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Why Recover?

If you like your old furniture why not recover it?

There are several factors to keep in mind when considering recovering your furniture. The main ones to consider are: recover VS new, the frame quality, the advantage of fabric choice, whether to recover or re-upholster or re-model.

- Recover VS New

It is often cheaper to recover an existing piece than to buy a new one of comparable quality. A quality piece of furniture would be more expensive to replace than to recover, therefore if buying new or custom made furniture you should buy the best quality that is affordable because your purchase is amortised across many years and will have good enough “bones” to have it recovered from time to time. Inexpensive furniture can break, pop springs (although it probably wouldn’t have those), and look worn and out of shape within a couple of years due not only to poor quality frames but also because the foam padding and fabric generally won’t stand up to frequent use. 

- Quality Frame Construction

Good frames are made from hardwood or a quality plywood at least 25mm thick, or a combination of both. They should be joined with double dowels and support blocks and screws. A quick way to test the quality of the frame in your furniture is to lift it, if made from hardwood it will be heavy, and if the furniture is 10 or more years old and has very minimal or no movement it is also an indication of a well constructed frame.

Frames made with metal braces, and those where staples are used without dowels are generally not the best. The wood used in such frames is usually of a lesser quality and doesn’t wear well.
If however you have such a piece and are fond of it because it has a style you like and couldn’t find again, or it fits a particular space etc, it can be repaired and strengthened.

- The Advantage of Fabric Choice

The choices of fabrics available are practically endless so you will be able to find exactly the right fabric to suit your décor and your budget. When selecting fabric it is important to take into consideration the amount of wear it will need to withstand. There are natural and synthetic fabrics, and offcourse leather.

As a general rule synthetic fabrics are more durable, colour-fast and soil resistant than natural fabrics but once stained also harder to clean. Natural fabrics absorb stains easier but are also easier to clean than synthetics. Natural fabrics take to dyes differently and can be richer, more subtle. Therefore a combination of synthetic and natural gives you the best of both. Fabrics can be treated with soil-resistant finishes but the finish doesn’t last forever so the fabric should be cleaned from time to time and the treatment re-applied.

- Recover, Re-Upholster or Re-model

If your furniture is in good condition and the springs and padding are still in good shape, a recover is all that would be required. If you find the springs and/or padding is in bad shape it is best to fully re-upholster the furniture, which means, repairing/replacing springs and to re-pad with new quality padding, whether traditionally or with modern materials such as foam.

It is best to use the top quality “High Resilience” foams rather than the standard type if the furniture is to be in a frequent use situation. If you like your furniture but would like to change the look somewhat, it is possible to re-model it to change the style using your existing furniture.

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