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Fabric for Days…….

We think the best part of going ahead with the recovery of your beloved piece is fabric selection!!  

This is the part where you get to dream and visual your furniture in a whole new way.  Will you go bold or classic?  Will you follow current trend or forge your own unique path?  Whichever direction you choose, Trevor Brown Upholstery has you covered.  Our showroom is host to thirteen (13) fabric houses to ensure that we have something for every taste.

Avant Garde    http://www.masterfabrics.com

Barrow    barrowindustries.com

Charlotte    http://charlottefabrics.com

Elite    http://elitetextileinc.com

Fabricut    http://fabricut.com

Jacksons    http://jackson.ca

J Ennis     http://jennisfabrics.com

JF Fabrics     http://jffabrics.com

KB Fabrics     http://kbfabrics.com

Kravet     http://kravet.com

Maxwell     http://maxwellfabrics.com

Trend     http://trend-fabrics.com

Tritex     http://tritexfabrics.com

Come down and visit us and get inspired!  Our showroom hours are Monday-Friday, 7-4:30.


Pantone Color of the Year – Ultra Violet

It’s here: Pantone’s 2018 Color Of The Year is Ultra Violet!

Complex and contemplative, Ultra Violet creates mystery. Purple has the ability to create a sense of peace and tranquility in your designs, energize the masses, or create a rich and luxurious environment.

How will you use Ultra Violet in your designs?


Happy Clients = Happy Trevor Brown

We love hearing that you love your newly recovered pieces but we especially love seeing those pieces in your home.

Here’s a recent letter from a pleased client….

“To everyone at Trevor Brown:
Thank you for doing such a wonderful job on my (well, actually the dog’s) chair
It was met with great approval!”


Happy Canada Day!

Oh, Canada!

This year marks Canada’s 150th anniversary of Confederation – when the British North America Act was given royal assent by Queen Victoria on March 29, 1867.

This year, festivities will be taking place all over the country, so put on your best Canada Day duds and join in on the fun!

Anatomy of a Sofa

It looks straightforward. An upholstered piece of furniture is little more than fabric stapled or tacked to a padded frame, right?

In fact, there’s far more to achieving the crisp perfection and deep comfort of upholstery. That’s why purchasing a new sofa (or chair) can be so expensive, and why re-covering a well-worn heirloom is sometimes costly. That said, quality construction may be more economical than replacing a piece every 10 years or so.

Before you make the investment, it helps to understand what goes into making a well-crafted sofa. After all, the bones of an item determine its value and longevity. With sturdy materials and hand-finished details, a custom piece can last 20 years or longer with reupholstering.

Once you understand the differences between feathers, down and foam; jute and elastic webbing; and eight-way and zigzag springs, you can decide whether it’s worth the effort to restore or update a beloved piece of furniture, or whether it’s time to trade it in for a new one.



These two components make up every upholstered piece, but their materials determine the overall quality. (1) A top-of-the-line frame, generally custom-made, uses 2-inch-thick kiln-dried wood and is secured with dowels and glue. Mass-produced pieces usually have thinner frames that are glued and stapled; lower-quality versions are often made of plywood or pressed board

Inside the frame, (2) jute webbing is woven along the seat and tacked to the frame with a pneumatic tack gun. The webbing is then threaded along the back and vertically along the arms of the sofa. (3) Eight-way springs, tied coil by coil to the webbing, offer the most support and flexibility. Other options are zigzag springs and elastic webbing.

Optional padding types (4) are horsehair (real, synthetic or a mix), foam and polyester batting. The casing is topped with (5) layers of glazed cotton (terylene), which helps grip the upholstery fabric and keep it from shifting. On a straight-backed sofa it also supplies the comfort in lieu of cushions.



Structure aside, the cushions and (6) fabric on a sofa can also affect longevity. One way to prolong the life of upholstery is to opt for removable cushions so you can turn them over. The covers can be dry-cleaned easily, and if there is foam inside, you can see if it’s crumbling and needs replacing.

For filling cushions there is down, down-filled casing, foam and cotton batting.


What you Need to Know about Fabric Durabiltiy


As some of you may know from patronizing a house of upholstery or being one of our customers, there are a lot of factors to consider when choosing a fabric for your piece. One of the most frequent talking points and cornerstones of consumer education has to do with the durability of upholstery fabrics. Questions we hear from 9 out of 10 clients are: “How long will this fabric last? What is the durability of this fabric? Is this textile suitable for my household with children, dogs, and cavalier adults? What is the fiber content, and does that factor into durability?”

Taking a peek at the back of a fabric sample is very enlightening! It can tell you the fiber content of the fabric, country of origin, cleaning codes, and in most cases will provide a durability rating in the form of a Martindale or Wyzenbeek durability rating. In a nutshell, there is a number related to a mechanical abrasion test on each fabric. The higher the number the more durable the fabric (Of course, this all depends on how you treat it! We haven’t found a cat or squirrel-proof fabric to date.).

You’ll notice that the fabric above lists a 15,ooo double rub via the Wyzenbeek method.  Fabrics ranging from 9,000-20,000 are suitable for light to medium duty upholstery, and would work very well on pillows, bedding, or draperies. Low to medium impact residential applications are best for these types of textiles.

The chenille sample above lists a resistance to a whopping 150,000 double rubs! On durability alone, this strong material wins. It can stand up to almost 10 times the traffic compared to the sample above! As a general rule of thumb, 45,000 double rubs and above describe a fabric that can withstand a lot of friction, and may even be suitable for commercial interiors. The challenge when shopping is to find the cloth with a great hand feel coupled with the look and design you’re after.


Pantone – Color of the Year 2017


PANTONE 15-0343

A refreshing and revitalizing shade, Greenery is symbolic of new beginnings.

Greenery is a fresh and zesty yellow-green shade that evokes the first days of spring when nature’s greens revive, restore and renew. Illustrative of flourishing foliage and the lushness of the great outdoors, the fortifying attributes of Greenery signals consumers to take a deep breath, oxygenate and reinvigorate.

Greenery is nature’s neutral. The more submerged people are in modern life, the greater their innate craving to immerse themselves in the physical beauty and inherent unity of the natural world. This shift is reflected by the proliferation of all things expressive of Greenery in daily lives through urban planning, architecture, lifestyle and design choices globally. A constant on the periphery, Greenery is now being pulled to the forefront – it is an omnipresent hue around the world.

A life-affirming shade, Greenery is also emblematic of the pursuit of personal passions and vitality


The Cost of a Sofa – Part 2

Last week we started a discussion on the reasons for the vast differences in the price of furniture.  The first two points were about wood frame quality and spring quality.  Lets continue and see what other factors affect the cost……

  • What is between you and the springs is important as well.  The fill of the cushions in a quality sofa will be made of high density foam covered in polyester or down padding. Down is the most luxurious choice and can be the most expensive.  A combination of down and high density foam is a good option. Higher density foam will have a heavier feel and provide a long lasting, quality seat that won’t break down as quickly.  A low cost sofa will reveal the use of a lighter weight or less dense and often unwrapped foam.  The cushions will be much lighter and unfortunately lose their shape, sooner rather than later.
  • The upholstery fabric you choose is a very big factor in the price you pay for your sofa. You will find quality furniture pieces covered in beautiful, durable, tightly woven fabrics with a high abrasion factor, 15,000 double rubs or more. Leather, in this case, will be top grain and dyed all the way through, as compared to a cheap sofa covered in low cost bonded leather made from the scraps of hides.  A more expensive sofa will usually offer you many more fabric and custom options.

Higher end furniture (Let’s say $7500 and upwards) will provide you with comfort, fabulous style, impeccable craftsmanship, longevity and a very, very, high price tag. Mid-range furniture ($2500-$6000 for a sofa) will also provide you comfort, style, attention to detail and materials and save you the shock of the price.  Low end furniture ($2000 or less for a sofa) may offer style, function, and economy but could cost us all more in the end.  Affordable at the moment, poorly made furniture will end up in the land fill after filling your living room.

As consumers we do have a choice in where we put our dollars and most of the time you usually do get what you pay for.  Occasionally a high price does not always mean superior quality, or a good brand is fouled by poor store service.  If you do your homework or have a trusty friend who knows furniture, pointing out what to look for before you buy, you’ll be sitting pretty on furniture that you can feel good about.



The Cost of a Sofa – Part 1

Have you ever wondered what reasons are behind the vast difference in the price of furniture?

The majority of us have a budget and what we want and what we can afford are sometimes worlds apart.  However, most sofas these days are not created equal.

How do you find a happy marriage of both quality and price?  How do you know if it’s quality at all?

It all comes down to craftsmanship and materials.

The difference between well made and poorly constructed furniture……

When a sofa and chair is priced low, there is likely a reason. It usually indicates lower quality materials and craftsmanship.  The quantity of the items produced during manufacturing will also have an effect on the price. It is cheaper to mass produce a product, but this often reduces the quality and will not truly reflect the real cost of a single production. Some furniture manufacturers use an inexpensive wood base covered by several thin layers of better-quality wood veneer. The use of furniture-grade plywood, which is many layers thicker than regular plywood, has become popular over the last ten years.

  • The cheapest type of wood furniture is often made from particle board, thin plywood, press board or fiberboard. These composite materials are made from a combination of wood pulp, plastics, and resin.  You will often get nice styling for the moment, but don’t expect it to last for decades.  Frames made from plywood or particleboard might even be held together with staples, with additional layers of plywood reinforcement.  Being able to wiggle the arms or twist the sofa is not a good sign.

a NEW sofa in our shop for repairs

  • What’s inside the frame comes next.  A higher quality frame means you can use higher quality, heavier springs like eight-way hand-tied springs, where each spring is connected and secured by very strong twine and will spread out weight evenly.  Less expensive sofas and chairs will have a cheaper spring version and be constructed with just elasticized webbing instead of webbing with springs, or a springy metal coil, thus making the sofa more prone to losing its form and could begin to sag.

We will continue our lesson in “the cost of a sofa” next week!


Morris Chair Restoration

We’ve completed a beautiful restoration of a morris chair in the shop which has gone home to some very happy customers!

Morris chair - before

Morris chair – before

2015-11-05 12.37.40

Morris chair – before

Morris chair - after

Morris chair – after

Morris chair - after

Morris chair – after

Morris chair - after

Morris chair – after