Before you venture out on the search for your next piece of upholstery, do you really know what you will be getting for the price you pay? Here are some things you should know.
A good frame will stand the test of time. The fabric and cushions may wear out with time, but with a quality frame, the life may be extended by simply reupholstering. The best frames are kiln-dried, solid hardwood. Kiln drying removes moisture from the wood therefore protecting it against warping, splitting, expansion or shrinking. A quality piece of upholstered furniture will have double doweled joints. These dowels are fitted into holes to join together pieces of the frame. In the corners of a chair or sofa that is well made, there will be a corner block, usually made of hardwood to reinforce the internal corners of the furniture. Pick up the end of the sofa. It should feel heavy and substantial. No creaks should be heard. You want to know there is a good solid frame, but you should not be able to feel the wood straight through the fabric. All wood should be first covered with a Dacron batting. This will increase the wear-ability of the fabric and make it a lot easier to bump into in the middle of the night.
The best seats are made with eight way hand tied springs. This series coils are tied together with wax coated twine, front to back, side to side and on the diagonal for increased support. This support prolongs the life of the cushions by causing them to wear evenly. These springs are then screwed into steel bands that run across the bottom of the chair or sofa. Reach up underneath. Is it hard and solid, or is it hollow with just a piece of thin black fabric? If it is the later, you are not getting a quality piece of furniture.
Some people love down cushions but many find they are too soft and the constant fluffing is too much maintenance. An alternative, yet still quality cushion is made of high density foam and then covered with Dacron and in some cases, down feathers. All of this is enclosed in a down proof ticking to keep feathers from popping through.
The last visual inspection should show that all seams and welting are smooth. Look to see that patterns are matched up at the seams and are aligned and placed symmetrically.
We have checked all these items out on our premier line of upholstery. See the pictures taken while in Highpoint, NC. We would be glad to help you find the quality piece of upholstery you are looking for at a reasonable price.
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