Reupholstering Antique & Vintage Furniture

Customers are always asking us whether or not they should reupholster their antique furniture. We always advocate salvaging antiques and vintage furniture, but you must beware: not all antique pieces are created equal.

When it comes to reupholstering Grandma's old sofa or your most recent garage sale find, there are a few questions you should ask yourself:

  • Is your antique furniture old enough? The way furniture is built has drastically changed in the last three decades. A good piece of furniture is fabricated with kiln-dried hardwood. This is the type of structure you are looking for, a solid frame with good bones (corner blocks and coil seating, double doweling, screws & glue).
  • Are you happy with the overall structural design? We can often re-style an older piece and keep in mind, you have to look past the awful fabric and stains to see the potential. Refinishing and adding some fabric will rejuvenate the piece and give you a new piece to add to your home.

See below for an antique a customer came across at the Salvation Army store. We know it is a good piece because it takes two men to carry, unlike so many “disposable” pieces that are flimsy and light. With a little TLC, new foam and spring work, this rocking chair will stand out in a crowd.

DSC - Antique Rocking Chair

DSC - Antique Reupholstery

A customer brought the chair below by our shop for reupholstery. She purchased this "antique" for a good deal of money from an estate sale in Atlanta, assured by the seller of its authenticity. Though it looks the part, this is a fraudulent piece is plastic! We involved a wood finisher who discovered this. Needless to say the client was greatly disappointed. BEWARE of fake antiques! They are abundant!

DSC - Antique Fraud