Upholstery in the English Countryside

Hello! Happy Monday and Happy Election Day fellow Canadians! I hope you all excercised your priviledge and right to vote today!

With so much press coming in from the UK around the recent royal wedding, I decided it was a good time to discuss the upholstery courses I took last year in the UK.  Upholstery courses are few and far between in Canada, but in the UK they are fairly common.  This makes sense when you think about it.   The volume of antique furniture is the UK is much greater than here in Canada.  The older the furniture, the more value it holds, and so people are more likely to have these pieces restored/re-upholstered rather than buying something new. Therefore, there is a bigger need for trained upholsters, and so upholstery classes/courses are much more common.  There is a full curiculum of upholstery training developed by the thier accreditiation body, the Association of Master Upholsterers and Soft Furnishers.   Getting through the full accreditation would take months to complete, and alas, my available time was limited.  I completed two one-week courses instead. 

In the spirit of seeing more of jolly old England, I took a one week course from two different upholsterers/schools.  The first was at Kendal Upholstery located just outside of the Town of Kendal in the Lake District.  The town was lovely, and I learned alot.  I only completed part of a chair in the week but it was great practice.  And I met some great people while I was there as well.  Here are some photos of Kendal.

Entrance to the workshop in Kendal Upholstery

Progress on my chair on my last day

 The second week was at Tresithick Upholstery & Restoration, the Barn Workshop which was on the beautiful Trewithen Estate near Truro in Cornwall. Again, the setting was lovely.  Early spring in Cornwall is beautiful.  At Thesithick, my focus was to learn tufting!  I love, love, love tufted pieces, so I really wanted to learn to do it myself.  Here are some photos of Tresithick: 

My morning walk to the workshop through the Threwithen Estate property.


My Tufts!

 I had great experiences during both weeks, and I would recommend both as great places to take a course or to do a full accreditation. 


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