Upholstery

could it be the most boring shopping trip in the world?

Look, I love shopping. I was excited to go, and happy enough to look at fabric swatches for about 20 minutes … but after that, well, to tell you the unvarnished truth, I was over it. I felt like I was 10 again, and looking at tapestry and needle craft at the Royal Melbourne Show with my Great-Aunty Jean.

Time to go! Really!

I sat down, stood up, then wandered around the showroom. Then sat down, and stood up again. Elise didn’t seem to pick up on the body language cues. After about an hour I started complaining. Loudly. JUST like I was 10.

We were at Warwick Fabrics* in Sackville Street, Collingwood looking for material to reupholster Elise’s two arm chairs and modular couch (all Ebay purchases). All that looking … all that indecision. Aargh!

The saving grace for this excursion – Momos just across the road on Smith Street. I had delicious chicken and mango inside out nori rolls for lunch. With toasted coconut sprinkles. When we finally escaped upholstery world that is. Yum!

So, black, blue or green with a bit of a fleck, or some texture. These are the super exciting swatches we brought home. I feel that they’re not a lot to show for half a day of hard work … Any thoughts?

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* Actually it’s a beautiful shop, with loads of great fabrics. Very inspiring. I’m sure if I went there looking for fabric for my own couch it would have been ace! I think all my complaining is because we were shopping and it wasn’t all about me!

more maps on stools …

I bought these stools at least a month ago, maybe two. From the Salvos in Abbotsford.  Someone had done – really and truly – the worst job EVER in recovering them.  They used blockout curtain material?  And just folded the corners.  When I saw these stools in the op shop they were crying out for reupholstering.  They looked so dreadful I just couldn’t pass them by.

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this is what they looked like when I bought them … somehow I don’t think they were upholstered by a professional

So I brought them home and re-covered one of them prety much straight away.  And cut out the fabric for the second one.  But just didn’t get around to finishing it off (suprise, surprise). Instead I left it and the associated paraphernalia all spread out on the table out under the verandah, and then, when the weather was bad a couple of weeks ago I bundled it all up and put it in the studio.  And I haven’t got around to it again.

But as you know, this week I am feeling inspired to spring clean, and this unfinished stool project was on my mind.  Because then I can put away the upholstery tools and the box of tea towels that is inevitably strewn around the place as I search for exactly the right fabric with the right pattern.

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So … yesterday I finally finished the second one.  Hooray!

As you can see they feature a tea towel of Flinders Island.

I am planning to sell these bar stools.  Because I don’t need them.  I just enjoy making them.  Upholstering is so satisfying.

I chose this tea towel because I like the colours, but I hope I haven’t limited my market too much … I just looked up the population of Flinders Island, and it was only 897 in 2005…. yikes.

Hopefully somone in the market for quirky bar stools has been there for a nice holiday.  Or comes from Tasmania and so feels somewhat connected.  Or just like maps of Australia, even if they haven’t visited that exact island ….

inspired by lucinda

I am feeling very crafty this week.  I can’t stop thinking about actually making something.  And I am super keen to find a great decorative foot stool (not too big) to begin my fur foot stool project.

So I spent the day Monday putting up posters inviting artists to submit works to Art4All and snuck in a bit of op shopping along the way.  I didn’t find my stool, but I did find something else I have been thinking of – a rug of  coloured knitted squares.

When I think of knitted squares I think of Lu.  She’s been knitting squares for years.  She is making a blanket for a bed – it must be triple king size by now … or maybe she just knits when she’s relaxing on holidays, which is when I mainly see her … I just don’t know how she has the patience for it.  I admire her tenacity.  But I just don’t have the commitment I am afraid.  And that’s why I bought this rug …

When I got home I headed out to the studio to see which piece of furniture would work well with squares this size (yes, I bought the rug  to upholster with the squares).

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And when I tried them over these stools (I’ve got 2 of them) that I have had for ages sitting around, with no specific project in mind … they were perfect!

Given that I want to do both stools, and the rug has graduated colours (from greens and blues, through yellow to grays) I needed to pull the whole thing apart and reorganise the squares to make 2 interesting stools.  This took a while.  I made 2 collections of 20 squares each (and I’ve still got some good ones left over for another project …)

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Then I couldn’t decide how to attach them together.  I was up til 1am crocheting (in purple).   But in the morning I didn’t really like the result.  So I abandoned stool number one and started on the second stool.

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At 9am I said to Clive, ‘I am just going to sew these together’. It took me til 12.30pm to finish sewing … and I didn’t stop all that time.  But then it only took me 30 minutes to upholster.  So my stool project was completely finished by 1pm.

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Given all the things I needed to do yesterday, I recognise that this was a bit of a waste of time.  EXCEPT – look how super fantastic it looks.  I love, love, love, love it!

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I made myself wait til after dinner to start the next one.  And I got on with real life in the meantime.