Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Bus Stop Chair on the A4067 near Crai, Powys

This chair now available to bus travellers on the A4067 near Crai.

Thanks to Dan Mudford for the chair that he found abandoned on the street in London and which I painted and reupholstered with salvaged pieces of some terrific 1920s moquette from a sofa I reupholstered a few years back. 

I painted the chair with that chalk paint that everyone seems to rave about - that's a palaver innit? Coat after coat and still all the cracks remain. It reminded me of my favourite ever letter in Viz which read "Manufacturers of Dulux 'Once', I think the word you're looking for is 'twice' ".

I added a 'falling soldier' to the leg because no chair is really complete without one.

There's a cavity below the seat of this chair in which I think I wrote a secret message. As ever I'd had a few drinks while making the chair and now have no idea what it was. If you're passing, could you have a look and let me know? 

Many thanks.

Monday, 6 June 2016

Upholstery Course for Make It in Wales

I've started teaching some one-day upholstery courses for Make It in Wales upholstering milking stools in Welsh wool. The workshop is designed to cover many aspects of the traditional upholstery process and will leave you with a lovely item that I'm sure you'll be very proud of.

We ran the first course last year which was very successful as you can see above. The next courses are in Cardigan in June and September. Here's what we're doing.

 The stools are handmade in reclaimed ash by a local craftsman in my village. Each is unique.

We start by selecting fabric from my store of Welsh wool pieces that are small offcuts from my own upholstery projects. Some are vintage and some are new from Melin Tregwynt. I also have a few pieces from other British manufacturers including Bute and Sanderson, but critically they are all wool fabrics suitable for slip-stitching by hand.

We then make some piping and attach it to the stool top along with a hessian base.

Bridle-ties are stitched into the hessian and these are stuffed with genuine animal hair (horse/hog mix). This is then regulated to make a soft uniform seat.

Then we have the tricky business of centering the top fabric and pinning in place.

And then hand stitching the top fabric to the piped edge using an invisible slip-stitch with a curved needle.

The workshop is designed for complete beginners but will certainly teach new skills to crafts people at all levels. It's a busy day but I have it on good authority that it's 'very satisfying' and just think, you'll take home a splendid little stool that's hand-made (mainly by you) from 100% natural materials and made in the traditional way.

Sign up here

Go on.