Spruce: A Step-by-Step Guide to Upholstery and Design [NOOK Book]


This is the only book you’ll need to learn the craft and art of upholstery from start to finish. With clear instructions illustrated by more than 900 step-by-step photographs, the five projects included here are designed to teach all of the techniques and skills you need to reupholster any piece of furniture to suit your own taste and style.

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Spruce: A Step-by-Step Guide to Upholstery and Design

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This is the only book you’ll need to learn the craft and art of upholstery from start to finish. With clear instructions illustrated by more than 900 step-by-step photographs, the five projects included here are designed to teach all of the techniques and skills you need to reupholster any piece of furniture to suit your own taste and style.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
★ 09/01/2013
Brown, a professional upholsterer in Austin, TX, knows how to breathe life into tired old furnishings. Her style is hip, eclectic, and delightful, and she injects her personality into the projects, showing off her upholstery prowess. Brown rounds out the manual by offering interior design options. Accompanying photographs demonstrate technique and illustrate each step. Readers will find information on skills requiring more detail, such as sewing and stripping furniture, in the appendixes. VERDICT Though the author only covers five projects—a sofa, an ottoman, and three chairs—she does so in such great depth that quality wins out over quantity. Upholstering is for the brave, and there are a lot of specialty tools here that might intimidate would-be DIYers. Despite these limitations, this is a wonderfully readable volume that speaks to current style. Very highly recommended for any DIY collection.
Design*Sponge - Grace Bonney
Few things make me happier than watching the people we work with here at D*S do well. Amanda Brown fromSprucehas been ourresident upholstery expertfor a while and we were thrilled when she told us she was working on a book. That gorgeous book,Spruce: A Step-by-Step Guide to Upholstery and Design, officially launched yesterday and is chock-full of beautiful (and helpful) upholstery instructions, illustrated by more than 900 step-by-step photographs. Upholstery has always been daunting to me, but Amanda is an excellent teacher and everything she’s shared in this book will help you master the techniques and skills you need to reupholsteranypiece of furniture to suit your own taste and style.
Pretty Prudent
If you have ever had an inkling to try to upholster a thrift store find, this awesome book can show you how.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781603429030
  • Publisher: Storey Books
  • Publication date: 11/1/2013
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 250
  • Sales rank: 184,370
  • File size: 65 MB
  • Note: This product may take a few minutes to download.

Meet the Author

In 2007, Amanda Brown left her day job and started Spruce, a furniture redesign studio in Austin, Texas. Her fresh aesthetic for interiors has garnered acclaim from publications including the New York Times, Metropolitan Home, and Southern Living. She produced her first instructional DVD, Spruce at Home, in 2011, as the first in a series. She is also the author of the "Upholstery Basics" column for Design*Sponge. She lives in Austin, Texas.

Grace Bonney is the creator of Design*Sponge, a daily website dedicated to home and product design. A native of Virginia Beach, Grace has worked as a contributing editor at publications such as House & Garden, Domino, and Craft Magazine. In 2006 Grace founded the Design*Sponge Biz Ladies series, a traveling event designed to connect women running their own design-based businesses with free legal, financial, and marketing advice.

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Table of Contents





Chapter 1: Getting Inspired and Designing the Space

PROJECT 1: An American in Paris: Upholstering a Louis Chair

CHAPTER 2: Design Plan and Yardage Estimate

CHAPTER 3: Tying Coil Springs for a Tight Seat

CHAPTER 4: Padding and Upholstering a Tight Seat

CHAPTER 5: Upholstering Arm Pads, a Picture Back, and Finishing the Chair

PROJECT 2: A New Pair of Slippers

CHAPTER 6: Determining Yardage for a Small Pattern

CHAPTER 7: Prepping Sinuous Springs and Padding a Tight, Boxed Seat

CHAPTER 8: Sewing and Attaching Fabric to a Boxed Seat

CHAPTER 9: Upholstering a Channel Back

CHAPTER 10: Finishing the Frame of the Slipper Chair

CHAPTER 11: Making and Attaching the Skirt and Back Scroll Panels

PROJECT 3: Spread Your Wings

CHAPTER 12: Calculate Yardage for a Large Pattern

CHAPTER 13: Spring Tying for a Loose Seat

CHAPTER 14: Padding a T-Shaped Deck

CHAPTER 15: Sewing and Attaching the Deck Fabric

CHAPTER 16: Upholstering the Inside Arms and Wings

CHAPTER 17: Upholstering the Inside Back

CHAPTER 18: Finishing the Outside of the Wingback and Applying Nailhead Trim

CHAPTER 19: Constructing a T-Cushion

PROJECT 4: Three-Seater Tune-Up

CHAPTER 20: Determining Yardage for Railroaded Fabric

CHAPTER 21: Spring Tying with an Edge Wire

CHAPTER 22: Padding a Straight Deck

CHAPTER 23: Sewing and Attaching the Deck Fabric and Tack Band

CHAPTER 24: Padding and Constructing Boxed Arms

CHAPTER 25: Upholstering an Inside Back with Back Cushions

CHAPTER 26: Attaching the Outside Back and Completing the Sofa Back

CHAPTER 27: Fitting and Sewing Boxed Cushions

PROJECT 5: Ottoman Empire

CHAPTER 28: Material Requirements for Diamond Tufting and Leather Upholstery 101

CHAPTER 29: Diamond Tufting the Cocktail Ottoman

PROJECT 6: Topping It Off

CHAPTER 30: Sewing Knife-Edge Pillows, Bolsters, and Boxed Pillows


Setting Up Shop

Stripping Furniture

Sewing Tips and Tricks






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I’ve been known to say that if I ever won the lottery, the first thing I would do is have all of my furniture upholstered in beautiful patterned fabric. And if I had my first choice of upholsterers, that person would be Amanda Brown.

When I was younger I thought of upholstery as something only fancy or stuffy people had done. I remembered all of the scratchy formal couches my grandparents had and couldn’t imagine ever being interested in such a thing. But in 2003 everything changed. I moved to Brooklyn, started immersing myself in the design world, and was blown away by all of the beautiful textile designs coming out from younger artists. Their fabrics were affordable, fun, and the opposite of stuffy. But unfortunately, no one seemed to be doing anything with them other than making pillow after pillow. Then I discovered Spruce.

Amanda Brown led the wave of upholsterers who started looking at found and vintage furniture and reimagining it with bold, contemporary fabrics. In Amanda’s skillful hands, old sofas, chairs, and ottomans were transformed into hip new furniture for younger families, and the community noticed. Spruce may have started as a local Austin business, but the influence of Amanda’s work and taste has spread across the country.

Whether you’re looking to reupholster your very first thrift store score or want to tackle every piece of furniture in your home, Amanda can teach you how. But she doesn’t stop there. Her ideas for combining different fabrics and using found materials like vintage embroideries will open your eyes to all of the incredible ways you can give your old or used furniture new life. Trust Amanda. She’s been teaching students to reupholster for years now and you’re all about to get a master class from a seriously talented — and tastemaking — master.

— Grace Bonney, founder of Design*Sponge

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 2, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    I'm certainly not the most creative person in the world, but eve

    I'm certainly not the most creative person in the world, but even I can follow the instructions in this book. Amanda takes the intimidating art of upholstery and makes it completely accessible to the beginning upholsterer and DIYer. This book is for sure on my Christmas list.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 16, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

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