Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Sofa Recycling - Recovering a Very Tricky Sofa

Just a quick note on some of the steps to Recovering a Sofa or in this case a clik clak convertable sofa bed. DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME. Cute right? With the tufts and all.

This is what the sofa looked like when we first got it. I suspected that the fabric was not great because the floor model fabric was pilly. After a year it was a wreck, full of pills and stains. DD "let" me have it when I moved out, mostly because it was horrible.

I covered it with an old quilt for a while, but that did not make me happy. I had to recover the whole thing, because actually, I think it's cute and perfect for my tiny space. It turns into a full sized sleeper for guests, and I have no other place for the kids to sleep when they visit.

Here's how I did it.First I measured and guessed about how much fabric to buy, then went to the cheapest place I could find fabric I liked. In this case it was fabric.com. But as usual for the site, the fabric did not exactly match the screen image, much brighter than I expected, but knowing the site, within the range of possibility. $45 for outdoor fabric, incredibly durable and for 5 yards a steal. Sunbrella starts at $20 a yard for similar.

Next I took dish detergent and baking soda and scoured the sofa with an upholstery brush, just to get it kind of sterile, because I intended to cover over the old fabric. I let it dry and the next day I carefully cut off the piped seams. Too bad the cording was old and gross, because that stuff can be expensive. I know how to make corded seams, but I felt it wasn't worth the extra money and work. I also opted not to make the tufts and sections, because I knew it would be enough work as it was.

Then I measured each piece I would make, seat top, arm front and back, back front and back and all the end pieces. The sofa separates into 3 pieces, platform and 2 sides, but because of the movement, there are only 2 main pieces and the platform to be sewn. I cut the pieces, leaving enough extra for the serged seams, and tagged them all. Then I took what was left and covered the platform. No sewing there, all wrap and staple.

The next step was to start sewing and well, pray I measured it all right. I laid all the pieces out like a puzzle and started to sew. I sewed the back together and slipped it over the sofa to make sure it fit. It was snug and hard to get on and off, but that perfect. Then I went to work on the rest, starting with the arm and laying everything together on top of the sofa to make sure I got it right.

With every piece stitched I sat the back and the arm upright and pulled the cover over both. There would be some hand stitching and lots of stapling too. I finished one side of the sofa, then the other, stapling it on the frame and then doing a little hand tacking and touching up of tiny oops.

The two sections are hinged, so they can be folded in half for shipping. Finding the holes for the screws that were covered with new fabric.was a bit tricky, but I found them eventually. It's also hard to work with these, because when you want to keep them flat, they just keep wiggling around and form a seat or arms. Then you have to push them all the way forward and back. Yes it was a PITA.

The platform had to be bolted to the bottom by trying to lay the whole foldy thing flat on it's front, centering the brackets over the holes and bolting. Then to try to flip it upright and place into position. Amazing. A 3 day weekend project. My cost $45 and lots of sweat equity, but I calculated that if I was asked to make this, I would have to charge at least $400 and make barely over minimum wage at that.


Pili said...

Wow, you did a great job, but it was a shitload of work for sure!

ShadowDogDesigns said...

Great job - the sofa looks wonderful! Lots of hard work but worth it.

vintage eye said...

That color is awesome! You are a multi-talented broad!

Pesky Cat Designs said...

Amazing work. Looks fantastic!!

England Furniture said...

Good post. It looks like the project came out great, and the "new" sofa looks comfortable and inviting. Thanks for posting.

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