Monday, August 29, 2011

Twig chair

We named this chair the Twig chair. Every chair here gets a shop nickname. Well, not EVERY chair, but most of them.

The chair had seen better days. The fabric was stained and the frame broken like a twig.

Every house needs an accent chair that makes a statement and adds extra seating in a pinch. You can upholster it in a neutral fabric so it can work in any room. Or give it some pizzazz with a bold pattern or animal print.
This twig chair is the perfect accent piece. The size is just right. Not too big, and not too small.


Frame repair in progress


It's not broken anymore. It's the perfect accent chair once again.

Elli thought it was a pretty cool chair. She gave it the "is it comfy?" test. It passed.

Then guess what happened?

Would you believe another customer brought in the SAME chair? He wants to paint it black and recover it. It's a small world we live in folks.

Fabric: Robert Allen Pattern: Elated Color: Pumice

Friday, August 26, 2011

Manly chair for the cabin in the woods

Every cabin in the woods needs a comfy chair. So when this client came in saying they were going to put this wingback in their cabin we thought, hmmmm. It seemed a bit girly for hunting and fishing.

It definitely needed a change before it made its way to the cabin.


It needed a masculine, ghost-story telling, cigar smoking, enjoying a scotch kind of fabric. Know what I mean?

And that's exactly what the client selected.

Double welt adds a nice finishing touch.

The welt is done. It already looks better for the cabin.
Tada. It's all ready. Anyone have a scotch?
Can't you just picture it in a cabin like this one here?

Ralph Lauren Double RL Ranch Guest Cabin*
It almost makes me want to go fishing on the river.


*Photo credit: Ralph Lauren cabin photo from Ewing Architects, Inc. You can find it here.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Favorite arm chairs made over

This first time client came in about six months ago. She's a busy working gal and felt a tad overwhelmed by all the fabric choices in our store. It was too much for her to deal with so she went home to think about it.

Fast forward a a few months and another client came in saying she was there to help her daughter-in-law select fabrics for two arm chairs. We got to talking (of course) and I found out the daughter-in-law was the same customer I had helped a few months prior.

What a nice mother-in-law! And what a great relationship they must have.

We narrowed down the fabrics to a few selections we thought she would like. Our goal was to make it as easy as possible for her to decide so we could turn these chairs into something beautiful again.
Ok, keeping it real here. The chairs looked a lot better before the guys started stripping them. I just didn't get my first picture soon enough. So imagine them fully covered.

Ok. Now move on.

The client came in a few days later with her fabric selection. I was super excited with the fabric she selected. It was crisp and contemporary, and would completely change the look of the chairs.

We discussed switching to a tailored upholstered look, versus the loose slip cover she had before. I also recommended she lose the skirt and show the chair legs. She agreed.

Adding the welt.
Waiting for the back and seat cushion.

The chairs came out amazing. They don't look like the same chairs, which is one of my favorite things we do at Pollin's. It's like magic.


In the truck. Ready to be delivered.
We delivered them last Friday and I hear (from the guys) she was grinning ear to ear. I think she's ready to do another chair. Yay!

Now I'm grinning like a proud mama.

Chair details: Fabricut fabric, pattern coldfield, color leaf

Monday, August 22, 2011

Custom chair in six weeks

Sometimes customers can't find what they're looking for in a retail store so we make them a custom piece to their exact specifications.

This was the case with one of our favorite customers. She told us one day that she had been searching for an extra chair for her living room and nothing was quite right.

She described what she was looking for and we immediately knew we could make it for her.

We showed her some samples, she selected a fabric, and {poof} six weeks later she has a completely unique, custom-made chair that was made just for her.

First coat of stain and springs are installed.

Second coat of stain applied. Now it's ready for the fabric.

Ready to go home!
I love watching the guys in the workroom put it all together. They're so talented it's really fun to watch. I'm not sure they think it's so much fun being watched. But they put up with me.

Feel free to stop by and I'll give you a tour of the workroom. I love showing off all the jobs in progress. I'm sure this is another of my quirks that they just love! Actually, they're quite proud of the work they do. They don't mind at all.

Chair details: Maple wood, cinnamon satin finish, Bergamo fabric

Monday, August 15, 2011

Guest house makeover - part I

One of the great things about having a business in Napa is the diverse clientele we get to work with.

We do projects for wineries, restaurants, inns, hotels, artists, design shops, tasting rooms, interior designers and of course tons and tons of homeowners. The homes are just as diverse as the commercial clients which makes every day fun and interesting.

We've done a lot of projects for local Inns and Bed and Breakfast's recently. This is a good thing. It means tourists are visiting. We love that. It makes everyone in Napa Valley happy.

Today's chair is from a guest house at a winery.

It was ready for a makeover. The fabric was loose, saggy, dirty, and faded. I could go on and on. No one wanted to see this in a guest room, right? 

It's not looking so good. The greasy head spot is pretty yucky.
Stripping the old red check fabric. Bye-bye.

No more red check for this baby. Hello green floral.

I love this print. It's sophisticated and bright. It's not old-fashioned or trendy. It will look great in the guest house for years to come.

Adding the new Stroheim green apple floral fabric. Hello sophistication.

Much better. Right?

This bad boy is next.

Stay tuned....

Friday, August 12, 2011

Vinyl chairs from the 1970's

Many pieces we see here at Pollin's are in pretty bad shape. Some are inherited in bad condition, others are found "treasures." Others have just been stored away in a garage or basement for a very long time.

Both of these sets of classic 1970's chairs had definitely seen better days.

First up. Groovy swivel chairs.

Before - not looking so good.
We had chairs like this when I was a kid. My mom would recover them every time we moved in a new shade of vinyl to match our kitchen. I remember at least three colors - lime green, rust, and light blue. We loved the fact they swiveled.

The client chose a lively shade of blue to update the chairs. We added new fill, made bright new vinyl covers and now they're good as new again.


Pretty as a peacock. I know they will make her smile every morning.

Next up?


We've stripped off the seats. The chrome will be polished by the owner. It's going to take some elbow grease to remove as much rust as possible and bring back the shine. She seems up for the challenge.

We'll rebuild the seats with new springs and create all new backs, and then recover them in new vinyl to make them comfy once again.

They were in pretty bad shape.
Stay tuned for the "after" pictures. The vinyl is in. But the frames are still being stripped.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Custom mohair sofa

It's like a giant teddy bear.

A very expensive, luxurious, teddy bear.

The kind of teddy bear that is so soft you can't stop petting it.

And it's a couch. Something you lay down on and watch a movie, or snuggle up on and listen to music. You will feel yourself getting lost in its softness and the cushiness of the down seats.


It wish it was mine. But it's not.

It's the latest item for sale at West End Napa.

The couch is completely custom, from the building of the kiln dried wood frame, to the stuffing of down-filled seats. The fabric is 100% mohair from Holland.

It is luxury at its finest and will definitely make a statement in your home.

And it can be yours. Just visit our friends at West End Napa on First Street in Napa.

100% Mohair
The cushions are made of high resilience foam with a down envelope
You really need to see it and touch it to know how fantastic this couch is.

Teddy Sofa Dimensions: W 72" x D 36" x H 32"
Price upon request.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Proper fit for throw pillows

Want to know the secret?

The insert needs to be two inches bigger than the cover.

It's so simple. I don't know why I never thought of it before. But I just didn't.

We've bought dozens of pillows over the years and I could never figure out why the form inside didn't fit properly. The cover was always too loose. Well, much to my surprise, if you're buying a 20" pillow you need a 22" pillow form inside to properly fill it out.

The sales people in stores should be telling you this. They never told me. I had loosey goosey pillows for years.

I didn't learn this very important fact until we bought Pollin's.

Honestly, I can't believe I didn't figure it out sooner. But I didn't.

So, if you are going to buy a throw pillow cover from a store make sure the insert you buy is two inches bigger. That will give the pillow a nice plump feel.

Don't worry if the store doesn't have the size you need. Look up your local upholsterer. They can take care of it for you. In fact, you'll probably get a better insert if you do that. You can ask for a poly insert or down. They can even make one for you if the size is unique.

Here is how the pillow should look. Nice and full. No loose fabric in the corners.

Silk stripe, with braid trim and down feather fill.
Leather front and back with leather welt.
Cheetah print with fringe and sequined accent tape. Ooh la la!
This striped silk was originally a valance. We re-purposed it into a cool lumbar pillow with a mittered pattern.
The little lumbar pillow sits in front of a long bolster, custom-made for the king bed.
Any pillow questions out there?
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