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: My first experience with upholstery  ( 13382 )
sawdustar
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« : September 02, 2010, 11:52:02 PM »

I have my Great Grandmother's old rocking chair. She traded 2 of her paintings and some items she made for this chair....MANY year ago. Granny Bolton sat in this chair every day and I remember seeing her in this chair for as far back as I can remember. It was then handed down to my Grandmother and then my parents didn't want the chair and I said I wanted it because it was comfortable and it was from my Great Grandparents old place. As best I can find out, this chair is between 70 & 90 years old. We used it here in our home until the duct tape ceased to hold the upholstery together any more.











I found all kinds of stuff inside this chair. Some old beads that Granny used to string beads to make stuff with, old safety pins like the ones she used to help hold her cooking apron on her dress while she cooked, old pennies, and even a piece of an old envelope that was wadded up down inside the chair that had a small ball of cotton thread safely tucked away for safe keeping.
You see, they lived through the Great Depression...and they kept EVERYTHING, no matter how trivial and useless it seemed....they kept it. More about all this later on I guess.

But now, you see what I'm starting with and yes, this is my very first upholstery work of anything more than a simple seat cushion. May be more than I've bargained for, but this chair was family for many years and I'm just cut from the cloth where family passes on family. So.....I have this chair and I'm going to make it useful and pretty again for my kids to pass on to their kids. (I hope) :D
« : September 03, 2010, 02:45:38 PM sawdustar »

Thanks a Bunch,
Dennis Peacock
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« #1 : September 03, 2010, 06:25:29 AM »

Good luck and keep us posted with the progress.  Be sure to take plenty of pictures from different angles as you take it apart.  That will help when putting things back together.

There's lot's of help on this forum, so don't be scared to ask questions!

Also, try reading the picture posting sticky.  Try posting clickable thumbs.  That way we can see what you're talking about while we're reading, and can click on it for a bigger picture and more detail.

http://get-up-and-go.com/upholstery-forum/index.php?topic=7472.0

BTW....Welcome!

Bobby
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Mojo
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« #2 : September 03, 2010, 07:21:08 AM »

Awesome Dennis.  Be sure and keep us posted with pictures as you go. If you run into an issue, pop back on here and ask for help. We have some of the countries greatest furniture restorers on here.

Glad to see you getting in this upholstery trade.

Chris
sawdustar
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« #3 : September 03, 2010, 07:26:54 AM »

Thanks Bobby.!  I'll read up on picture posting and get that resolved by the weekend I hope.

Chris, that bud....I'll be on here for a bit while I muddle my way through this project. The good this is that I'm "learning to sew" and my wife has been sewing most all her life.  We just seem to have troubles controlling this cotton-pickin' clutch motor for needle speed while sewing.!

While I don't have a real nice machine, it does the trick, I just wish it would sew SLOWER for those of us just learning.!!  :D

Thanks a Bunch,
Dennis Peacock
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« #4 : September 03, 2010, 08:38:10 AM »

Thanks Bobby.!  I'll read up on picture posting and get that resolved by the weekend I hope.

Chris, that bud....I'll be on here for a bit while I muddle my way through this project. The good this is that I'm "learning to sew" and my wife has been sewing most all her life.  We just seem to have troubles controlling this cotton-pickin' clutch motor for needle speed while sewing.!

While I don't have a real nice machine, it does the trick, I just wish it would sew SLOWER for those of us just learning.!!  :D

My new machine has a servo motor and it is awesome. I love it. I can dial the speed down and stitch real slow or turn the dial up and run it like a Ferrari.

If you get to the point where you want to upgrade to a servo motor then get in touch with Bob Kovar from Toledo Sewing. I can provide you his phone number. He has some great deals on servos.

What your experiencing is the same thing that I and everyone else on here went through the first time we sat down to a commercial machine. In time the speed factor will go away and you will be sewing like a pro.

Chris
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« #5 : September 04, 2010, 08:34:37 AM »

What a cool chair, but I don't think the duct tape does much to enhance its lines, lol.  Nice that it has meaning for you, too. 

I periodically do a "deep cavity search" of the husband's chair and it never fails to turn up some interesting items that've gone missing.  The best find was the Leatherman tool that he lost about 6 mos. after purchasing it... was he ever excited when I left it on his bureau. 

sawdustar
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« #6 : September 04, 2010, 09:37:03 AM »

OK....the LOML and I now have the chair upholstery removed, down to frame, springs, and remaining padding of sorts. Found that I need to repair the stretcher board across the lower-back of the chair frame (good thing I'm a woodworker too  ;D ). We hope to start making our patterns from the old pieces Sunday afternoon (after church and a short nap  :) )

The old cotton smell of the padding inside reminds me of when my Granddaddy worked at our local cotton gin.....many years ago. Ah the memories.....  8)

Thanks a Bunch,
Dennis Peacock
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« #7 : September 04, 2010, 12:52:35 PM »

Sawduster: After you've been doing this a while, you'll stop being amazed at the things you find inside a piece of furniture.
I once stripped down a sofa that had over 90 buttons, all of them were tied off on the inside using Kotexes (or whatever the plural of Kotex is). BTW they were UNUSED, thankfully.
It used to be mostly loose change. Now it's mostly fingernail clippers, and remote controls.
I used to find a ton of pocket knives. But now, with all of the metal detectors that you have to go through every day, not as many people carry pocket knives any more.

"Perfection is the greatest enemy of profitability" - Mark Cuban
sawdustar
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« #8 : September 05, 2010, 05:34:19 AM »

Progress report:

All pieces have been removed, taken apart, and we have started to measure each piece to make sure we have enough material bought to re-cover the chair. We are also trying to figure out how much foam to buy for the back and seat...and etc, etc, etc.

Progress is being made, I'm just trying to figure out how to "figure it all out".  ???

Thanks a Bunch,
Dennis Peacock
Mojo
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« #9 : September 05, 2010, 06:43:26 AM »

Progress report:

All pieces have been removed, taken apart, and we have started to measure each piece to make sure we have enough material bought to re-cover the chair. We are also trying to figure out how much foam to buy for the back and seat...and etc, etc, etc.

Progress is being made, I'm just trying to figure out how to "figure it all out".  ???

Wait till you get a load of foam prices. YIKES. They said the foam prices went up because of oil prices a couple years ago. Now that the prices on oil is down it would be nice if they lowered the price of foam. :)

BTW, if you need to cut any foam, steal your wife's electric carving knife, spray both blades with silicone spray and use that to cut your foam. Works great. :)

Chris
sawdustar
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« #10 : September 06, 2010, 10:23:38 PM »

OK....here it what the chair looks like now.









I also have a large bag stuffed FULL of the old cotton stuffing. So soft and smells like fresh ginned cotton. Reminds me of my childhood.  ;D

Thanks a Bunch,
Dennis Peacock
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« #11 : September 07, 2010, 06:07:38 AM »

Hi

I'll be intersted to see how you get on , best of luck with it ..

 wasn't there a thread not very long ago about finding animals in old seats  ? ?

 might be worth doing a search

Rich,uk

sawdustar
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« #12 : September 08, 2010, 01:34:22 PM »

So how do I figure out what foam I need to put back in the chair? There are so many to choose from and it all means nothing to me until I read more about foam and how it's rated.

I do know that I have 2 couches in my home now. One you sit on and sink into it. It's hard to get out of and is not really comfortable at all (it was given to us for free). The other couch is one we bought about 20 years ago and has a nice firm seating and backing to it. Easy to sit on, comfy, and easy to get up off the couch.

I want this nice firm, long-lasting foam in this chair that we are working on in this thread. The old stuffing was roughly ginned cotton and a lot of burlap.

Then my next search is where to get the advised foam.

Thanks a Bunch,
Dennis Peacock
sawdustar
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« #13 : September 14, 2010, 09:12:07 AM »

OK...spring repair work is done. Frame fixes done. Covered springs with some canvas material to give the bottom and the back some smoother lines to follow with the cushions are made and mounted.

Now I'm just trying to figure out how to sew the piping/welting for the chair seat. I have 4 different feet for the Yamata and nothing written on them to tell me what they are or what size they are.

I guess I'm going to have to buy new feet for this machine so I'll know what feet to use and when. Sheesh.!!!! :-[

Thanks a Bunch,
Dennis Peacock
Mojo
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« #14 : September 14, 2010, 12:23:01 PM »

Dennis:

The welt foot that you need to sew welt with is very easy to distinguish. Look at the bottom, if it is flat it is not a welt foot. If it has a curved surface then it is a welt foot.

If you want to post pictures of all your feet for this machine that you currently have then we can help identify them for you and tell you what each one is used for.

If you need additional feet then you can give Bob Kovar a call. His prices are very good.

Post some pics and we can help you out with what you currently have.

Chris
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