The Beautiful Science of Re-upholstery
Every day we have clients reach out to us to ask if we can reupholster a piece of furniture and every day we say “Absolutely!” There’s always a catch, though – and that catch is that many folks don’t realize that reupholstery is a big deal – the piece of furniture is stripped down to the frame, then rebuilt as necessary, which explains the project's cost. However, when we are done, you will have a "new" piece of furniture as a result of your investment with us at Pam’s Heavenly Creation. No matter what you might think, the quality of older furniture simply cannot be touched in today’s market.
So for those of you thinking about reupholstering some older furniture, how can you tell that it is a good candidate? Look beyond that ugly fabric to the furniture's bones. Check the following:
Look at the bottom frame and make sure it's hardwood and kiln-dried. Check for strong, intact corner braces and stable construction.
Determine if the furniture was made with 8-way hand-tied springs. They are tailored to each piece for prime comfort and support.
Test the furniture to make sure it doesn't rock during use.
Look for a recognizable brand name. Henredon, old Ethan Allen, Michael Thomas, and others produce furniture worthy of reupholstering and using again. In a pinch, Google that name and find out more about the brand.
Once you know that you have a solid, well-built piece, the next step is to learn what your options are. Working with us, we can look at your upholstery fabric options and take all these factors into consideration before buying costly fabric for reupholstering:
The weight of the fabric depends on where and how the piece will be used. Furniture for the bedroom doesn't need to be heavy-duty, but living room furniture does. Non-upholstery-weight fabric works for a purely decorative piece.
Take a look at the back of your fabric swatch for the so-called “Weisenbeck” rating. The rating is determined by an abrasion resistance test; a machine rubs the fabric and keeps track of the number of rubs before the fabric is worn through. A heavy-duty rating translates to 30,000 double rubs.
Once we’ve got some ideas, you might want to take home a fabric sample and tuck in existing furniture to see if you like it. Live with it for a few days before making your decision.
Choose a fabric that will truly update the piece, not just copy the look it had before. Use a different color, go from a solid to a pattern, or change the pattern scales.
Here are some ways that to really change the shape and contour of a piece when you reupholster with us at Pam’s Heavenly Creation:
Add a contrast welt to define lines. This looks best on a sculptural piece.
Try a mingled cord or a cord with a lip instead of a contrast welt.
Change the skirt or remove the skirt. This works great on older furniture that now look squat because of their short skirts. Have an upholsterer install a skirt higher up on the piece for a more graceful look.
Add banding to the bottom of the skirt.
Take the channeling or tufting out for a more modern look.
How Much Will This Cost?
Remember, costs will vary according to fabric choice and project details. The best thing to do is to just reach out to us and let’s see what makes the most sense for you and your home! Once we’ve had a chance to look at your ideas and the piece in question, we can work with you on budget and timeframe and make sure that you have. As experts in residential and commercial reupholstery services, Pam’s Heavenly Creations can absolutely help you to make that older furniture new again – after all, the quality was built into it “back then” and today’s offerings don’t hold a candle when it comes to durability. Contact us today and let’s make it beautiful again!