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About Me

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My name is Gerrie Wydeven doing-business-as Wydeven Designs. I have been conducting this small GREEN business since 2004. Wydeven Designs, based in the Atlanta, Georgia area, sells CHAIRS, LOVESEATS, CHAISES, SETTEES and other fine, well-constructed refurbished upholstered pieces. I love to travel, cook, take photographs and generally follow style and decor topics as well!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Selecting and Working with a Good Upholsterer!

Re-upholstering costs are my highest single expense.  I have had over 700 pieces professionally re-upholstered over the past 10+ years (at least a dozen of my own furniture) and have some suggestions about what to look for in good upholstery work - I will discuss expected prices in a separate blog:

  • Choose a reputable upholsterer based on observed work (visit the shop at different times) and references
  • Ask about pickup and delivery options including any additional costs for the service
  • Ensure that no one is smoking in the shop - the odor will linger in your fabrics
  • Check for pattern placement and matching - if there is more than one option for pattern placement, discuss with upholsterer in advance (e.g. direction and correct side of fabric)
  • If a new seat cushion is needed, the upholsterer will generally provide foam - ask that it be "softened" by wrapping in Dacron or similar sheeting (this trick can also be used to add heft to a too-flat pillow)
  • Ask about single or double-cording and consider whether contrasting piping might add to the piece
  • Ensure that 8-way hand-tied coil springs are checked and retied if necessary (may even need to be replaced) 
  • Ensure that dirty, smelly, or inadequate fillers are replaced and/or enhanced
  • If you are redoing woodwork, have it done after removing old fabric and before recovering chair (many upholsterers either directly provide that service or can have it done for you)
  • Clean woodwork including eliminating any oils before having redone - oils can get on the fabrics (see my blog about refurbishing wood - use GOOF OFF or similar cleaner)
  • Get all pricing up front including any contingencies (e.g, don't know how much filler - added work required once old fabric is removed) - this should not happen often and only for the most complex and/or "destroyed" pieces
  • When picking up (or having delivered) completed piece,  check carefully before paying - reject for re-work if not satisfied
  • Buy and bring your own fabrics (make sure the quality is worth the expense) - most upholsterers can order for you but it will cost more
    Pattern Matching
    Pattern Matching and Placement 

Pattern Matching
I use Song's Upholstery of Norcross, GA almost exclusively and highly recommend them for their prompt and professional work!

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