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The Spruce Upholstery Book, and Plans for August’s Bed

I know how to upholster a simple chair seat. Years of Trading Spaces viewings taught me to start with a staple in the center, pull the fabric taut to the opposite side, staple, and work out from there. Beyond that though? I don’t know. Stick some batting in there under the fabric if you’re feeling fancy, and call it a day? And forget about webbing and springs. That wasn’t covered by Hildi. Of course, my lack of knowledge in this area didn’t stop me from purchasing an inexpensive wooden framed bed for August’s room, with the intent to upholster it.

I waffled between several blue fabric choices, but I fell for a design with tree slices during a recent trip to IKEA. The color palette is neutral, and I’m thinking of it as a manly take on polka dots. You know, for my manly two-year-old.

Boy's Bed Upholstery Fabric

I felt like I could approach the project with my limited sewing skill set and do a decent job, but I wanted to do an amazing! job. I searched for tutorials online, but there are a lot of people out there putting out a lot of tutorials with questionable methods. Then I heard word that Spruce’s Amanda Brown was coming out with a book (Spruce: A Step-by-Step Guide to Upholstery and Design), so when I was asked to take part in her online book tour, I agreed.

The book is divided among five key projects, and from those, you can adapt the techniques to whichever piece you want to work on. It’s thorough and covers what I would consider to be complex reupholstering jobs, but everything feels doable rather than overwhelming. I’m paying close attention to the section on the frame of a three-seater sofa, as it’s pretty close to what I’ll be doing to the bed.

Upholstering a Sofa

Win a Copy of the Book!

Do you have any upholstering to do? The Spruce book tour and classes are about to start, and they’re also holding a giveaway with their “Ugliest Chair” contest on Facebook right now.

I received a copy of the book for review, but I’m also giving a copy away. Just leave a comment below to enter*, and I’ll choose a winner at random. Good luck! And be sure to visit the other blogs participating in the online book tour.
Spruce: A Step-by-Step Guide to Upholstery and Design

Open to US residents only, 18 and over. Ends Friday at midnight, CT.

*The giveaway has ended. Congratulations to the winner, Annie!

Fabrics for the Kids’ Rooms

I was considering patterned fabrics like this or this for Eleanor’s curtains, but I wasn’t in love with anything. Thus, solid curtains! Groundbreaking! Either these or these will work, and to make them a little more fun, I’ll sew pom pom trim along the edges. I also ordered a blue eyeball sconce (great name) to go above the bed.

Eleanor's Room: Wall Sconce and Curtains

Aw, look at it! Like a big glossy pom pom or something. I should finally order this print.

Then for the walls I thought, maybe wallpaper? (This one’s pretty, this one is cute.) Do I want to chance a repeat of what happened in August’s room though? I think E would probably leave the walls alone, especially since she has been asking for wallpaper, but still. Paint may be the way to go right now. Maybe I’ll stencil something if we’re feeling crazy, but I think the room will come together with plenty of pattern elsewhere.

Like on her chair, perhaps. Because I love adding sewing projects to my to-do list. I made a purse before, with piping and everything! Five years ago! I’ve got this.

Fabrics for This Chair?

Fabrics for This Chair?

Right after I upholster August’s bed, of course.

Fabrics for Upholstering this IKEA Bed

I’ve ordered a sconce for his room too, but the name is not as fun. And hey, we found an extra length of his wallpaper in a drawer here! We might try to replace the missing strip. I’m fond of those stripes in his room and would like to work with them.

I ordered all of those fabric swatches above from Tonic Living. That car fabric needs to work its way into August’s room in some way, whether it’s on the bed, on a pillow, or as curtains. I like the windowpane fabric a lot too, but I don’t know if it plays well with his plaid bedding. Maybe for Eleanor’s chair? Are polka dots not masculine enough for a little boy? I can play it safe with a solid, but yawn. Let me overthink this some more.

Wallpaper in August’s Room (A Cautionary Tale)

August’s room was already wallpapered with pale blue and white stripes when we bought the house. August is an awesome little boy, but he’s not the kind of kid we’d trust to be gentle with the walls. I’d planned to work with the wallpaper until it got trashed (in a few years?), then redecorate. I had already picked up some bedding for him six months ago, before we had even thought about moving, but look how great it looks with the stripes!

August's Bedding

I bought a plain wooden bed from IKEA over the weekend, and I’m planning to upholster it myself. I’ve already ordered a few fabric samples, and I was excited about how cute his room is going to look. It’s not much yet and the furniture placement may change, but can you imagine it with that bedding and the bed done up in a great navy blue? So much potential!

August's Bedroom

We already had a brown rug and a brown corduroy glider, so I brought those into the room too. I know some may say that brown and blue is so ten+ years ago, but you know, in a kid’s room? Working with what we’ve already got? It’s not bad. Plus we were continuing the transition from crib to bed that we’d started with August up at the lake house, and I thought it might be comforting for him to have the familiar glider in his room.

August's Room

Except my boy decided to speed along the wallpaper removal. Yesterday, I noticed a little hole about the size of a quarter, right in the middle of the wall. I didn’t think it was there before, but then I thought that maybe I had scraped it with the bed while I was assembling it? It was possible. I hoped August wouldn’t notice and that it wouldn’t get much worse.

It got much worse.

Peeling Wallpaper

He called me in last night, about twenty minutes after I left his room and said good night. His blanket was messed up. I guess he didn’t think I’d take notice of the giant portion of peeled wallpaper?

I had to stifle my laughter. “August, no! You’re not supposed to do that.” “No, it’s OK,” he told me. “See?” He pointed to the space between the bed and the wall. He had been peeling the wallpaper and dropping it down there. Like, ‘hey mom, it’s OK. I’m being neat about it.’

Looks like we don’t have to work around the wallpaper anymore.

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