Thursday, September 29, 2011

19th Century Ladies Rocker

This customer's family piece - a small ladies rocking chair or even one meant for the nursery ...

Shows that it originally had a caned seat,

I wish I knew caning or could schedule time to learn! I have in storage an original Thonet bench that I refuse to upholster over the broken caned back,

But this little rocker was upholstered over ages ago with a resilient curled hair pad with cotton over webbing + burlap,

I'll redo it the same and finally reupholster with Lelievre's Aubusson in color Rubis,

A fitting replacement for the antique cotton and silk brocade that I'll reserve for the customer.

Wasn't the old brocade gorgeous?

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One more thing - look how good old nails were - smaller and slimmer

The ones available for use today are fatter and thicker - not as nice for holding fine fabrics to frames - but most people would be using staples ...

I'll keep the old nails. Waste not want not and I actually did have a request from a senior do-it-yourselfer recently for the finer nails. I shared with her from my stockpile. Yep. That's what I'm here for.

No, I did not like nailing this close to the edge of caned holes but I didn't want to go too far out either, especially with the detailed carving of the chair.

It really is a lovely little piece though. Here's where it lives:

Location:E Lake St,Minneapolis,United States


  1. What a great plan to keep the old nails! I have 2 Victorian chairs in the queue to strip that have never been reupholstered (covered in the original horsehair fabric). If I can get the nails out without bending them, I will definitely re-use. Thanks for the idea.

  2. Sure thing - I reuse all the time. I keep little nails in glass spice or mustard jars like some old man...! Useful!


From Start To Finish

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