Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Mid-Winter Projects Series Part I: The Couch

I'm back! I was wondering what January would be like for the no-longer-so-fledgling-but-still-not-fully-in-flight Mountain Ash Design. Would I get a lot of production work done? Would I be half on vacation after the busy holiday vending season, cooking elaborate meals for my family every night? Would I have my Etsy shop fully stocked with new and sale products? Well...it hasn't turned out quite like that, though that third one is not too far off. And I have been keeping up with feeding the family and doing the subsequent dishes. Quite charming tasks when I'm not on such a tight schedule and I have a cute apron on to help me feel organized and purposeful. The toasty warmth from the wood cook stove in the kitchen doesn't hurt either.

I've done a little bit of production work with Betsy, the most excellent veggie and chicken grower in town, but mostly I've been working on show applications and taxes and sewing custom orders and some non-business related sewing projects, too. So here begins a little series of posts in which I'll show you around some results from the MAD labs, shall we say off season.

First I'll give you a little tour of by far my biggest project (of the season): Covering new foam cushions I bought for our vintage Modern couch. ("vintage Modern" - interesting term, huh? I see it on on Etsy all the time - appears to be all the rage. The other term I see that makes more sense is "Mid-Century Modern")

This is the before photo. We got this couch at Recycle North in South Burlington a few years ago. It's actually a pretty cool item. But alas, this has been it's typical state for a while.

See, the caning is good. The structural integrity is quite good. It came with old disintegrating foam cushions covered in this same heavy green weave. I bought new foam cushions over a year ago and finally got around to covering them last month.

In the sewing room: I only had enough of this maroon retro 1940s-style bark cloth to use on the front/top of all the cushions. I used heavy denim for the rest. The one on top I made for practise. Couldn't spring for piping so I made up this edge treatment instead. (I don't even know if I'm using the correct slipcover terminology.)

Voila - Here it is all done! I just finished it on Sunday. The bark cloth has been kicking around for years also and was often used as the under-the-dog layer so it is a bit faded and snagged in places. I realize that I am mixing up period styles here. I believe the couch is from the 1950s or early 1960s. The walls downstairs in our house had wallpaper similar to this fabric when we first bought the house 13 years ago, except water-stained and grimy. I was sorry to paint over it.

I'll post again soon about a custom baby quilt I am finishing and a sweet little market apron with very specific proportions I recently made for a local grower.

Ta Ta!

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