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General Upholstery Questions and Comments => General Discussion => Topic started by: 65Buick on October 24, 2017, 02:37:39 PM

Title: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: 65Buick on October 24, 2017, 02:37:39 PM
This is important. While I am now being offered work from designers, I still like to upholster pieces on my own time, for sale to the public.
Here comes the dilemma: I have been buying 'brand-name' fabrics, with hope that people will see that it is not junk, that it is done with quality in mind, and that the fabric has been tested for durability.
So far, to no avail. As I currently look for a fabric for a little loveseat, I wonder, do people care? I can buy 'no-name' fabrics for 1/2 the cost, or less. Meaning, a cheaper price to the consumer.
I understand that in reality this is what most companies have concluded. I had hoped to find a niche, who desire quality, and durability.
I asked a supplier in Los Angeles, what are you double -rub counts? 'I'm not sure, but I would guess 40k'
Is this good enough? Sounds to me like no testing was done whatsoever. Possibly made overseas, and probably would present problems.

I am lucky that designers here prefer Kravet, which I know to be quality fabric, with extensive testing done. Higher price means more people employed to make a quality product. Being that we have a local rep, I likely would not make any money at all but using the fabric, but possibly would get more local jobs.

So I ask you all for your thoughts, and possibly could you include what sort of fabric that you use? You don't have to tell me everything, just the basics.

Ian
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: MinUph on October 24, 2017, 04:17:54 PM
So now we know 65's name. Hi Ian.

  Fabrics to resell on furniture like you are trying to do doesn't really matter other than you no one will ever ask or care. I should say 95% of people won't. As for selling fabrics for the trade to put on customers furniture this does matter.  One there is more profit in better, higher priced fabrics. 2 the companies tend to stand behind their products, and three you can get special pricing sometimes. They will work with you. The double rub thing is a test that I fond a helpful tool to tell durability. 40,000 is a good number 10000 and below is not so good. Anything over 40000 or 50000 foesnt really matter any more. That's how I have been made to understand the testing. So 1000000 while it sounds and looks good isn't all that much better than say 40000. Most people will change fabric by then anyway.
  So go with name brand companies for you fabric sales and anything that looks good on the stuff your trying to sell. Just dont use ugly fabric.
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: 65Buick on November 06, 2017, 04:44:11 PM
Hi Paul, I thought I said my name once before.

I went ahead and ordered the velvet. It is Kravet, a preferred fabric by my area designers. Being a remnant, it was an incredible price.

So my question now is about the decking. I have a decking that a little looser weave. Being that it is velvet, I wondered if that is a better choice than the traditional decking that is used now, which is a quite smooth. I have noticed on my home sofa that the cushions constantly move forward.
In lieu of this, am I better to use the looser weave in hope that the cushion will not move forward?

The nap is to be run down the piece, correct?
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: MinUph on November 06, 2017, 05:34:16 PM
Ian,
  Velvet should run from top to bottom on the back, back to front on the seat cushion and generally down on the rest. Cushions can move forward for a couple reasons. The front seat section should be slightly higher than the deck this helps hold a cushion in. Velvets may tend to walk forward. The deck cloth should be of good grade. It doesn't really matter other than durability.
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: 65Buick on November 13, 2017, 01:24:44 PM
Thanks for that, Paul.
I've decided I'm going to run the fabric RR. Does this mean I should do the same for the cushion?
And also the apron (the front facing directly under the seat)?

This is going to be a killer piece.
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: SteveA on November 13, 2017, 04:57:02 PM
Ian this is an interesting market you have exposure to.  The ability to apply a fabric of your choice  vs customer selects fabric of their liking -
I guess you have to stay neutral and have a sense what's popular in your area ?
SA
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: 65Buick on November 13, 2017, 08:17:16 PM
Steve - well, that's the plan. Upholster pieces with a lower price tag than some of the high-end stuff.
And, use it as a showcase to gain commission work.

Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: 65Buick on November 15, 2017, 08:11:19 PM
Well folks looks like supplies should arrive tomorrow. Got lots going on in my head as I think about how to approach this piece.

I think I'm set on the velvet nap issue as I don't want any seams on the IB. So really, everything else is based off that decision.

I'll probably have a few more questions as I go.
Assuming I run my nap side to side (RR) on the seat, would I do the same for the apron?
We had a discussion a while ago about this; the part of the frame directly in front of the seat.
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: MinUph on November 15, 2017, 08:32:03 PM
Velvet will shade based on the direction of the nap. If you RR it one place rr it everywhere. Don't mix it up. I know you have decided on doing this and that is all well and good. It is your business. But if this is a true Velvet the cushion will be walking in response to the direction of the nap. Good luck. If the piece isn't used much it won't really matter. But anyway run it all in the same direction.
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: 65Buick on November 16, 2017, 10:36:01 AM
Hmm. Either seam the IB or RR everything. Not the greatest of decisions but one I imagine comes up often.

Still have work to do before I begin cutting fabric.

What would you do? You would seam IB, Paul?
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: MinUph on November 16, 2017, 12:25:05 PM
Yes probably would seam the back if it is real velvet.
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: kodydog on November 16, 2017, 09:48:59 PM
If I remember correctly the loveseat you are getting ready to upholster has a tufted back. The back was curved and flowed into the arms that were also tufted. Can you post another picture?

I think you said you were going to eliminate the tufting. In this case you will need to add seams in that corner where the back meets the arms. If the back is less then 54" wide and you seam it at the arms you can cut the pattern up the bolt.

I can't remember if there is one cushion or two but if the back is wider then 54" then how will you piece the back? If you piece it at the ends and then add seams in the corners where the back meets the arms it will look odd. You will have two seams right next to each other. If there are two cushions you could piece it in the middle where the cushions meet. But this may look odd also.

I'm stating this all from memory. I can't remember where I saw your post with the picture. But I'm thinking the only way you can make it work is to RR it.
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: 65Buick on November 17, 2017, 05:06:40 PM
Hi Kody,

This is the piece. I called it 'banana boat' but now that it's going to be blue I need a different name.
http://gdurl.com/Ng_J

I understand what Paul is saying in terms of the nap. But in this instance I believe I will RR it. It will also be tufted.

I also was dumb and threw out the old decking. If I'm not mistaken it looks like I would tack underneath the front and then pull it to the back. I can see some very small pleats underneath the cushion.

I bought some supplies from Rostov and they're all here now so I can begin.
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: kodydog on November 18, 2017, 08:41:06 AM
I'm sure you know this piece will be a challenge. Whoever did it last time did a really sloppy job. Do not rush through the tufting. Take your time, ask lots of questions and after you finish each pleat step back and see if it meets your satisfaction. Be very careful when poking the buttons into the fabric. Make sure you have it exactly where it needs to go. Velvet is very unforgiving if you need to move a button after you have poked it through the fabric.

There is a way to cut this love seat up the bolt. It would involve either piecing the cushion (a seam several inches in on each end) or changing it to two cushions. The back can be pieced also, although difficult the fabric ends can be folded into the pleats. There is no way around piecing the seat front if you cut the fabric up the bolt.

Good luck, keep us posted.
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: 65Buick on November 18, 2017, 04:55:35 PM
I am fully aware that this piece will bring my upholstery to the next level.
I am pretty sure it was done quickly in a factory, and some of the buttons were loose. Hence the sloppy effect.
I think you are now understanding the nap issue. However, the seat is just a few inches shorter than the width of the fabric.
As you mentioned, the front apron is not.
I know this piece will probably aggravate me but I need it to improve my upholstery skills.
The spring tying and all that will take a few days before I'm even ready too cut fabric.
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: MinUph on November 18, 2017, 06:21:41 PM
OK, So the cushion can be done in one piece. Why would you want to RR the fabric then? The back can be done in three sections. Tuft the center section first and add the sides to it. No sewing just folding and hiding the folds. When you get to the points on the center section leave the buttons at the edges out until you get the ends in place then the folds will all be made down as they should be. Or seeing it is you first one you can tuft the whole center and just use twine ties where the patching in will be and us buttons on the side sections over the twines. You will have a much better piece and actually it will tuft easier being the nap is running down.
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: 65Buick on November 18, 2017, 07:45:28 PM
yikes. Is there a way you can use paint and draw on my image? That's a lot to digest. Got a little time though.
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: baileyuph on November 18, 2017, 08:24:14 PM
This project will or could be an education.  I have always done a back like this by computing the
diamond size and creating the back to go on in three sections. Often the thee sections were created
and sewn together before installation with the buttons, etc.

In analysis, the tufted back can be closely looked at to see how it was done (look/feel for seams at the
corner tufts).  We never RR a velvet on a job like this (or any fabric).

This piece of furniture can draw a lot of respect when finished, if attention is focused.

The cushion deck springs are........coils? 

The skirt, one's imagination can see a piece of art work about to happen there.  The small pleats
on each side -  (some are sewn and I have seen them folded when making the deck side to side seam).  I suspect the pleats are sewn??

Oh, while investigating the coil spring question and are able, check the filler in the backrest (tuft area).  This could give decent clues on the date of manufacture?  This piece could date around early
60's.  Have fun and hope you learn a lot.

Like said, this is the project!

All eyes are on it.

Douyle
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: MinUph on November 18, 2017, 08:52:33 PM
yikes. Is there a way you can use paint and draw on my image? That's a lot to digest. Got a little time though.
http://www.minichillosupholstery.com/temp/tuft.jpg

See if that makes sense.
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: 65Buick on November 19, 2017, 12:08:47 PM
Doyle,

I don't believe it is that old. The backrest was formed using marshall springs, foam, and cotton.
Additionally, synthetic burlap was used for the coil spring base (seat) and for the backrest too.
I would estimate this piece is probably less than 30 years old.
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: 65Buick on November 23, 2017, 01:04:33 PM
yikes. Is there a way you can use paint and draw on my image? That's a lot to digest. Got a little time though.
http://www.minichillosupholstery.com/temp/tuft.jpg

See if that makes sense.

Still don't understand.
First, use twine under first layer for indentation?
2nd normally pieced fabric around inside curve is angled slightly. Being velvet it would show.
3rd am I sewing the pieces together?
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: MinUph on November 23, 2017, 04:25:55 PM
yikes. Is there a way you can use paint and draw on my image? That's a lot to digest. Got a little time though.
http://www.minichillosupholstery.com/temp/tuft.jpg

See if that makes sense.

Still don't understand.
First, use twine under first layer for indentation?
This is just a loop of twine instead of a button. The next section (add on) will be where the button is used to cover the looped twine

2nd normally pieced fabric around inside curve is angled slightly. Being velvet it would show.
You would run this piece of velvet parallel to the front of the arm or perpendicular to the seat. It will be running in the proper direction. Note: if you RR the fabric this will be running up hill when you get to this area.

3rd am I sewing the pieces together?
No sewing together. Just folding in the diamonds to mate with center section where the looped twines are.


If I remember I will take pictures of the next job this applies to.
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: 65Buick on November 23, 2017, 05:34:31 PM
Cool. I looked around on youtube & in my books but couldn't find anything.
Still have a few more things to do prep-wise before I get to the velvet.
Title: Re: Name brand, designer fabrics or not?
Post by: MinUph on November 23, 2017, 06:23:24 PM
There are many things you won't find on Youtube.
  I hope you understand now what I am saying. If not let me know.