Saturday, May 25, 2013

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 I thought I'd refresh this old post from 2013.

Michigan has a long held reputation for quality furniture manufacturing. This midcentury Cogswell reclining chair is from The Luxury Furniture Corp. of Grand Rapids aka "Furniture City".   My client remembers her dad driving the family around town weekends in their Studebaker, on the hunt for good furniture all the while admiring their city's industry and teaching the kids a thing or two in the process. This chair was one such piece she remembered as being purchased during one of their family outings.

These chairs from the 40s/50s are often platform rockers - this one has a simple construction in its base that allows it to tilt back or recline in just one position. Sinuous springs or "S" springs need no attention other than a new burlap cover + spring pad to keep all padding above it intact. But they are double spring systems, with a short coil spring unit in cushion that sits on top of sinuous attached to frame.


There are a few trim panels, or just strangely shaped and applied pieces to deal with because of the very shape of the chairs. No modifications will be made by me, I'll redo it as it was before only I'll close that front post edge better than the previous upholsterer.



The attached spring cushion has these long flap things that are to extend down and become the outsides of the chair's base. They must be patterned and sewn inside-out during construction of the welted and waterfalled seating cushion. It's a challenge to keep all the pieces straight in your head while bringing all to the machine to cord and seam properly, but eventually it gets done. 
I added a new layer of cotton and dacron poly over the existing spring unit (a contained spring unit, not muslin covered marshall springs) and existing cotton. No need to scrap what's there unless it's incredibly dirty from being stored in a barn or something - which this was not.  

Moved on to arms:

Now it's coming together...

A large pattern like this does not necessarily have to be matched - the single welt cord separates the broken pattern in such a way that it doesn't offend. If client had been particular about matching it would have required up to 2 yds extra fabric, which would have increased the project costs by a coupla hundred.  There was really no need for this. 
My personal fun is in matching button fabric to pattern. Again, not always necessary, I just felt like it.
Pretty cute, I must say!

Fabric chosen by my customer is a Pindler & Pindler favorite double woven or pocket weave called Samantha in the color Garden. It was one of our favorite patterns here at Miller Upholstering a few years ago and did dining chairs and pillows from this same fabric for other client projects. 

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Catching Up

I've become acquainted with fellow upholsterers on Instagram from California, down to Texas, over to Jersey, the Carolina's and Georgia, from to Vancouver to Belgium, Norway and France. This is stimulating for me in keeping up with decor trends and technical methods practiced in other workrooms and fun because it feels a little like having pen pals, as I did when I was a kid. While you still hear some people say "upholstery is a dying art", I'm happy to report we are all busy and the upholstery trade for new and antique home furnishings is alive and well. I continue to book well into this summer with projects like this...
For Alecia Stevens Interiors
Fabric will be Holland and Sherry mohair velvet. Waiting for a Samuel &Sons micro welt cord and nailhead trim selection. I've got this one underway...
For Lula Vintage Wear
To be reupholstered in this sharp blue vintage Naugahyde -
This sofa is also already in process ...
A family's sofa since 1947

And will get upholstered in this Robert Allen fabric, Apple Blossom/Peacock


A sofa I upholstered in Bennison Chinese Pheasants for designer Jacqueline Fortier in 2005 is due for a makeover - soon-to-be Holly Hunt Great Plains mohair.
For Jacqueline Fortier Design
A few more waiting in the wings. This order for 2...

Both to be done in a textured creamy chenille chosen from this collection by Duralee Fabrics

This old dear is first up though, it's owner most anxious for its return...

And it'll soon be wearing this, Samantha/Garden from Pindler & Pindler

That's the updated report on workroom bookings. How long will it take to complete all that? Lets just say several weeks ...I'll share pics here as time allows.



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...