Perseverance has its rewards, even in decorating.
Over a year ago, I entered a local antique store I don’t go to very often. Oh, they have lovely things but not so lovely prices. Why torture myself. I had been longing for a pair of French os de mouton chairs to use by the great room fireplace. Chairs in decent shape were out of my league, and those within budget needed major repairs — no savings there. But the shopping goddesses were smiling on me that day. On his last buying trip, the owner had purchased four chairs in excellent condition and reasonably priced. Luckily, he was willing to divide the set.
Next came the hunt for fabric. I looked on and off for months… and months… and months. Then I saw Fabric Guru mentioned on a decorating forum. It’s a fairly large website, but easy to use. The fabric photos click to enlarge providing high resolution images. I found a gorgeous honey color linen (55%) with a small repeat. I needed four yards and they had four yards – and it was discounted seventy-five percent! On the off chance it was not as expected, I would only be out thirty bucks. A sappy side note: the company offers online ordering only, but is located in a warehouse less than an hour from me — in the town where I was raised, and only a few blocks from where my father’s family owned a furniture store for seventy years. A happy connection.
Closer to home, I’ve been using Keel Refinishing & Upholstery since they were recommended by a friend. They painted and glazed our breakfast room table base and chairs, fabricated a cushion and waxed the Haywood Wakefield wicker rocker in the sunroom. They also reupholstered several chairs scattered around the house. Owner Roger Keel, along with Jesús (above), are professionals at their finest. They listened patiently as I described the nail head size and color I wanted, and didn’t flinch (okay, maybe just a little) when it came time to discuss spacing. Jesús recommended sewing gimp from the chair fabric instead of a costly ready-made French gimp and it fades away, so it doesn’t distract from the chairs.
The chair backs are one of the first things you see when entering the great room from the foyer. They were originally red leather – too Spanish for me – so it was replaced with a honey color faux suede.
Waiting for what seemed like forever was worth it, especially when the final result is just as I had imagined.
Be sure to read about Jane’s Swedish hutch saga.
If you would like to see more of our home, read Alabama Stone Cottage.