A Lesson Learnt

I think I’m too obsessed with finishing my chair to actually enjoy working on it! Chair class was a bit of a stress because my attitude was one of rush, rush, rush rather than learn and enjoy.

That said I have made significant progress (although, as always, it really doesn’t look like it 😉 )

I fixed the second arm’s button on


Then spent a lot of time pinning (and unpinning, plumping, stuffing, smoothing and pinning again) the fabric around the arm frame so that the arm was plump and firm and a good shape.



Sue, my tutor, demonstrated how to shape the end of the arm for me and it was all pinned in place.



Now I have to stitch the fabric in place and try to shape and pin the other arm just as well as Sue did AND I’m determined to take my time and enjoy the process 🙂

Until next time,

Chris x

New Term at the Chair School

Let me refer you good people to this post here all about my last chair lesson and the daunting homework I was hesitating over. Do you think I did it? I admit to pondering over it quite a bit over Easter.

On Monday, the day before the new term I plucked up courage and put my scissors to the cloth – very gingerly it’s true! The cuts were made a millimetre at a time and the top part of the arm was sort of done.

This was my tutor’s side
and this is the side I did.

I did find a note in my book that said, ‘Do pleats, if it doesn’t work do the string trick.’ Well I have no idea what that was supposed to mean and I wrote it!! Needless to say I decided not to do the pleats 😉

Yesterday was the start of a brand new term, there are only SIX sessions in this term so I’m under pressure to finish.

My fantastic tutor gave me a list of things to do and I happily worked my way through all of them. A lot of it was fiddling and tweaking with the pleats and padding the lower back of the chair so it ‘meets’ the seat nicely (who knew such things mattered!?); so not much to see but the chair does look a lot better for the attention.


I did start working on the lower arms, what do you think?


One session down, Five more to go…

Until next time,

Chris x

Back to Business

As you may know I have been busy making a couple of banners for my church. They are for the Lent and Easter season and yesterday I put the first one up.

This one represents the temple curtain (or sin)  separating man and God (if you would like a fuller explanation then this is a good link) and is for display during Lent. Now I know Lent is almost over but next year the plan is that it’ll go up on Ash Wednesday, still better later than never so here it is…SAM_2391As you can see it’s hanging very high, which could be a big problem but some men from the church have cleverly set up a pulley system which you can easily lower to hook the banner onto and then pull it up to where you want it – thanks guys!

Here’s a closer view…


The next one – which is really this one with a ‘torn curtain’ in front of it – goes up on Thursday evening ready for Good Friday.

So that was my morning activity – very enjoyable especially as there was a coffee morning happening in church at the time so I had company and refreshments on hand 🙂 . I did have to dash off to get to my Upholstery class in time though. Progress is tangible now. I didn’t do my homework last week for the simple reason that I didn’t really understand how to do it! After asking for clarification I was so glad I hadn’t even attempted it as I know I’d have made a mess of it!

I had to pin and stitch the fabric to the back of the chair – sounds straightforward doesn’t it? And it was when you had someone with you to guide you.


The little pleats will be on show when the outer fabric is put on so I tried to get them even.


This took a couple of hours to do – yes really!

Then the tutor took over and showed me how to shape part of the arm…


and now I’m supposed to do the same on the other side – help! It involves cutting the fabric so you have to be pretty sure of what you’re doing – which I’m not! I think I’ll have to go very slowly with the cutting ‘cos we all know you can’t undo a cut!

My next upholstery class wont be until after Easter now so I’ve a couple of weeks to pluck up some courage and have a go – or wimp out and do it when my tutor is around to rescue me! What would you do?

Until next time,

Chris x

Tweaking pleats

Today felt as if Spring had arrived, the sunshine was a sight for sore eyes after all the rain we’ve had. That strange feeling came upon me, you know the one, it compels you to clean everything in sight even though every thing’s (well most things) clean anyway 😉 .

I decided to get my living room curtains down to wash, which led to me giving the windows and their surrounds a good scrub inside and out, which led to me cutting back the shrub which grows in front of the window (it’s grown so bushy I struggled to reach the window!) and that was the morning gone!

Still time well spent because the curtains are freshly laundered and back up in place and look and smell nice and fresh. Simple pleasures 🙂 .

This afternoon was my upholstery class and today was all about tweaking and fiddling! My aim was to sort out all the little pleats which form around the buttons on the chair back.


I used a long needle like tool to move the pleats to where they should go (anyone know where that is?) – my tutor, a very experienced upholsterer, seemed to think this was straightforward to do, but the pesky pleats didn’t co operate with me as easily as they did with her 😉 . Anyway I eventually got it done. What do you think?


It’s looking pretty good isn’t it?

My homework is to stitch all the fabric down on the back of the back of the chair!

SAM_2339As you can see it’s all pinned in place a the moment.

What have you been up to today?

Until next time,

Chris x

All Buttoned Up

This week’s Chair Day was much better than last weeks! I actually saw some progress which is always good 🙂

I did my homework of marking out the fabric for the back of the chair – marking where the buttons go to make it easier for today. Apparently when doing buttons preparation is the key.

First of all I covered the horse hair with fleece, making holes where the buttons were going to go…


Then I covered it all up with polyester wadding…


and poked holes in that too…


Fabric and button time!




So far so good 🙂



I now have to spend some time making sure the pleats in the fabric look right, they should make  nice diamond shapes between the buttons, apparently at the moment mine are ‘bottom heavy’! So I shall be trying to lighten up their bottoms this week 😉

Until next time,

Chris x