A few years back, when I wrote for Curbly, I used to show a basic upholstery project and try to convince DIY readers that they could really do this. Then, I would tell readers of the pitfalls they would encounter. A common misconception is that you can roll through an upholstery project with NO mistakes or complications. Don’t delude yourself. There are always unforeseen challenges and mistakes, it’s just part of the deal.
When I worked for Paul Howard, the jolly upholsterer/furniture designer/brit, I watched and learned how to get yourself out of trouble once there was trouble. I tell my classes that the BEST OF THE BEST make mistakes or have to redo certain areas. It’s not a bad thing. It’s a normal thing.
So, DO NOT FRET WHEN YOU MAKE A MISTAKE!
Now that I’m finished pontificating about self forgiveness, let’s take a look at this DIY upholstery project I found over on Girl v. The World.
WOW WOW WOW!!!
In three posts, Joy takes us through her chair reupholstering journey (husband out of town is the best time to do these type of things). Armed with make-do tools, plenty of wine and a library of Harry Potter movies, she managed to turn an old tired chair into a light, fresh little french number.
You know why I’m so impressed with her project? Because it’s one tough job to get an inside back like this one sewn, pulled and attached as well as she did. This inside back is one of the hardest techniques to master. In fact, that’s why they are usually tufted (which this one was in a previous life, as you can see here), or at least a few buttons are attached to tighten that inside back fabric, as seen in below.
Joy points out that the most time consuming part of this project was removing the staples. I would have to agree. Look closer to notice how the cording is glued into a groove and that groove is just loaded with staples. So, not only are you taking out staples, you’re digging staples out of a groove, which is a wood damaging nightmare. Oh! Also very hard on the hands.
I’m tickled that Joy is so pleased with her job that she has let herself slip into full blown, chair-saving addiction and has already found two more chairs she’s going to rescue.
Heads up: Bergere chair is another groovy, staple nightmare.
I gotta’ hand it to her, she didn’t overthink it, she just jumped in and made it happen.
See her entire three post saga right here.
WELL DONE JOY, VERY WELL DONE!!!