I had planned to get all three pieces of furniture to the same stage (the upholstery on) before applying the “gimp” which is a decorative flat braided trim that hides the nail heads. But I decided I needed the sense of accomplishment today that comes with “finished.” So naive as ever, I thought I would just whip out finishing the chairs and then move back to the settee – expecting to still make significant progress on the settee.
Gimp goes on with hot glue and small round head brass nails. (I learned after studying my books again.) As usual, click the pics for a larger view.
Originally, when they came to me, the chairs had the larger round head decorative brass upholstery tacks all around the perimeter on top of the gimp as well – spaced maybe 1/8” apart. But I like it like this. If the customer wants the tacks all around on top of this, I’ll apply them. But I think it’s more attractive like this. I think those tacks probably end up getting applied on pieces down the road when somebody catches the trim and pulls it loose or it starts to loosen from age and use.
Lightly sanded and touched up with Rosewood stain a couple of spots on the chairs. I finished off the bottoms of both chairs as well, covering the burlap with black synthetic fabric. (Read trip to Wal-mart for black fabric.) Done!
Welll now, with a sense of accomplishment boosting my spirits, I can move back to the settee. But wait, dern it, I need to have buttons covered in the upholstery fabric for the pleated back. Check the internet. I can send some fabric off and have new buttons made. But I want to get something done today. My books telll me the professionals have some kind of button machine but the only upholsterer I know of in town recently moved and I don’t know where. So, my oldest instruction book shows me how to cover the buttoms myself – the “old fashioned way.”
Hmmmm. 5 or 6 minutes per buttom x 32 buttons = 1.5 hours later I’m done! I even moved to the den so I could watch TV while recovering buttons. Oh my goodness, the small details I have no idea would take so long!
Okay, I used the old upholstery as the pattern and cut out the new pieces in the new upholstery. Copied the lay out lines and transfered them with pencil to the new pieces. I’ve situated the pile of old stuffing on top of the tablesaw and it’s now nine and half hours later – with short breaks for lunch, supper, Wal-mart and transferring loads of family laundry (while the rest of the family is out of town). I laid the new uphostery on one half of the back, put in a few tacks to delineate the pleats – begin to stuff – but I’m tired, so I stop. After a breakfast meeting and some early Saturday “chores,” started at 11:00 a.n. – stop at 8:30 p.m. Appreciate your local upholsterer! They earn every penny they make!
-- Paul, Texas