Completion of this Mid-Century sofa bed in brought it’s own pleasures and heartbreaks: Producing the cover buttons broke my button pressing machine! Plus removal of the original seat/ daybed fillings revealed hair infested with a particularly vicious dust mite (they bite!)
The second of the 2 projects I completed for the 2nd BBC1 Television series of “Money For Nothing“, was a 2-seater “department store” sofa, which was saved from the rubbish tip (and potential landfill) by presenter Sarah Moore.
What started out as a concept recover working with an idea Sarah had in mind , ended up becoming (almost) a complete rip-down to the frame,repair, refurbishments , reupholstery & new concept cover.
The amount of cardboard and cheap materials used in its construction brought out the sort of language not fit for public ears , and thankfully was edited out/ “left on the cutting room floor”.
Even though I had an image in my minds eye of the overall look Sarah & I wanted to achieve it took a while for me to “get into” the overall concept.
However , I persevered and after “ripping down” removing every last piece of “rubbish” cardboard, replacing the fillings in the arms with good quality webbing, hessians, rubberised hair and new foams forming the arms. Coming up with the hand stitched leather and linen “elbow patch” arm panels and the ” raw “finished edges and leather piping and the use of a complimentary simulated suede super fabric to bring together the leather and linen elements, the rest of the sofas overall look “came into focus” fairly quickly.
Introducing nice little touches like the leather & linen scrolls on the sides of the back , and more patches finishing off the front borders’ at the corners above the rubbed down stained & beeswaxed legs, and replacing the worn out polyester fibre filled seat cushions with
high-grade, shaped ,quality foam (wrapped)cores , while at the same time making sure every element of the cover conformed to strict UK health safety & fire regulations through the use of a Flame retardent barrier cloth behind the top cover brought a rustic, raw, country feel with a superb level of comfort that thankfully, a couple were so enamoured with once they had seen and sat on it, had purchased it at Sarah’s Barnyard sale and at a “blinking good price” for the quality and labour which went into it which maybe should of sold for much more but hey, I’m just grateful that it sold at a profit which was returned to the surprised and delighted previous owner.
My heartfelt thanks go out to everyone I roped into helping me complete this particular project: Anna Frisch, Joanna Maeva, All the production team at Friel Kean Films, The Cloth Shop, my upholstery warehousemen/suppliers, Wendy Shorter, Louise at Shoreditch Design Rooms, My Dearest Louise Jinks, Nina, Jan Etoile and all my dear friends who consoled, counselled and fed me tea, biscuits, words of encouragement and support along the way.
Atelier Ray Clarke Ltd T/A Ray Clarke Upholstery & Design Company registration number :12018355
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