Basement find. A Client was looking for a chair for her daughter’s nursery room. She searched stores, but to no avail could not find a chair that she liked. We had just finished upholstering a different chair for her. She informed me she was looking for a chair with a solid frame, that was comfortable and that rocked. For her daughter, that was going to have a baby. In the basement of our shop we have vintage furniture that people were either going to burn or bring to the dump. Solid wood frames, vintage lines, furniture build better then anything today. I knew of just the chair that might be perfect. I brought her to where the chair was, showed her the chair in mind. A vintage platform rocker. She took photos, sent them to her daughter. They thought it would be perfect. A few days later she brought me the fabric she wanted on the chair. I brought it up from the basement and the restoration began.
We start the restoration by first stripping the platform rocker to the frame. Taking off all the old fabric, cotton padding and the burlap. Once we are down to the just the solid wood frame. We disconnect the seat springs. So we can re-glue the main structure of the chair. Making sure the platform rocker will last another 70 years.
Now that the frame is re-glued. We attach new E. K. Clips ( clips that hold the springs in place.) Attach the seat springs. Then attach the back springs and replacing any E.K. clips that are broken. Re-building the chair like it was manufactured 70 years ago. The frame is almost ready to be upholstered. Before we can upholster, we sand and clean the wood, The client likes the look of the lighter wood so we just clear coat the wood with an acrylic finish so the wood is the natural color. The frame is solid, the arms and base are cleaned and finished. Now we begin to upholster. New burlap is stapled over the seat and the inside back of the chair. The seat cushion is put back on the chair. This original seat cushion is comprised of straw, horse hair and cotton. By reusing the original cushion verse buying new foam. The original cushion will not break down like the foam cushion. Most foam breaks down between 7 to 12 years. We do however add more cotton to the original cushion making it more comfortable. Then we add 1/2 inch Dacron over the cotton making it even more plush. The seat is upholstered first, Then the arms are upholstered. The inside back of the rocker in now upholstered. only thing left to upholster is the front band of the chair and the outside back. ( The front band is the front of the chair under the cushion.) We put new dacron and cotton on the front of the chair then the fabric. The outside back we apply dacron so the chair is padded and then we staple the fabric.
The chair is now completely restored.
Now this 70 year old platform rocker will be used and enjoyed for another 70 years.
Christmas Special From November 13th thru December 25, 2018. The Furniture Specialist will be running a Christmas Special 10% OFF Labor. For All Your Furniture Repair Needs. Whether it is broken springs, you need new foam cushions, broken frames ( dining room chairs, sofa, loveseat, chairs) or just want a new look before Christmas. We do it all. Call, Email or Text to schedule an appointment. No job is too large or too small.
40 Year Old Club Chair Restored
This is a 40 year old club chair, restored. I started by removing all the fabric. After all the fabric was removed, I removed all the cotton and padding, so all that was left was the frame and springs. The quality of the frames today can not compare to the frames from 40 years ago. Manufacturers used solid wood, dowels and glue 40 years ago. Some of the manufacturers today, just use framing staples to hold the frames together. Once this 40 year old club chair is upholstered it will last another 40 years, outlasting most of the furniture made today. The fabric used for this upholstery job is a Charlotte Fabric R 151 Cayenne. It is 86% Polyester, 14% Acrylic.
In the photo below you will notice the spring system of this occasional chair. This club chair has coil springs, with an eight way hand tie.
8 way hand tying means the springs are tied from front to back, side to side, and then from corner to corner. When it is completed you should be able to count eight knots on every spring. When buying new furniture with coil springs. Lift the cushions off the sofa or chair and feel the knots on the springs through the decking. (The decking is the fabric under the removable cushions) Make sure you are getting a well built piece of furniture, for the money.
Before I can proceed to upholster this club chair, I cut all the old twine off the springs. Then I retied the springs, by hand. Some stores only do a 4 way hand tie. That leaves spaces or gaps in between the springs. I did an eight way hand tie, because it makes the springs more secure, and there are no spaces or gaps in between the springs. After the springs were all retied, I replaced the burlap, and sewed the edge roll on. I added new cotton over the springs and proceeded to upholster.
This 40 year old chair is a great example of quality furniture. Finding this old furniture and upholstering it with your own flair, is better than any furniture found in any store.
This butterfly fabric chair is a great example of taking old furniture and making it new again. We took this vintage chair and restored it. First and foremost we stripped the chair down to the frame. Then we re-tied and re-webbed the springs, replaced the burlap, added new cotton and padding. Then continued to upholster it using the butterfly fabric from Charlotte Fabrics. Making this vintage chair desirable again. The fabric for this upholstery project used Charlotte Fabrics I9000-09. Once the chair was upholstered, then we cleaned and touched up the legs. What a gorgeous chair.