Never do this.
If you decide to skip step one, I can’t help you; because after 5 seconds of this project I thought: WHY ON GOD’S GREEN EARTH DID I BUY THIS THING?
LET’S THROW IT IN THE GARBAGE RIGHT NOW.
Unfortunately, I couldn’t tell Paul about the new and improved plan of throwing the sofa directly into the trash, because earlier that afternoon I was dancing around and hooting about getting a John Jelliff loveseat for $50, and Paul said— I think you are going to spend a day on it, realize the scope of the project, get frustrated, lose interest, leave it in the garage, forget about it, then it will be in my way every time I try to work in there, and I will end up finishing it.
And I was all— what! lol! no way! YOU MUST NOT KNOW ME AT ALL!!
Fast forward three hours, I was like— GOOD NEWS FOR YOU, PAUL!
So now Paul is a certified upholsterer.
The lesson here is: know thyself.
Or alternately: marry someone who cannot stand to see an unfinished project.
Part of the problem was the tacks… this sofa frame contained all of the tacks in the entire history of mankind.
ALL OF THEM.
The tacks eradicated my will to live.
By the time I had stabbed all of my fingers with the chisel/pliers/tack-pulling-accouterments, I was like— new plan! LEAVE THE TACKS WHERE THEY ARE AND ABANDON THIS DUMPSTER FIRE.
Tying the springs came next.
If you don’t know about tying springs, believe me, you’re fine.
But if you’d like an explanation, here it is:
Back in the dark ages, people didn’t have foam and cheap furniture.
So people who might otherwise have been rocket scientists, were like– OK! Let’s take this rope and these springs and secure them in a way that the furniture seat has a nice rounded rise/shape to it.
And as you look at these next photos, please process how the springs lining the frame must have DIFFERENT compression from front to back! Because it’s more fun that way!
All you have to do is be sure that the back row and side rows and front rows are more smushed than their interior counterpart, and then you also need to consider the compression on the center springs, (not TOO much! just enough!) and also be sure that it’s all EVEN and generally a gently rounded masterpiece.
I (mistakenly) consider myself a reasonably intelligent person, so I assumed I’d be able to tie knots around metal coils.
My brain was like– sure, okay! Got it! No problem!
Rope, over spring, rope, under spring, knot.
Rope, spring, rope, knot.
Rope, spring, ro…PAUL!!!!
I literally could not understand what was happening after the first two steps.
Even watching the youtube instructions while standing directly in front of the springs and holding the rope, I could not understand past step two.
The boards on the seat are to compress the springs while getting the fabric pulled taut and smooth.
If this is the wrong way to do this part of the process, please keep that comment to yourself because any project this irritating is absolutely correct if someone else is doing it for you and you do not even have to be involved.
The base layer of fabric is upholstery jute— it’s like a very tightly-woven burlap. You want it at least 17 oz. (regular burlap is about 10 oz. per sq. yd).
We kept the original jute on the back pieces because it was in surprisingly good condition.
Wow! Almost done! All I had to do was choose fabric.
I wanted something light-colored; a true antique shade would be rich/jewel-toned, but I wasn’t going for authenticity.
I wanted something bright to highlight the sofa frame’s details and help it stand out from the portal to Narnia, (and my general fondness for buying things-I-don’t-need-and-have-no-spot-for-so-use-this-as-my-storage-inn-of-awesomeness-and-crap.)
I considered white, (because I don’t like to learn from my mistakes) but then I decided that white was too easy… white velvet exists! You can buy it! Where is the fun in that!?
So I doubled down on my commitment to manifesting the exact shade that lived in my head… a light grey-ish blue, with no whiff of green or lavender.
After going to all 57 stores on fabric row, and also to every place in a 30 mile radius, I realized that no storefront carried the imaginary fabric that lived in my head.
Fortunately, the internet was invented for exactly this purpose: assisting you in compulsively spending AS MUCH TIME AS NECESSARY searching for imaginary fabric.
I ordered all kinds of velvet swatches… ALL kinds. Possibly I ordered ALL OF THE SWATCHES IN ALL OF THE WORLD.
Then! Finally! Success!
I ordered the fabric… helped Paul put it on… and then realized that the one and ONLY factor in choosing upholstery fabric should NOT be your inner-color-troll of shade-perfection (she is also the manager of the custom-paint-laboratory); it should be the AVAILABILITY OF MATCHING TRIM.
So now I have to try to match trim after the fact.
And according to my research thus far, I’ve chosen a fabric that has no matching trim in all of the world.
Paul says this is because I do not think things through to their logical conclusion.
Which is A– true. And B– irrelevant, because if the perfect shade of blueish-greyish is not controlled by the laws of time and space and availability of matching trim, HOW IS THAT MY FAULT?
And also, C– on the list of mind-boggling stupid things I have done that could have been prevented by a simple application of critical thinking, this isn’t even worth mentioning.
When I die I will offer my brain to science so they can finally figure out what is wrong with me.
LOOK AT HER FEET!! The tufts on her back paws are even floofier but she refuses to allow me to photograph them. She is doing well and coming out of her shell… still shy but I can see she will be fine with a time and patience! AND my previous foster’s new mom sent me 25 photos of him, the 9 million toys they bought him, and him sleeping curled up in bed with one of their daughters. Which BEYOND made my day… I can see he is loved. FEELING THANKFUL. #AdoptDon’tShop #Foster #Cat #Love #Vegan #Meow #CatsOfInstagram #CatLover #catlover #catstagram
In other news, little man Fetcher got adopted (I got a huge # of photos from his new momma and I can see they looooooove him!!) And I got this girl Fancy Feet! (there’s another photo of her on Instagram a few days ago)