Chair Covers & Upholstery Materials
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, lands-capes, 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.
The 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.
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