Furniture Frames for Upholstery and
What to Look for
Furniture frames for upholstery is the most important consideration when reupholstering your piece of furniture. An experienced upholsterer will be able to tell you if the frame is made of softwood or hardwood. Are the joints glued with screws and or wooden dowels. Does it have corner blocks. Are the blocks glued and screw in.
Newer furniture, say in the last 20 years, use softwood and even plywood for the furniture frames. The joints are air stapled and some are not even glued. This is all done on assembly lines mainly to keep cost down so they can sell the furniture cheaper. These pieces are not worth putting the money into to be reupholstered. Normally the heavier the piece of furniture, the better the frame is because hardwood is heavier than softwood or plywood. Go to flea markets or used furniture stores you can buy some really old upholstered pieces for next to nothing. These normally have strong hardwood frames for upholstery and will last for another 30 years or more after an experienced upholsterer has reglued the joints and corner blocks. Below is an perfect example of a old chair with a good frame and having it reupholstered
There still are companies that take pride in building frames the old fashion way from hardwood to ensure strength and a long lasting piece but the price for these are much higher.
So when thinking of buying a new piece of upholstered furniture consider going to your local flea market or yard sale and find that gem. Have it reupholstered by a professional upholsterer and it will last you for many, many years.
If you are buying an from a dealer , you are buying the frame. You want an authentic, quality antique frame in good condition. Have the seller show you the frame if possible. Many dealers leave the underside of a sofa or wing chair open so that you can see the construction. Sometimes dealers leave the back fabric attached with Velcro so that you can see the back frame.
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