Construction And Upholstery Of Chairs

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muslin, and finally the cover is drawn, Such a seat has all the appearance of one upholstered with springs, and is comfortable enough where something firm is wanted.

No. 3 illustrates the spring seat. It differs from No. 2 in this respect: the webbing is fastened to the underside of the seat frame, instead of the top, and on it are placed the springs. Over them is stitched a burlap on which the hair or stuffing is placed. The remainder of the work is the same as for padded seat No. 2. The edge is stitched, hair is added, the muslin is drawn over, and finally the cover.

If it is desirable to make the seat so that none of the woodwork shall show, no difference occurs until the cover is put on, when instead of fastening it, as illustrated, just above the lower edge of the frame, it is brought down over the frame and tacked to the under side. In such work cotton wadding is placed between the frame and the cover that the wood may not be felt, if the hand is in contact with the lower part of the seat.

Chair seats that are upholstered have a block of wood notched around the corner post on the inner side, and fastened to the top of the seat frame, where it joins the back. This is the "upholstery block," and is needed by the upholsterer to tack the cover on where it fits around the back post. The upper surface of this block is about one-half inch below the level of the finished seat.

Chair backs may be upholstered in a manner similar to seats, and the methods are the same. The term "over-stuffed pieces" is applied to furniture that is upholstered so that none of the framework, except the legs, is visible. No. 4, Plate XI. illustrates an arm chair of this description, showing the framework and the method of covering it. The frame is of hardwood, and is constructed the same as any other chair. The seat frame is set low in order that there may be plenty of room for large springs, making the seat soft and easy.

Beneath the upper rail of the arm, and also of the back is a second rail left loose that it may be fastened where desired by the upholsterer. These rails are used by him for fastening the lower edges of the arm and back covers, which are put on after the seat is upholstered.

The seat frame of overstuffed pieces should be so constructed that the webbing may be tacked to it at a point not more than eleven inches below the level of the top of the springs, if springs of usual dimensions are used. It may be less, if desired, for then smaller springs can be used, or large springs may be tied down. The top of the seat is about .two and a half inches above the top of the springs. Some-nines the seat frame is very deep, and were the webbing tacked to its lower edge the springs would be much below the level required. In such instances either a strip of wood is fastened all round the inside of the frame to which the webbing may be tacked or else an extra loose frame is covered by webbing and set inside the seat frame at the proper level.

The upper edge of the seat frame is usually about halfway between the level of the webbing and top of the springs. The method of upholstering the seat and back when springs are used, is the same as described above for No. 3. In the work on the back, however, there will be noticed on the illustration a portion marked "roll." This is made of hair stitched in burlap to make a firm edge, all round the back frame, possessing elasticity enough not to feel hard when leaned against. Over this the covers are drawn.

In good work the upholsterer carefully covers all edges of the wood with hair stitched in burlap and all flat surfaces with cotton batting, so that at 110 point is the wood beneath easily detected by the touch.

Overstuffed pieces do not admit of a great variety of good forms. There are no end of patterns, or designs, in which an attempt has been made to produce something new and good ; but most of them are unsatisfactory.

The beauty of this class of work is dependent on the absence of fussy, unnecessary trimmings, and on the outline. This outline ought to be one that seems the natural result of using upholsterers' materials, and the simplest best fills this requirement. Upholstery may be either plain or tufted, and the choice is at times a uiaiter of taste, but frequently tufting is a constructive necessity. When the seat level is high above the frame tufting of the front edge prevents, to a degree, the sagging of the covering when the chair is occupied and the springs compressed. A border formed by a line of stitching along the front about half the height of the seat sometimes serves the same purpose. These methods also prevent the cover from appearing too large after the piece has been used awhile and the stuffing is matted down. It is also advisable to tuft the seat and back of very large pieces for the same reason; or, as a decorative feature if the covering material is plain, unfigured goods. The tufting should always be proportioned to the size of the article. Where the surface to be upholsiered is concave tufting is necessary, otherwise the ma-

terial can not readily be made to follow the curve. The ordinary form of tufting is to sew the goods in at the four corners of a diamond, but occasionally for concave surfaces it becomes more like a series of rolls side by side and the full length of the hollow.

The material used as a cover for over stuffed pieces largely affects their appearance; goods that would be well suited to one chair may not look right on another. The color is governed by the decorations of the room in which the furniture is placed. It need not, perhaps should not, be the same color as the walls since contrast is desirable, but it must be in harmony with the surroundings. The pattern of the goods may be of a historic style similar to the design of the room, though it does not seem necessary to confine oneself too closely, for in many instances the figure of the goods is entirely lost in the tufting, and a color effect is all that impresses itself on the mind. This is largely true also of pieces without tufting.

It is well to avoid patterns too pronounced in form or out of scale with the article covered. Then, too, it is not desirable to use designs composed of objects that a person would not care to sit on, as shells, sharp tesellated forms, musical instruments, buildings, landscapes. etc. The suitable materials are those woven with an "all over" ornament of a size adapted to the intended use, and treated in a flat way without imitating modelling in relief.

Over stuffed articles have no woodwork, except the legs, showing and they sometimes seem too light for the mass above, though really they may be more than strong enough. If fringe is hung from the lower edge of the upholstery to the floor the feet are hidden and the general mass is apparently resting on the floor, the fringe serving to carry the color and lines to that level. The length of the fringe may be about one-half the height of the seat. The best taste admits of only simple fringes free from small drapings, "skirts," or elaborate nettings that soon become dirty and shabby. When the supports of the furniture are sufficiently heavy to suggest no thought of weakness, and there is a frame of show wood below the upholstery no fringe is required.

The rush seat chair is not in common use, as it was a number of years ago, yet occasionally it is wanted. The frame for such a seat is shallow, not more than an inch and a quarter, and has all its edges rounded. Sometimes the frame is nothing more than turned sticks over which the rushes are twisted and woven into a seat entirely covering them.

Tlie cane seat requires a flat frame usually above the seat frame, though it may replace it. On the inner edge of this frame holes are bored through which the cane is drawn and stretched across the opening until a seat is formed.

The sofa is practically an extremely wide chair, and the data given for chairs may be applied to it.

The following is a table of dimensions of various chairs taken from satisfactory examples:

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