Thursday, April 15, 2010

From Nuclear to Neutral. Is there such a thing as stalking furniture?

The hubs and I have been slowly replacing all our furniture with mid century modern pieces. I have been haunting every vintage, thrift, and estate sale within 50 miles for the last 3 years.  Is there such a thing as stalking furniture? 

Yes, I know its on its side up in the air in my sisters garage but its the only "before" picture I have :) Notice the colonial hiccup in the middle?

My sister happened upon this little sofa along with a gorgeous vintage 60's desk at our local Goodwill Store.  This baby is so similar to the beautiful sleek couch my grandmother gave me right after college (which I thought was icky, stupid-stupid-stupid!) I just had to have it for the amazing price of $53!  It was a bit of a risk though as I didn't know if my upholstery guru could dispatch the nasty early american bastardized bit they stuck in the middle.  I mean seriously, who mixed those styles back then??? As much as I love turquoise, there was no salvaging the scratchy nylon fabric it wore, sort of like your Uncle Lester's "OMG! What were you thinking?" sport coat.  

Reclaimed and Re-upholstered.

So what's a girl to do when she needs 11 yards of rich wool neutral fabric to swath such a gem in? (We've moved so many times I feel obligated to go neutral on the big pieces. It makes it so much easier to slip them into whatever home we've landed in.)  I really wanted wool felt ($66/yd YIKES$$) but knowing that was way past our shoe string budget I started searching for a viable sub.  Woolrich Woolen Mill came to the rescue. They sell bolts of heavy wool felt coating fabric designed for the Civil War Re-enactment crowd.  A bolt is 15 yards so I have 4 left over in case someone ruins a cushion.  I instantly went from $66 per yard to $11.75!  They sent me 1x2" pieces of every sample and I ended up doing 2 couches in 2 different colors.  One in a heathery grey and the other in a flat grey with a gold undertone.  (The lovely orange monster below was purchased for $5 at the last day of a local sale.)

Another nylon 8" behemoth in need of a makeover.

On a side note, I spent nearly every vacation as a child tromping around from one battlefield to another.  My father's idea of the perfect holiday was finding every Civil War ground of engagement within 800 miles.  My aversion to the subject is beyond expression, because of course at age 8, I wanted Disneyland :p 

Woolrich to the rescue again.

I can't forget arthur (god I wish I could forget arthur), the little buggar is now trying to infiltrate my head with nagging doubts.  You'd think he'd have enough fun ravaging my joints wouldn't you?  Well enough of that. I started listing our cast offs on craigslist to eliminate clutter and made some headway in sorting 30 years of family photos to muzzle the little parasite.  I may physically feel like crap today but its still an 8, here's to spitting in your eye arthur. 


Christina said...

The couches look great! I am sometimes really bad about seeing past something and envisioning what it could be. But i'm getting better at it. Although, i'm not sure if I would have done as well as you obviously did with these couches! So fun!

denise said...

Wow! although I do love the vintage style (bastardized or not) and colors -- these look amazing with the changes and totally updated for 'now' yet still retaining the retro feel. Good job! Great job at hunting down the fabric (which I'm sure feels just glorious) and at a more affordable price? win, win.

SogniSorrisi said...

They look amazing!

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Aron said...

That is quite a transformation!

kimberj said...

Just an FYI... I removed those 2 comments because they were ads from payday loan companies that somehow spammed my blog :(