The R-eco-very

BLACKTHORN VELVET IN ‘TEAL’

We’re all a bit guilty of judging a book by its cover. But just as a dusty tome could be harbouring untold treasures, old furniture may well have good bones lurking underneath a frayed, love-worn exterior.

If the cosy chair or sofa you’ve spent years curling up in has lost its lustre (but is still as comfortable as ever), often all it takes to revive it is a swathe of sumptuous fabric. Maybe your seat is a family heirloom that, despite having seen better days, has its sentimental value still intact. Perhaps the piece is more modern, one that is perfectly sized to fit a certain space or has a unique shape that renders it irreplaceable. Whatever the case may be, a little loving care can help good-quality furniture to get better with age, so that it can be passed down to the next generation. Read on for our guide to recovering your favourite pieces, so that they can keep on looking as inviting as they feel. Which, let’s face it, does matter when you need the impetus to finally sit down and read that critically acclaimed book with the dreary cover… 

PHOTOGRAPHY: SARAH DEAN

PALMERAL COTTON-LINEN IN ‘OFF-WHITE & GREEN’

MAJORELLE VELVET IN ‘HENNA’

@MULEEV

@BECKETTANDBECKETT

LIMERENCE VELVET IN ‘SKY’

SAVE YOUR SEAT

From colour to print to texture, the possibilities are endless when it comes to choosing fabric. How to dwindle it down? As we always say, go with what you love. The most delightful rooms are diverse, with everything working together in a wonderfully eclectic way – so, don’t be cautious about pattern clashing. If you want to pick out certain colours or details in a fabric to complement a room’s décor, feel free; if not, the rules are there to be broken. The same applies to matching the motif to your style of furniture: just because a chair is classic, doesn’t mean the print needs to be.

At House of Hackney, each one of our velvets, cotton-linens and jacquards is suitable for upholstery. While cotton-linen is known for being hard-wearing and family-friendly, so too is our velvet: with a rub count of over 40,000, it’s every bit as durable as it is luxurious and alluringly tactile. Though not quite as soft, jacquard boasts a statement-making appeal and celebrates a traditional method of manufacturing. In fact, all our fabrics are made in England by family-run companies located in areas where the textile trade goes back generations. So, whether you’re looking to recover an antique chair or a 20th century sofa, our fabrics will instil any design with a little history.

@THELONDONJOINERY

SAVE THE PLANET

When we say recover, what we really mean is rECOver, as it’s far kinder to the environment to reupholster than to buy new. In the UK, a monumental 672,000 tonnes of furniture winds up in landfill each year (the equivalent to 4.2 million discarded two-seater sofas). Unwanted pieces left abandoned on the street is an equally terrible fate that causes havoc to local wildlife. As well as protecting plants and animals, rescuing the pieces you already own saves 1000 times the amount of CO2 it would take to create something from scratch. The fabric you choose also plays a part: ours are not only produced using eco-friendly methods, but are free from harmful chemicals that damage the environment. That’s why we call them feel-good fabrics in more ways than one.

Once you’ve found the right fabric and calculated how much you’ll need, simply grab a staple gun and get going – that is, if you’re a DIY pro with more experience under your tool belt than just having watched a few online tutorials. Alternatively, we are always here to help with recommendations for upholsterers you can trust. Whether made by your own hands or that of a master craftsman, the result will be something truly bespoke to you. Lovingly restored to its former glory, your refurbished piece will be all the proof you need that, sometimes, what’s on the outside really is as important as what’s on the inside.

A WORLD OF PURE INSPIRATION

Whether you’re searching for design ideas or trying to imagine how a certain print would look in your space, why not browse our gallery to see how others have welcomed our House into the home…