Saturday, December 31, 2011

Finally an Update...

Both for myself and the vendor... who I mentioned months ago has gotten their website up and running.  Check out the Gustav Carroll line, specifically the console tables.  Really, really, nice.

See you all next year!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Something Pretty...

 Here is a little bit from a job I am nearly finished with.  Just a few last little things to take care of.  I am posting a larger post on a different blog, but I figured I would share some here too.

These two turned out perfectly!
I like how the stripes look on the curve, but I really like how they look on the double welt.
Check out my blog Decorating Basics to see more pictures of the rest of the work.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Been a long time, too long...

Sorry about the long time between posts, I will see what I can do to remedy that in the coming weeks.  Meanwhile the new Kyle Bunting Rug book is out.  Have a gander:

Monday, October 10, 2011

Just something I saw in a store...

Please excuse the quality of the photo, this was a quick picture I took in a hurry.  It was one of those places that you drive by all the time and think "someday I'm gong to stop and go in there".  I did, and by did I like a lot of the stuff.  I have this tendency to get really excited and then when I go to make a purchase find that less of the items are really up to my standards that an first blush.  This piece passed muster.  100% silk and hand woven (or so I am told).  They want more than I care to pay for it, but it is nice.  Wonder what the guy would say if I insisted on a burn test?  Last 100% silk piece I bought I had to explain to them was actually 100% Viscose.  they tried to argue, but the tag on the back was pretty convincing ;)

A blue tree, how perfect for our Dining room!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Fit for a Queen...

Or at least a Princess.  I am going to turn this stripe into three sets of drapes.  The whole concept is very regal, and many of the pieces we looked at actually are from French documents.  If I haven't said it enough, I LOVE Fortuny.  So as long as we are looking at Palaces I figured I would throw in a castle.  Can anyone guess where the bottom picture is from?  I'll tell you in the caption.

Left Stroheim and Romann Connoisseur Versallies collection. Right bottom Fabricut Vignettes collection.
A few of the other options we looked at.
This is inside Cinderella Castle at Walt Disney World.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Dos A Dos...

 Since I mention this item to clients all the time I figured I would put up a picture.  This is the Scalamandre Dos A Dos.   If you have a small space that could use something to sit on...and maybe you would like a little more romance and whimsy in your life...think about it, that's all I'm saying.

Eat dates dripping with honey on me...
P.S.  Get date honey on my and you'll be sleeping on the couch.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Here is a bit from today...

Can you believe that these aren't even the nicest options?!  I can't wait to show you what we've picked.  Hint: Versailles.  
Sofa in burlap...needs a new face.
Here are some of the options for the room.
If you look hard you can actually see one of the pieces for the chairs that sit opposite.  In about a week I will be going back to discuss the curtains and pillows.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

A matter of perspective...

I would just like to take a moment to remind everyone who has me out to their house that this is is what I expect to see.  If your piece did not look like this then I and my coworkers would be out on the street.  Don't be embarrassed, be proud that you are helping keep dozens of people employed.

This one is going to look great when I'm done.
Have some upholstery that needs help?  Leave a comment or e-mail.  We're glad to help.

Monday, August 22, 2011

A few things I saw on my vacation...

very year my wife and I go camping, and there are loads of vendors selling all sorts of craft goods where we are.  We actually met there many years ago as I had been hired to help a merchant man their store.  And as I am sure you could have guessed, yes it was textile related.  

Sneak Preview

I will begin with a horn carver.  First let me start off by telling you that this lady does work so nice that as soon as she opens her shop she sells out all the pieces she's done in the last year.  So these pictures are actually in the back before she has opened up on day 1.
Zoom in, you know you want to click it.
Here they are out front.  They are all unique and beautifully done.  She also does shot-glass sizes as well as blowing horns.  Just in case you have ever had the desire to scream "Release the Hounds!"

A different angle.

And these next two pictures display a technique that is often used in more complex Welsh Love Spoons.  And in case you don't know what a Welsh Love Spoon is, it is I would suggest you ask my good friend Google, and then pick one up for your next anniversary.  there is a store on Main street in Warrenton that sells them.

Yup, that's a cat catching a mouse.  Free floating, see the next picture. 

This one didn't even make it to the show.  Her mom bought it before it left  the workroom.  Can't say I blame her.

Here is a tiny little piece of metal work that I really like.  I'm not sure what I would do with it. Maybe I could use it on a necklace, or just sew them onto a bag? Ah!  I could add it to the end of my wife's cell-phone lanyard.

You are really gong to need to zoom in to get a good look at these.
Finally I will leave you with this.  The sign could certainly have been nicer (presentation counts); but it is still an interesting piece.

Someone tell that man how much silver costs per ounce.
P.S.  Here is a bonus picture.  It was taken at night, so the quality is quite poor.

Can-kilts.  Tacky, but I'll allow it.  Too bad they don't make them in MacIntosh.

Monday, August 15, 2011

It's been a while...

I have been out for a couple of weeks, and I have a few pictures that I will certainly be sharing when I get them all downloaded.  But until then...Here is the completed chair!  My client was nice enough to send me a before and an after pic.    I can barely tell which is which.



Saturday, July 30, 2011

The chair is done, and awaiting delivery...

I can't wait to see how it turned out.  I wasn't able to get over to see it yesterday, and I won't be here when it is delivered on Tuesday.  Sigh.  I will just have to be patient.



Monday, July 25, 2011

Does it pay...

One of these is $200/yd the other is $20/yd.  I can tell the difference; but I don't know if it is $180/yd different.  Sometimes it is worth spending the extra, sometimes it isn't.  There is a HUGE durability difference between them; but you have to ask yourself, could I reupholster the piece two or three times over for less than buying the more expensive one?  Ultimately my client went with the more expensive one.  Want to see the finished product?

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

The perfect solution...

I was helping a client today and she asked me what I would use if I were doing the windows for myself.  I took this to mean "If you could do anything you wanted what would it be?"

The room has neutral walls and two oriental rugs on the floor.  Other than that it is dominated by a four posted bed with a German lace canopy.  Dark wood abounds but it is pretty much a blank slate.  We started the day with the intent of doing a dust ruffle and chose a box pleated dust ruffle in an off-white sateen.  The windows were an unexpected addition.

Three colors sprung to my mind the green, pink, and cream.    The client loves pink, and loves embroidered silk. The style has to be a Kingston valance with tails.  Long slender tails.  The fabric?  I would like to use Lady Washington from Fabricut's Mount Vernon collection.  I've used it before. I'll post it as well as a link.

Hope Martha would be proud.

Now the real question, which color to use?

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

I really like how these turned out...

Sometimes you can take a garage sale find and turn it into something really spectacular.  I can't decide which I like better.  The stripe is fantastic, classic and sophisticated.  The floral is unique and makes quite a statement in my opinion.  There was a chair down at the design center that I saw somewhat like it, but this one is mine (well, my work anyway).

The sheers in the background are actually an open weave linen should anyone care.  Try taking a picture of that on a sunny day!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Asian, Oriental, Chinoiserie...

Here is the blog post from one of my other blogs:

If you like an asian motif then this is relevant to your interests.  That being said why is it so hard to find good Far Eastern stuff?  There is a certain company that has a beautiful $400/yd piece that I like, but other than that there is a need that is not being filled.  Maybe my friends over at Jim Thompson or Fabricut would like to help me out?  As far as that fabric I can't tell you who the company is, but their name rhymes with Deakon Pill...

Friday, July 1, 2011


To clean or not to clean, that is the question.  I was given a beautiful bowl by my parents, and we went back and forth over whether or not it should be cleaned.  Normally here (the US) we prefer to preserve the patina.  Overseas the preference varies.  This type of piece is normally cleaned, and as such we decided to clean it.


Extra clean.

One more, this time with lemon scent.

The best part is if we give it a little while then the patina will come right back.  No harm, everyone wins.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Faux Fur...

As someone who has worked with real hides I can tell you not only is fake fur cruelty free, it is also symmetrical, free from holes, and available in just about any pattern or color you want.  Running between $20 - $150/yd a two yard piece backed in either lightweight suede or cashmere makes a perfect blanket for your bed or throw for the couch.

You know you want to touch them.

And since I am asked all the time "What do you have?"  My wife and I have three of these we use as bedding, two in suede, one in cashmere.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Just a quick one today...

I almost entitled this "Too much?"  but the answer is no.  That's one fine looking reupholstered chair.  I can't wait until the velvet room dividers are done.  I don't have explicit written permission to tell you whose fabric that it, but I'll give you a hint.  It rhymes with Island Shmort.  E-mail me if you can't figure it out, or want some.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The work continues

Today in the mail I received the restored piece from Mair Oriental Rug Services.  It looks great and I immediately ran it over to the workroom so that work could commence.  The chair is going to need new padding and spring retying.  Then the fabric is going to have to be very carefully put back on (we will likely attach it to another backing to help stabilize and strengthen it).  Finally new flat braid (gimp) and decorative tacks will have to be put on the whole chair.  By replacing all the flat braid and tacks we will maintain a uniform look rather than trying to match the old ones (which will never be quite right).  I can't wait for the finished product!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The latest update...

Here is what Doug Mair ( has done with the damaged needlepoint:

Can you tell what happened to fix it?  I can't.  It looks original to me.

The color is near perfect (although in Canada it is colour).

They went in and rebuilt the base that all of the pieces are attached to.  The arrows show the reconstructed areas.  If they had only fixed the holes then the piece would have fallen apart again in short time.  You'll never see all the work that was done, but we know it's there.

Lastly here is the reverse.  Once again, flawless.  I cannot recommend Mair Oriental Rug Services more highly.  On time, and for easily less than half the cost the work should have been.  Top notch!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Bad dog!

Ever wonder why it is so expensive to repair a "tiny little bit" of damage at the corner of your rug?  Here are a few photos of what has to be done to rebuild what looks like a small section.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

It takes the right tools...

Part two of my epic restoration project.  Mair Oriental Rug Services is working on the piece for my customer.

Here is a preview of some of their tools...

 Having the right color is really important...

But so is having the correct fiber...

And it has to be from the right time period...

In this line of work you can never have enough...

Hand dyed wool...

Hand dyed silk from Tabriz...

Up next, some photos of how the work is actually done.  Stay tuned...

Friday, May 20, 2011

My next project...

I have a client I am helping restore this piece, stay tuned for details and photos from the textile restoration expert himself...

Monday, May 16, 2011

Their website is still under construction...

But I like the pieces I am able to see through their agent.  I really con't say more about Gustav Carroll Inc luckily for them sometimes it's all about who you know.

You will note that they are represented by the same agency as former posts Bunting and Radelow.  If you haven't checked out Kyle Bunting or Aaron Radelow do so.  If anyone is over by their store and would like to send me some literature as well as some pictures I would love to see it.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

New from Fabricut...

Yesterday I met with the fine people from Fabricut (who would like you to "Think Fabricut First").  They certainly have a nice set of new pieces.  The Vignettes line has long been a staple of decorators everywhere, and the relatively recent Nuances and Expressions collections are strong additions.  As for more modestly priced goods (often below$40/yd) the Trend Fabrics line has many great pieces. Jacquelyn Smith will be getting another set under her name, and if you have any silly notions about the quality of her designs check them out you will be very pleasantly surprised.

And since pictures make for better posts, here are two pictures of a few pieces you might want to consider for a more contemporary setting.