Saturday, May 24, 2008




Ugly as home-made upholstery...

I decided to have a Friday night project. I needed a big piece of foam to make a cushion for the sofa(which i'll sew later), and I had a coupon for 40% off the item of my choice at JoAnn fabrics. Well, this 5" thick foam is $51.99/yard, and I need 2 yards and got a little extra for another project. With tax and everything and the 40% off, this green piece of foam was almost $80. I'm kind of staggered by that, but then again I DO have "sucker" stamped on my forehead. Anyway.

Once at a fleamarket in McKinney, I bought a plain wooden frame thingie, thinking it would make a nice little ottoman. I primed/sized/gold leafed four finials and used them for feet and then just did a crude upholstery job of a red and gold toile onto a plywood base. Eventually, the ottoman became the doglet's means of conveyance onto the bed, and the fabric got dirty and faded over time. These days, the doglet has a 3-stage ottoman/chair/bed hopping process. Them old hips ain't what they once was since she got a hitch in her gitalong. Poor old lady.

Well, I got enough extra foam to cobble onto the ottoman project and I was off to the races. I also picked up this denim fabric with natural linen stitching.

My new staple gun is kind of crap, really, but then again, maybe this plywood is harder than the staple gun is made to penetrate. Anyway, I pretty much did a pitiful job, but at least I got something accomplished today. I'll probably rip it all out and redo it later this summer or something.

Either that, or I'll still have the ottoman with this upholstery in 20 years. It'll be one or t'other. My upholstery teacher would be mortified, I think. Oh well, at least it's not dirty and stinky yet.

8 comments:

Christina LMT said...

Okay, here's my crafty question:

Do you have to carve or cut the foam to make those rounded edges, or does it do that when you tuck the fabric around it?

And I love that fabric, by the way. The design is divine!

phlegmfatale said...

christina - nope, no carving required. You do have to really manage the directions you pull the fabric and hold it taut as you staple each bit. There are many kinds of stuffing, too. Also, if they are using a more coarse weave of fabric, upholsterers have a tool like an awl which they can plunge into the fabric to scoot the stuffing around inside the piece to achieve the symmetry and shape they were hoping for, if just securing the fabric alone does not achieve that. Upholsterers have some really cool tools. The way I think of it is the art of upholstery is really just finding a pretty sort of way to hide all the raw edges.

Myron said...

You nailed it. Upholstery is an art. And you did good. From here.

HollyB said...

I'm thinkin you need to invite us ALL over to see this demin facric creation you speak of b/c I am GROOVIN' on those finial feet!

Kelly said...

Wow, that is one puffy ottoman!

Hi doglet!

Looking forward to next weekend (or tomorrow...which ever we end up doing).

lainy said...

It turned out really good. Nice and puffy. Makes my feet wanna nap ;)

Lin said...

Well done! Upholstery is very often a strenuous fight and it looks like you won. I'd be tempted to add a thick and silky cord around the circumference, right where the material and the wood meets. Wonder what a lustrous gold cord matching the feet would do for it? Sorry ... I am always adding too many details, an old Victorian hang over, I guess.

Lin M. said...

I guarantee that is harder than you made it sound. It looks nice. I have a little ottoman that looks much the same, but I paid WAY too much for it.

Well done!