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January 16, 2019, 10:21:58 AM
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Topics - gene

Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 25
General Discussion / Upholstery video
« on: January 11, 2019, 08:23:25 PM »

No cutting table. Uses the floor.

No saw horses. Uses the floor.

Bare feet.

Manual stapler.

Paul would have a fit with the foam cutter this guy uses.

Regular hammer for decorative tacks.

No cotton or poly batting.

Contact cement for the foam.

Did I mention bare feet?

Corded electric screw driver.

My knees hurt just watching him sit sitting on the floor and getting up and sitting on the floor and getting up...


General Discussion / Happy New Year
« on: December 31, 2018, 11:31:01 AM »
Today is the last opportunity I will have this year to work at my shop. I'm going to take advantage of this opportunity and spend a few quiet hours working on four wooden Danish modern chair seats by BÝrge Mogensen.

Here's a toast to 2019 being the best year yet for everyone.


General Discussion / Exercise/work out equipment
« on: December 26, 2018, 11:44:49 AM »
I have someone wanting me to recover pads on exercise equipment at a neighborhood rec center.

I have not done this before. I'm thinking there is a vinyl that is used specifically for this. The best I can find is from Miami Corp called Tuff Stuff but it has a textured pattern on it and the old vinyl is smooth.

Do you know of specific vinyls used for this and what is the source?

Thank you,


General Discussion / Buckminster Upholstery new videos.
« on: November 30, 2018, 10:29:05 PM »
Buckminster Upholstery has a few new videos. I enjoy his work.



General Discussion / Banquette cushions
« on: November 21, 2018, 05:46:37 AM »
Delivery today for new banquette cushions. 5 sided banquette in a house - brand new build. The seat cushion is one piece. The back cushion was originally one piece that wrapped around beautifully. It looked great but it did not fit. I had to redo it into 5 separate back cushions. I'm really disappointed but I had no choice. I went with Paul's suggestion to use 2" hook and loop to attach the back cushions to the wall.

The fabric takes 6 months to order and then another 2 months to have a plastic coating put over the fabric. They wanted it for Thanksgiving tomorrow.

What I did wrong with the back cushion: First I made accurate measurements. The 5 back wooden panels flair up because the carpenters did not make things square. One panel is 21" across the bottom and 23" across the top, and 14" high, for example. I made a paper template for the seat cushions, and then I used the measurements on the paper template for the back cushion instead of using my notes/measurements for the back cushion.

This may be the worst mistake I've made. I was cruising along enjoying my deadlines for the holiday season and then this happened. I'm now backed up and working Sundays for the rest of the year - and a few hours on Thanksgiving day.

I'll post pictures if it turns out OK.


General Discussion / velcro a cushion to the wall
« on: October 30, 2018, 08:45:14 AM »
I'm making cushions for a 5 sided kitchen banquet. The seat cushion is no problem. I made a paper template as my guide. It's a one piece boxed cushion.

The back cushion is one cushion also. It is shaped to fit the 5 back sides of the banquet. SteveA mentioned using velcro to attach the back cushion to the wall. If I make a boxed cushion that is shaped to the 5 back panels, what is the best way to apply the velcro?

Can I use sticky back velcro on the vinyl boxed cushion and wood frame?
Is it best to add some staples to the velcro on the wood frame?
Is it best to sew the velcro onto the boxed cushion?
Is 2" wide velcro OK?
Run pieces of velcro across the top of the 5 panels and down the two ends?

I've not done this before so I appreciate your thoughts and past experiences.


General Discussion / Customer won't pay.
« on: October 29, 2018, 08:46:03 AM »
My first ever customer who refuses to pay their bill. It's about 2 months late. My terms have always been 50% with the order and the remainder paid when the job is finished.

I know I'm lucky that this is the first one. It happens to way too many small business owners.

It's a furniture store and my only advantage is that I have their fabric for a few upcoming jobs. I need to be paid before we talk about this fabric or any upcoming jobs.

It's easy to speculate why they aren't paying: no cash flow, they feel thsy it's not a priority, ??? I'm staying away from guessing and only focusing on the issue of I haven't been paid.

One recourse will be to sue in small claims court and then sell my judgement to a collection agency for a percentage of the amount. I don't know if I would want to take the time and have another filing fee to get a court order to force them to pay the small claims court judgement. As an LLC in my state I can do both of these things myself without a lawyer. 

At this point I have decided that if they pay me, all future jobs will be cash with order.

And I do have email correspondence where they said they would send me a check that day, which was 5 weeks ago. My latest emails have gone unanswered.

The cost of doing business.


General Discussion / Fabric backing
« on: September 17, 2018, 09:32:17 PM »
A customer has an embroidered fabric about 2' by 2" that was his mom's, and he wants me to cover a foot stool with it. It needs cleaning and the dry cleaning company told him if he gets a backing put on the embroidered fabric they will try to clean it.

Does anyone have experience with this? I can buy fusible iron on backing and I think that would work OK, but I'm not sure. I'm just hoping someone has some experience with this.



General Discussion / woodworking
« on: August 27, 2018, 08:50:53 PM »
Here's a video on making a guitar that I recently watched. It's from 2016.


Here's a video blog on rebuilding a 1911 wooden ship. This is a current project.


I found both of these to be fascinating. I watched them over the last few weeks. We may be the last generation to truly appreciate fine craftsmanship made by people and not machines.


General Discussion / Great idea for cutting foam!
« on: August 16, 2018, 07:58:24 AM »
Do not try this at home! Or in your shop!

I've been using an electric carving knife to cut my foam. I've gotten pretty good at it and I don't think I cut enough foam to justify buying a Bosch or other cutter made specifically for cutting foam.

I sharpen the blades on my electric carving knife and over the years they got worn to the point where I was going to get a new one. Then I had this great idea!

I've cut foam a few times by holding a hack saw blade in my hand. It works well but is tiring on my hand. So, I epoxied a hack saw blade to one of the worn out electric carving knife blades. What a great idea! Unfortunately, it does not work. I think the hack saw blade is moving too fast with it's small teeth and it just does not cut the foam. I was so proud of myself just before failure entered my world. Sometimes reality is harsh and uncaring.

General Discussion / Shredded polyurethane for bean bag chair
« on: August 13, 2018, 08:56:20 PM »
I am going to make a baseball bean bag chair for my grandson. It will be two panels of white fabric sewn together, and then I'll use a soft red cord to make it look like there are stitches. And yes for those of you who are going to ask, it will have 108 stitches.

What do you think of using shredded polyurethane foam for the stuffing? I've got scraps around the shop.

I remember talking about shredding foam years ago but I don't remember what was said. I've got a wood chipper that shreds sticks up to 3" in diameter. Do you think this would work on poly foam?

Any thoughts on a type of fabric? I don't like using white but it's a baseball, what can I do. If it gets scratches and stains on it I'll just tell people it was one of Joe Niekro's baseballs. :-)



General Discussion / Furniture feet
« on: July 03, 2018, 08:56:28 PM »
I have two love seats that the customer wants me to raise up three inches. The feet are part of the frame, not the kind that unscrew. What is the best way to add three inches to the feet? I googled it but could only find people using the screw on feet.

One thought I had was to cut the feet off flush with the bottom of the frame and screw on a metal plate that receives the bolt from feet that  screw into the plate.

I'm also wondering how often do you raise the feet on furniture. Is this something that you mention to people as an added item to your estimate? A lot of the older furniture is really low to the ground.



General Discussion / Inquiring minds want to know!
« on: June 28, 2018, 09:49:45 PM »
1. Do you use contact cement in your upholstery work? How often if you do, and for what types of projects?

2. I glue a mortise and tenon joint, or a dowel joint, and clamp it until the glue dries. Or, I glue a mortise and tenon joint, or a dowel joint, clamp it, put a brad nail or two into the tenon or dowels, and then take the clamp off. Will the second technique be just as good as the first?

3. How often are you able to work on personal projects at work, or do never make the time for such things?

4. How often do you use fabric adhesive, if at all? I needed to make 8 straps for back cushions today that are held to the chair frame with these straps, so the straps are visible. I cut them out and was going to sew them, but then thought of using fabric glue. For this application, the fabric glue was much faster.

5. For those of you who have been doing upholstery for a long time, is there a type of furniture upholstery that you no longer see that you enjoyed doing?

Thank you for indulging my inquiring mind.


General Discussion / Attached back cushions to the wall
« on: June 15, 2018, 08:51:54 AM »
I have a built in banquette that will have 5 back rest cushions attached to the wall. The cushions will be made with a wood substrate. What hardware would you use to attach the cushions? There is a decorative wood lip over the back area so I am not able to slide the cushions downward to install. I will need to push the cushions straight onto the wall.

Thank you,


General Discussion / JoAnn Fabrics
« on: June 15, 2018, 08:49:22 AM »
I was in JoAnn Fabrics yesterday. I told the lady cutting my lining that I'm an upholsterer. She wanted my business card because she said she has customers all the time wanting an upholsterer. She said customers come in all the time buying fabric for a DIY project and then come back because they got in over their heads and are looking for someone to finish the project. And she said she has customers who want to buy their fabric but want to find an upholsterer first.

I did not give her my business card. My thinking is that someone sees a new cheap sofa for $500. They think they can save money by reupholstering their sofa themselves. They find out that they do not have the skills to do the reupholstery, or that it is too hard. They then find out that an upholsterer will charge double what they can pay for that new cheap sofa.

If I gave JoAnn's my business card, I believe I would get a steady stream of phone calls and texts asking me for advise and estimates, but not one piece of business.

Do you agree or disagree with my assessment?


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