Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Before & After ~ My sofa and a new Arm Chair

Today is going to be another mini-post. I wish the photo above
had better resolution. It's actually copied from the original from an
obviously bad copier. It's the before photo of my latest pride and joy.
I bought this Arm chair for $35 from a Salvation Army that had great

And Voila!! The end result. This chair is SOooo
comfortable but I really love the fabric!

Another find from the same Salvation Army for $45.
It was marked down from $90 because no one wanted it.
Cream striped sofa that had huge unsightly stains on it.

And after the make-over, the
ugly duckling turned into a swan.

This is the best before photo of my sofa I could find.
Really kicking myself for not getting better photos.

And of course the after. For all those finding
old pieces to be reborn - Happy Hunting!!


Deborah said...

ok ; please help me -how do you know if an item is worth reupholstering? how do you get the material& how much material?

I picked up a fully upholstered chair becaue I love the shape but it smells really bad. Should I just trash it?

I see so many lovely results on line & I would loooove to do this!

Ursie B said...

Wow! Amazing!!! I love it!! I'm so impressed that you tackled a tufted sofa...seems quite challenging!

Cote de Texas said...

Wow!!!! those pieces look great -a great job - you should go into interior design, hahaha1!!

The Peak of Chic said...

Happy hunting indeed! Karen, you really did a fantastic job refurbishing these old pieces. I love all of the fabrics you chose for these different pieces.

diana @ please sir said...

WOW - amazing transformations!!

diana @ please sir said...

Do you re-do these yourself?

Mrs.French said...

I am in ah. stunning...I need to go to the Salvation Army now.

Suzy said...

They all look fantastic! You have a great eye. I wish there were more flea markets etc. here in HK, I really miss searching for old pieces to be reborn.

Suzy said...

They all look fantastic! You have a great eye. I wish there were more flea markets etc. here in HK, I really miss searching for old pieces to be reborn.

SimplyGrove said...

That first couch!!!!!!!!!! Takes my breath away! Brilliant job on all of the pieces!

Alkemie said...

Thank for all of your kind words!

Deborah - I don't actually upholster these myself except that I hunt for pieces and for fabrics. There is no rule for choosing pieces, it's simply what you like or it could be a really ugly piece that you can see a lot of potential in. To do tufted pieces or chairs that need repair work - it takes a lot of work and time and the expertise for it. I would start with something simpler if you want to learn to do it yourself. There are many books that can teach you about upholstering. If you have to refinish - you should definitely have an aired out workspace you can work in. There are many ways to buy fabric but you have to choose upholstery fabric that is going to last on a piece of furniture unless you expect not to sit in it much. I personally shop at a discount wholesale fabric shop to cut down the cost of fabric or you can order fabric through showrooms. A sofa typically takes 16-18 yards - it could be more though if you have a particularly long one and chairs range from 1 yard to 8 yards. My striped chair took 8 yards of material because it is a larger armchair and the entire back is also covered in fabric. Knowing how much fabric to use just takes experience or you can go to a professional to get an estimate. I bought a pair of chairs that smelled horrible. Most of the smell is attached to the fabric and not the wood so if you're planning to recover it, most of the smell will likely go away if you're going to replace it completely with new fabric and cushions. Hope that helps.

You should check out this BLog under my blogroll. Her father is a professional upholsterer and she periodically posts about it. Wonderful photos.

Le Petit Cabinet de Curiosites

Hope this helps.

Ursie B ~ I only wish I could take credit for the upholstering - alas I can only take credit for finding the pieces and choosing the material.

Joni - You're too kind. I can only dream as I've never had formal training lol. Just a huge addiction to design and objects.

Jennifer - Thank you! I always find it a stroke of luck to find material in a discount warehouse full of fabrics that inspires! Then there's always the issue of whether there's enough left on the roll...

Diana - If you've read above, I do not do the upholstery myself. I considered it before but it takes a lot of work and sewing and gluing which I know are not my strong points ^_^ I couldn't sew a straight line if I tried.

Mrs French - Thrift Stores are definitely addictive but tons of fun. You never know what you will find.

Suzy - Thank you so much! I often wondered if there was something like a Craig's list in HK. But then again, most local HKers are not into vintage or antiques - they love their modern decor and items. When I lived there, many of my friends would remark that I seem like I was born from another era LOL. I would look for old Chinese records and attend concerts of singers popular in my parent's youth while everyone was hunting for the latest electonics.

Simply Grove - Thanks so much for the very encouraging comment!

Karen ^_^

Villa Anna said...

*sighs at the tuft love* Karen they are absolutely stunning! Wow I WISH they had sofa's like that at my local Salvo's.

Anna :)

layersofmeaning said...

where is the Arm chair fabric from?

Erin said...

This post was so inspiring! I love all these pieces, especially the arm chair. :-)

{this is glamorous} said...

Karen, these are amazing transformations! Especially love how the $45 Salvation Army sofa turned out with the beautiful grey velvet--stunning!

Jennifer Ramos said...

LOVE this post! i cant get enough of before n after shots of upholstery.

Jen Ramos
'100% Recycled DESIGNER Cards & More'

Jessica N. Condatore said...

I love the idea of rescuing a vintage find and reupholstering it. However the cost of doing so often is intimidating - were these costly undertakings? Any tips on saving at the upholstery shop?

Maryam in Marrakesh said...

I am totally *amazed* by that sofa!!!! It just looks fabulous!

Topsy Turvy said...

You did such a wonderful job on all of these! The chair and gray sofa are so glamourous!

Abbey Goes Design Scouting said...

Total inspiration! Lovely lovely fabrics you picked.

Anonymous said...

If you are looking forward to avail of furniture solutions for schools, industries, communities and office furniture (mobili per ufficio ), then Momi. is just the right destination for you. Moreover, as this Italian furniture solution provider is being recognized as a successful interpreter of modern furniture solutions for more than 20 years, you can contact http://www.momi.it immediately without any hesitation and get hold of almost all types of furniture solutions.

Anonymous said...

Haett ich nicht gedacht...

Sarah said...

Where can I find a coffee table like yours?!

Anonymous said...

[p]It is relatively unambiguous fashions [url=http://www.tiffanyringsdcooutlet.co.uk]tiffany rings[/url] on this evening and age, and is also extraordinarily dazzling sorts of jewels . However you of which any kind of one too could be rather ideal [url=http://www.tiffanyjewelleryinuk.co.uk]tiffany jewellery uk[/url] in your attire . And exquisite [url=http://www.cheaptiffanycharms.co.uk]tiffany sale[/url] make a decision tiffany earrings, because tiffany & corp . So far, its designs have remained one of the world隆炉s most chic and classical styles . Indeed, Tiffany anklet bracelets enthusiasts may style [url=http://www.tiffanyjewelleryinuk.co.uk]tiffany uk[/url] his suitable, as well as its first silverware, invitations as well as tableware will be awestruck . Most importantly, don隆炉t forget to do a proper spelling and grammar check . Even with the most basic of word-processing programs you can include [url=http://www.cheaptiffanycharms.co.uk]tiffany charms[/url] different types of bullets and even use custom pictures as bullet icons . The meaning of [url=http://www.tiffanyjewelleryinuk.co.uk]tiffany bracelet uk[/url] that clover, tiffany Pendants, the quiet connotation of the tiffany charm showing the hands folded in prayer.[/p][p]Your divine small stones and gaudy pearls preserve the following slice on the dainty, vibrant or perhaps eye-catching most recent trendiest styles . The following provides all of them the design on the unique devoid of the substantial price . Right now, someone, somewhere will be embarking on the writing of an eBook . Many people want to purchase tiffany jewelry to top off their personality . You will find multi string anklet bracelets, coronary heart charm anklet bracelets, smoke coronary heart toggle bracelets, link anklet bracelets, cubic zirconium tennis games anklet bracelets, fine mesh clasp bracelets, gold coronary heart label ID anklet bracelets, dual row cable anklet bracelets plus much more . Today, all of the gold and [url=http://www.tiffanyringsdcooutlet.co.uk]tiffany and co outlet[/url] silver used in Tiffany's U . William Spratling was however one more well-known ny jeweler acknowledged for his silver diamond jewelry designs . 175th Anniversary Tanzanite necklace

The Tiffany Anniversary Tanzanite necklace prior to setting ? Photo: Tiffany & Co.[/p]

Anonymous said...

magnificent points altogether, you simply received
a new reader. What could you suggest in regards to
your post that you just made some days ago? Any sure?

Look at my homepage http://torontowineeducation.com/

Anonymous said...

Hi, i think that i saw you visited my blog so i came to “return the favor”.

I am attempting to find things to enhance my site!

I suppose its ok to use a few of your ideas!!

Look at my web page vintage clothing in nashville tennessee

Anonymous said...

[p]- It is good idea to surf through their website to look out for signs and information on guaranteed quality by harnessing well organized equipments,green facilities,and strictly supervised procedures for spawning custom made handbags . That [url=http://www.chanelssales.co.uk]cheap chanel handbags[/url] may break the bags . Therefore continually [url=http://www.chanelssales.co.uk]chanel handbags uk[/url] be sensible . You should add some vivid colors [url=http://www.chanelssales.co.uk]chanel handbags[/url] for your boring and cold winter days . The most popular characters of DVF are the wrapped body dresses and print pictures . Branding by printing on carrier bags is a great way of providing your company with the advertising it needs without spending a boatload of money . First, should not too big, small and exquisite as well . I don’t even want to be around all these happy women! Why are you here?” [url=http://www.chanelssales.co.uk]chanel classic handbag
[/url] rebuffed Mary . Canvas printings are popular [url=http://www.chanelssales.co.uk]cheap chanel handbags uk[/url] in these years.[/p]

Anonymous said...

Remarkable! Its genuinely remarkable piece of writing, I have got much clear idea about
from this article.

Review my blog post: acoustic guitar chords for beginners

Anonymous said...

[p]To avoid leaving dirty play or watermark surface [url=http://www.louisvvuittonbagsonsale.com]louis vuitton messenger bags[/url] wrinkles . 2, if the leather stains, [url=http://www.louisvvuittonbagsonsale.com]louis vuitton bags on sale[/url] wiped with a clean wet sponge dipped in warm detergent, then let dry naturally . Sharpei avoid wet, care and [url=http://www.louisvvuittonbagsonsale.com]louis vuitton shoulder bag[/url] cleaning of raw rubber wipe and special products should not be used shoe polish . But to do regular care, it would have to find a professional care facility, I usually go fendi luxury conservation, professional and technical skills, first-class service . Such as micro-oxidation, may try to gently rub the flour or toothpaste, metal can . 2, bright color schemes bag is definitely the most beautiful scenery in the street!

Wearing jeans and a T-shirt, natural and refreshing, matched with a large red, bright orange or blue bag definitely make you an instant shine!

3, large bags are the most convenient

We have never seen a beauty, wearing the dress of the United States and the United States, and actually dress pocket full of things, right? That would definitely take a man to the mine down! Small bag to hold things is very limited, often even cosmetics are hard to let go . The Internet is the practice waterfall find additional resources lv wallet . fr offers just the diaper bags with style . Indeed succeeded.[/p][p]Then, the blazon of purses are made with high quality leather and good . The breath instantly diffusion sweet style, metal buckles, and decorative tassels, this bag has become their favorite Mature, choose a white dress shirt with a wide-leg [url=http://www.louisvvuittonbagsonsale.com]louis vuitton bags[/url] purple shorts, let Sven very lovable . Methods / steps
This hit the color trend of U . The breath instantly diffusion sweet style, metal buckles, and decorative tassels, this bag has become their favorite Mature, choose a white dress shirt with a wide-leg purple shorts, let Sven very lovable . Sense of perspective white shirt, which take a black camisole colors bring a sense of let you look more generous and elegant, blue-purple high waist pants, waist bow highlight your sweet and gentle, coupled with a paragraph wealthy brown bucket bag, to win the wild style, commuting and [url=http://www.louisvvuittonbagsonsale.com]cheap louis vuitton bags[/url] leisure are appropriate . Bag control as a brand, I also have many years of experience in bag maintenance . Some use the internet to search for cascading basic Louis Vuitton bags cheap price offered in the credibility of bartering center and a favorable exchange rate . Good ductility of the first layer of leather, a long 9.[/p]

Anonymous said...

Thank you for another wonderful article. Where else could
anyone get that kind of information in such a perfect approach of writing?
I've a presentation subsequent week, and I'm on the search for such

Also visit my web-site Jordan Femme

Anonymous said...

For those who could e-mail me with a number of
strategies on simply how you made your blog look this glorious, I
would be grateful.

Have a look at my web-site i'm having trouble getting pregnant

Anonymous said...

Hi, i think that i saw you visited my site so i came to “return the favor”.
I am trying to find things to enhance my website!I suppose
its ok to use a few of your ideas!!

my webpage - http://ngosummit.com/nike-free-run.html

Anonymous said...

What's Happening i am new to this, I stumbled upon this I have found It absolutely helpful and it has helped me out loads. I hope to give a contribution & help different customers like its aided me. Great job.

my weblog ... rnd.mbccni.co.kr

Anonymous said...

Hello to all, how is all, I think every one is getting more from this web page, and your views are fastidious in favor of
new people.

Also visit my web site :: Read More Here

Anonymous said...

Just want to say your article is as astounding. The clearness in your post is simply cool and
i can assume you're an expert on this subject. Well with your permission let me to grab your RSS feed to keep updated with forthcoming post. Thanks a million and please continue the gratifying work.

Take a look at my web blog - Sac Louis Vuitton

Anonymous said...

It's difficult to find well-informed people for this subject, but you seem like you know what you're talking about!

My web site: Nike Pas Cher

Anonymous said...

I do not know if it's just me or if everybody else encountering issues with your site. It appears like some of the written text on your posts are running off the screen. Can somebody else please provide feedback and let me know if this is happening to them too? This could be a issue with my web browser because I've
had this happen previously. Thanks

Here is my web site - Air Max Pas Cher