Saturday, March 29, 2014

My Settee Project (Part 1) Choosing Fabric

I originally picked up this settee (loveseat) off Kijiji (for those who aren't familiar, it's an online classifieds site similar to Craigslist) for 30$ a few months ago.

When I first saw it at the seller's house (which was conveniently just a few blocks away), I knew it had a fairly decent frame, coils (which are the best) and I liked the overall shape and size. 30$ was a huuuuge bargain, and I picked it up with Mom.

I've been enjoying it and using it in my living room since I bought it, but now it was time to redo it.

Although the current upholstery was pretty recent, I knew that the sofa had problems, and everything would have to go. The entire seat was all lumpy, and some of the spring ties inside were loose. The frame joints were also loose, so the frame would need to be knocked-apart and repaired.

Someone had also poorly/roughly sanded all the finish and stain off the legs, and I wanted to get them back to their original dark mahogany colour.


But before I even started working on the sofa, I had the very difficult time of browsing through fabric choices. If you've ever had to pick a wall paint, this is just as bad, or worse. I don't think you guys can imagine the sheer number of fabric books we have at the shop. Probably around 200 or more books, each having anywhere from 20-100 fabric samples each. Prices range from around 20$/yard to hundreds of dollars per yard (150$+). An average price is generally 40-60$/yard for a high quality fabric with good wear.

Since I wanted a high-end, but decently priced fabric, I limited my choices between 2 or 3 companies (which was still around 50+ books). The following are some of the choices I was mulling over. I had thought of going with something fairly bold, possibly geometric. I also needed something that would work with my green living room, but that could also work in another room if I decided to move it (or get a larger couch, or if I repaint to a different colour, etc). I decided I should pick something either red, yellow/gold, green, black/white/grey or beige/taupe.

This one had a beautiful velvety texture, but I was worried the white would get dirty too easily (and it's a pretty "intense" pattern).

This was lovely.

This one was nice, but maybe a bit too modern for me, and again, I worried that the white may get dirty too easily.

These three were under serious consideration for about a week before I made my final choice. I really loved the red (or the yellow version of the same fabric - see below) on the right, but I didn't like the shiny/silky type feel of the fabric. The centre fabric is one that I REALLY liked, but the wear was only 9000 double rubs (which is considered "medium").

I was thinking of going with the yellow on the left, and doing a chair for the same room in this red damask.

I ended up nixing the above choices (either due to wear or because I just didn't like the look or feel of the fabric) and then pondered these two. I love both of them, but the green one was too much of a yellowish/celery colour that clashed with my green walls (see below), and the geometric one was going to look much too modern for me.

In the end, after a LOT of frustration, indecision, and doubt, I ended up picking this one.

It's a medium sized print, has good wear, it's similar to what's on the sofa currently (which I don't mind), it's somewhat period looking for the piece, and it has a nice feel to it. It also doesn't clash with my green walls, and the colours won't show dirt too much, so I don't need to be constantly worried about ruining it. It pretty much crossed everything off my list. Another small side note is that I could still use some red (or yellow) throw pillows on the sofa to give a punch of colour to the room.

Continued in Part 2!

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