Upholstery Class House Tour: Ashley’s Gray Flannel Captain’s Chairs

Curses! I don’t have an image of Ashley’s gray chairs BEFORE she reupholstered them. They were kind of a satin-ish stripe as I recall. She had two and needed to get them done for a baby shower at her house.

Anyway, Ashley first came to upholstery class with this chair.

She bemoaned (as all do)how many staples were in the old upholstery. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I’ve heard it a million times. The funny thing is, once students get the staple gun in their hand, what do you think they do? Staple the living daylights out of, not only their top fabric, but the webbing, burlap and dacron too. I need to video tape some of these conversations and play it back. I guess the best way to view staple removal is that the only place to go from there is up. Tearing down can be a nightmare, but educational.

Ashley is one of those girls who just has the right touch. She is very intuitive with fabric, problems and solutions. She anticipates what’s coming and has a solution before there’s a problem. I wish I had more of that. She re-stained the chair frame between Week 1 and Week 2, and came back ready to roll.

When she came in with her two blue captain’s chairs, I was just a tad bit nervous. You know what I always say about inside curves to beginning upholstery students? You don’t know?  I say, “Watch out, inside curves are very tricky!”  If you start noticing upholstered furniture with inside curved backs, you’ll soon realize that most all of them are either button tufted, channeled, diamond tufted or wrinkled. Ashley wanted hers plain (good call, but scary).

Fortunately, she brought in a gray wool flannel fabric that was as soft and workable as you could ever imagine. It was a beauty. So she just jumped right in, took off the old fabric, pressed it for a pattern and carefully began her stitching. Can you tell where the inside back piece is stitched? If you notice where her right hand is, you can’t see it, but the end of the inside back is stitched to the center piece. The reason? It’s much easier to get fabric to hug those curved sides when you have a seam that has just a tiny bit of a curve in it. When she went to pull and attach the wool around the contours of that part of the chair, it fit nice and snugly against the padding and then around the top and over to the back of the frame.  She was able to quickly attach the inside back and it was surprisingly easy and turned out perfect. I couldn’t believe it. I only had to demonstrate and then she took over.  Durn!, I love that girl!

She finished this chair in her second class and did the other captain’s chair completely by herself at home. How about that?!

Then she put it all together—

I’m a bit of a critic, but I must say that these couldn’t look any better if they were done by a professional. The arch certainly adds to the beauty, and look at this light switch plate.

Tell me why we don’t see switch plates like this.

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One Response to Upholstery Class House Tour: Ashley’s Gray Flannel Captain’s Chairs

  1. Absolutely beautiful job. And a beautiful room. Love it.