a pair of wingbacks?" I find it hard to answer straight away, because not all will have the same construction of frame or the same kind of padding. Cotton, curled hair, or foam - all respond differently under the hand and to different weights and weaves of fabric going over.

A post from last summer on a similarly compound curved tiny settee is what I'm recalling as I take these down. I see even the fine handwork that went into applying the Fortuny had the same issues I had with the inside-back that curves down, around and up all at once. The eye really can't even see this happening, you just know that it is because you can't get the woven goods to do all that the crazy curves of the frame are asking.

Hahah! I see the area that I had so much trouble with on the settee was the same for this poor fellow - they've split the fabric too! This guy made a complicated little bandage span across the lowest section of back and handstitched it all on so insure it wouldn't move under stress and wear and get worse. Ma'am or Sir, your work has lasted decades, you'll be glad to know.

Sorry we can't say the same for the webbing and springs foundation of the smaller chair..must've been someone's favorite. The strong ties have pulled the steamed wood rail quite to shreds.

Egads, you can see daylight through there. And I'll have to fix that with Sculpwood or somesuch to provide a strong area for new stapling and securing new webbing/spring ties, or someone will end up on the floor...

All that good curled hair (boar) will be fluffed and reused, stuffed into handsewn "bridles" to keep it in place and provide more years of good padding.

So fantastic, these chairs. The new fabric is equally stunning, Christian Liaigre's Brocatelle in color "Chrome", which we will apply with the wrong side facing.   I worked some cushions from this pattern some time ago in a different colorway:

That's all for now. You'll have to check in to see how it all pans out. They're going away for the wood to be refinished and then I'll post on them again. In the meantime I'll try to put up some more interesting things. Do visit the facebook page, handy link in the right hand column here, I update it much more frequently - H.

1 comment:

  1. Your site is absolutely wonderful, I love seeing everything being made new again. I love furniture and I wish I could find a class here in Jacksonville Fl to show me how to re do some furniture I have that I also have gotten from a thrift store because of how unique it is but it does need redoing of course the cost right now is out of my budget and would like to do it myself can you suggest any good books or anything to teach me how I have been sewing for about 40 years so I feel like I could do a decent job of course it wouldnt be a professional job, I love your stuff on your etsy site


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