A Dog Bed and an Armchair

A few weeks ago I was looking for something for my mum in the cupboard above her wardrobe, in amongst two bobbin lace pillows (which was what she wanted) I found eight (yes, EIGHT!) old pillows, bearing in mind she lives in a one bed bungalow and hasn’t had anyone to stay for several years, this did seem somewhat excessive! Luckily she agreed, I left her with two spare and took the others with an idea formulating in my head about a dog bed!

Our dogs sleep by the front door, which no one ever uses, they share a big dog bed, it was getting decidedly wiffy so I decided to make them a new one from the pillows. I worked out that three pillows in a row would cover the area and that furnishing fabric was just the right width.

The fabric is some I’ve had since about 1988 when I bought my first house, a two up two down cottage in Silsden. This was left over when I made my lounge curtains. It’s actually Skopos fabric, they make furnishing fabric for commercial customers, so it’s tough! They used to have a factory shop down near Shipley where they sold seconds and thirds! This is actually a third, it’s got a little white blob every so often! I still love the colours, but it’s very 80’s!!

I’ve never made pillow cases, so I made it up as I went along, I turned under the long edge, folded it over to make a decent sized flap, stitching the ends. I decided 80cm would comfortably fit a pillow in, so I folded right sides together to give me 80cm and stitched the sides together. Once turned the right way I divided it into three and stitched two dividing seams straight down the bed. It was then an easy job to slot the three pillows into their connecting cases.

Zac tried it out straight away, as you can see Rosie couldn’t be bothered to move to test it out!!

My new project to share with you is turning out bigger than I anticipated! When I bought my cottage in Silsden all those years ago, I was given a little cottage style three piece suite. Those were the days when you could buy a cottage for £20K and you were happy furnishing it with everyone’s cast offs whilst you found your feet!! The settee went years ago but the armchairs are really useful, they’re small so they tuck in a corner, but with their high backs and wings they’re really comfortable. They were also getting very grubby. They were recovered professionally about 20 years ago, I made some temporary loose covers a few years ago, but they now desperately need recovering.

About 12 years ago I went to an upholstery class, over the two years I went I progressed to recovering a wing back chair using traditional techniques. I don’t think you can even buy horse hair now! However it does mean it’s not a completely new field for me, even if I am decidedly rusty!! This is my Damson chair which I recovered, I still love it!

I bought some John Lewis furnishing fabric a few months ago in the Shuttle in Shipley, it was £5 a metre in their sale, which was lucky as I knew I needed to get about 15 or 16m, it takes a surprising amount to cover an armchair! It’s a plain fabric in a sort of duck egg blue colour, so I haven’t any pattern matching to worry about.

Yesterday I started stripping down the first chair. I foolishly hoped there would be a calico base underneath it so I wouldn’t have to worry about repadding it. No such luck! There’s just layers of padding laid over the base wood. My main problem at the moment is staples! There are hundreds of them and they are so and so’s to pull out!! I’m trying to take photos as I take it apart and I’m keeping the fabric labelled to use as a rough pattern.

Once I’ve stripped it back I’ll get my friend Trish to come and have a look, she did the course with me and has done a lot since!  She can see if it’s a viable option for me to recover it. I think I need to find some suppliers in upholstery padding too!

I think it’s a case of watch this space!


About craftycreeky

I live in a busy market town in Yorkshire with my husband, kids, dogs and chickens. I love trying new crafts, rediscovering old ones, gardening, walking...anything creative really I started this blog after my New Year resolution worked so well. My resolution (the first one I've ever kept!) was to post a photograph of my garden on Facebook every day. My hope was that I would then see what was good in the garden and not just weeds and work, which was my tendency. The unexpected side-effect was that I have enjoyed many more hours in the garden. I am hoping that 'The Crafty Creek' will have the same effect. Happy creating!
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19 Responses to A Dog Bed and an Armchair

  1. Maria says:

    Love the new dog bed you made; very clever! I admire people such as yourself who tackle upholstery projects 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  2. katechiconi says:

    Inspired dog bed! But as for the rest, what a task! Best of luck, and I really hope you get on well.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. sewchet says:

    You can still buy horsehair! In fact, the only place that it is still produced in the UK happens to be in a town (Castle Cary) I lived in for fifteen years, and is only 7 miles away from my current home. Looks like you’ve set yourself a huge challenge there! Great upcycled pillows – love it.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. claire93 says:

    that’s a very comfortable looking dog bed and I’m sure it’ll get plenty of use.
    Good luck with your re-upholstery! I wish I knew how to do that because I’ve got an old armchair in need of some TLC.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. love your doggy bed and I am looking forward to seeing your progress on the chair.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. CurlsnSkirls says:

    Ooooo! Thanks so much for sharing your chair project, Margaret! The chairs look so comfy & well worth re-covering. Am certain you’ll do a wonderful job!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. kathyreeves says:

    The doggy bed is great, and the armchair will be stunning! I did one a few years ago, and it is so worth it. Mine was new enough that I washed the foam out and replacing the batting with quilt batting, and it turned out splendidly, considering I read a book and took pictures! It was one of my very first blog posts, so happy memories!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Love that dog bed, and wow that purple chair turned out awesome. Good luck with you new project!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. tialys says:

    I went through an ‘upholstery phase’ about 10 years ago – did everything from dining room chairs to armchairs to a chaise longue and even did some caning. I think the chaise longue did for me because it was such a huge project and now my old upholstery tools lie neglected. Have fun!!


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