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Eastlake restoration

Started by kodydog, January 06, 2011, 05:02:14 am

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kodydog

Thought I might share a project I finished a few months back. This is more for the non-pros out there wondering what goes into a full blown restore job. The nice thing about these pieces is the finish is in good shape and for an Eastlake reproduction its fairly well constructed.

This is the settee before       


The springs on the chair fell through the webbing. What a mess.


Three layers of fabric.


All the old padding had to be replaced. It was very lumpy. You can see the old straw seat padding in the background.


Both pieces needed a lot of frame work.




I added corner blocks to give it more strength.


All new webbing on seat, back and arms


Eight-way hand tied the seat springs.


Cover the springs with burlap and add a little edge roll.


Sometimes on these old Eastlake pieces they upholster the outside arm halfway up the roll on the inside arm. I asked the customer if I could change this and she said go for it.


This meant adding a tack rail to the bottom of the rolled arm.


New webbing and burlap for the backs.


And abra-kadabra, restored settee and chairs with tufted backs.
There cannot be a crisis next week. My schedule is already full.
http://northfloridachair.com/index.html

206RB

Beautiful work, Kody! You really know your stuff.

mike802

Looks really good, I just love the Eastlake style.
"Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power" - Abraham Lincoln
http://www.mjamsdenfurniture.com

bobbin

I have some very cool pcs. kicking around here, Kody and watching the transformation of the the Eastlake pcs might just inspire me.  Beautiful work!

kodydog

Thanks for the complements y'all. If your going to restore them your self Bobbin you know you can count on us for help. But if your looking for a good upholsterer...
There cannot be a crisis next week. My schedule is already full.
http://northfloridachair.com/index.html

alge

Really interesting project Kody.

I've zoomed your images in photobucket as i am struggling to work out which side of the pond it was first upholstered on. Were these pieces made in the states by Eastlake? The springs and a few of the filling layers look different from any victorian furniture we get over here. Do you think that all of the three covers shown in the one shot were not originals? really interesting. That style of "church buttoning" is uncommon too, we only tend to see on early 20c Germanic pieces after Victorian Gothic. Most Upholsteres cant be bothered to do it that way.

Much better finish on the arm scroll done your way  ;)

best wishes

Alex

gene

April 18, 2011, 12:13:51 am #6 Last Edit: April 18, 2011, 12:18:52 am by gene
Great pictures even for us professionals out here.

As janycee38 said, awesome work, and thanks for sharing your pics!

gene

PS. Kodydog, it's not spam. Just think of Farmer Fran from The Water Boy

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n3wuSO59OdM
QUALITY DOES NOT COST, IT PAYS!

kodydog

April 18, 2011, 02:17:02 am #7 Last Edit: April 18, 2011, 02:18:36 am by kodydog
Quote from: alge on April 17, 2011, 09:27:40 pm
I've zoomed your images in photobucket as i am struggling to work out which side of the pond it was first upholstered on. Were these pieces made in the states by Eastlake? The springs and a few of the filling layers look different from any victorian furniture we get over here. Do you think that all of the three covers shown in the one shot were not originals? really interesting. That style of "church buttoning" is uncommon too, we only tend to see on early 20c Germanic pieces after Victorian Gothic. Most Upholsterers cant be bothered to do it that way.

Thanks Alex. I lived in Charleston SC for 10 Years and did a ton of antiques there. I've taken several classes in American antiques, and have been in the upholstery trade for 26 years. But I am far from an expert on antiques. I can tell you a lot of cheep knock offs of East Lake have been made in the U.S. over the years. This is why I was impressed with the construction and finish of these pieces. I guess if I had more time I could research it a little more. I would imagine the first layer of fabric was the original but don't remember what it looked like now.
Don't think I've ever herd the phrase "church buttoning" before. I've always called it hand tufted or diamond tufting.

Quote from: gene on April 18, 2011, 12:13:51 am
PS. Kodydog, it's not spam. Just think of Farmer Fran from The Water Boy

Wow Gene that just explains everything :D
There cannot be a crisis next week. My schedule is already full.
http://northfloridachair.com/index.html

alge

Kody

Church buttoning is where you get a mixture of buttons and flutes and the effect is like either end of a church/cathedral organ pipe as in your example, so in effect you dont get the full diamond shape as per normal.

If you follow this link you will see a chair done by Sally (one of my students) last year that is a bit more typical in style, where you get the top part of the diamond - into flute - bottom part of a diamond.

http://www.thelondonchaircollective.com/sally-bell.html

Alex

kodydog

April 19, 2011, 03:38:06 am #9 Last Edit: April 19, 2011, 03:53:21 am by kodydog
Nice web site Alex. Your people really know their craft. Love your chair gallery. Sally Bells Church Organ Chair is outstanding.

Your ETE 2009 chair by Stephanie Leclere with the bent wood arms reminds me of this Haywood Wakefield chair I found in a thrift store here in North Florida
http://www.northfloridachair.com/heywood_wakefield_chair
There cannot be a crisis next week. My schedule is already full.
http://northfloridachair.com/index.html

alge

Thanks for your kind comments (i cant take any credit for the site thats all down to Debbie and her pals), its a pleasure to be able pass on the old knowledge to students that care about craft and are making a commercial go of it and not simply into the hobby side.

The Wakefield chair is very similar in style and construction to Stephanie's by the look of the serpentine springs, I'm pretty sure this design comes from France, I've seen them a lot at their (the French) equivalent of yard sales they are (not always but) often covered in Club, Spade, Hearts and Diamonds each chair representing a suit from a pack of cards so i guess they are often used round a card playing table???

If you ever get your hand on any "old school limey junk" and want a second opinion feel free to ask, if i can help i will, I do have access to one of the country's best and most extensive furniture dedicated library's here at the University ;D

bobbin

Wow! that site it fabulous.  I love old furniture and I automatically hit the brakes when I see something set out on the kerb for collection...

(it's a disease).

kodydog

April 20, 2011, 03:42:01 pm #12 Last Edit: May 26, 2011, 03:59:17 am by kodydog
Alex I'm so glad you joined this web site. You seem to have a wealth of information on antiques and furniture in general.

I finished these two chairs a couple weeks back. The owner, US Air Force Retired, was stationed in England and ran across these pieces in an antique store. The sales lady told her they came from the Queens retreat. Of course theirs no way to verify this but I judge them to be between 90 to 120 years old. The fabric shown is not the original.  

When you sat in this chair you felt like you were sitting on the floor. I striped them to the frame. I had to raise the springs, which meant some internal frame work. The old cushion had inner springs wrapped with cotton. Replaced that with 5" foam to get the seat a little higher. The arm tops have coil springs covered with a "chicken wire" type material that I left alone except to tighten them. Most of the padding (horse hair and cotton) was shot. The only thing I left alone was the inside back padding.

Of course the casters are not original, kinda tacky, but once again the owner was trying to get the seat a little higher. I like the fabric she selected. I never enjoy working with arms that the inside, top and outside are all sewn together. It always takes several attempts to get it right. She was thrilled and gave us two Morris chairs to recover in leather.

Quote from: bobbin on April 20, 2011, 12:17:37 am
Wow! that site it fabulous.  I love old furniture and I automatically hit the brakes when I see something set out on the kerb for collection...

Bobbin you and my wife could spend hours going through antique and thrift stores in one of these historic southern towns.
There cannot be a crisis next week. My schedule is already full.
http://northfloridachair.com/index.html

alge

The Queens retreat? Balmoral castle??

Whether they were or not they are a sweet pair of chairs for sure. The construction you described is absolutely spot on typical for what i would expect from a chair made in the mid to back end of the 30's poss early 40's. This is a tricky area to pinpoint as the war effort blurred availability of frames etc. so sometimes you get frames that were made in say 37-38 but got upholstered in 45 after the labour force returned and the goods were making it through again. Definitely not much earlier with those fat arms and the spring system within.

The quality shows for sure though and if they were commissioned by the upper-classes as i'm sure they were they could have been made anyway war or not. The fluted columns on the facings are really quite unique, i have a pair at home that are not as nice and grand as these are but mine have a table hidden in the arm.

I love sprung cushions but they are a pain to reconstruct, funnily enough i use a technique you guys gave us when i replace them, which is the feather cushion with foam insert, only in the last five years have these become more readily available over here.

Alex