Upcycling Project. An Antique Sofa

This is a project which has fallen into the “next on the list” category for months. OK, I admit it years.  It’s a battered, antique, thread bare two-seater couch which has been sat unloved for too long.

This sofa is approximately 30 years old and is a similar style to the 1940’s Chippendale Camel Back with intact metal coil springs and a solid hardwood frame. It’s a quality piece of furniture made before the likes of DFS and Argos were on the scene.

I recently tweeted asking my readers to recommend a reupholster in the Midlands and sure enough you guys delivered and I have got two quotes. This isn’t going to be cheap but the idea of dumping this unique piece of furniture for someone else to upcycle isn’t an option so I figure it’s an investment.

Rather than post a before and after blog, I am posting the before now and you’ll have to be patient. It’s going to take a couple of weeks at least so check back then for the finished result. I actually can’t wait!

Inspired?…. some simple tips for spotting your own upcycle sofa reupholstery project

1. Charity shops, garage/moving sales, car boot sales, house clearance dealers and jumble sales are the ideal places to hunt down furniture at low cost.  Keep an eye out in your local post office or village store notice board too. Local is best as it’s easier and cheaper (plus better for the environement) to transport around the corner.

2. Look past, even ignore, old, worn, torn, stained and dated upholstery.  It’s what’s underneath the fabric that makes for a quality piece of furniture.

3. It’s best to look for a solid hardwood frame and any steel spring system. Foamy sofas are not really worth bothering with.

4. For an upcycle project, you need to look for sofas which are older than 15  to 20 years old.  They are more likely to be better engineered and manufactured. Look for steel coil springs which are virtually indestructible. They will have stood the test of time.

5. Once you’ve found your sofa to upcylce,  it’s time to find a reupholster.  This is what you’ll spend the most on. The total cost for re-upholstering depends on the type of fabric selected, the amount of fabric needed for the project, labour and other associated costs like new foam or feathers. Labour will vary depending on the complexity of the piece.

They say you learn something every day so here is something you may not know. The word “couch” comes from the French coucher, which means “to lie down.”