cushions · Slipcovers

Outdoor Living: Getting Ready Now

When I think of January, I think of hibernation.  I grew up in northern Minnesota and it was always the hardest month to get through. It was brutally cold, dark and “closed up”.   Hibernation, a period of rest and sleep, isn’t a bad idea considering we just went through an extremely busy holiday season.  Our body and minds need this period of decompression and reset.  And then just like that we wake up (usually around the third week of January) and feel renewed and ready to tackle whatever the new year brings.

Now that the cold dark days of January are behind us,  the days are getting a little longer,  and more importantly, Punxsutawney Phil hinted at an early spring, our minds turn to “springing” up our homes.   But it is also the perfect time to access your outdoor furniture and cushions.  Stores have replaced their seasonal spaces once filled with Christmas decorations with outdoor living.  If your cushions are sun bleached, worn or you are just over the color or pattern you might want to consider recovering your cushions.   Sure, you can purchase new cushions, but there are a couple of things to consider before you do.

FIT. Have you ever visited one of the bigger retail stores and walked down the aisles lined with colors and shapes of all sizes and thought, “surely this one is perfect” only to get home and find it is to narrow, too wide, too deep, too whatever?

I have. It can be frustrating almost to point of wanting to get new furniture.  Some outdoor furniture have cushions shaped to fit your unique piece as you can see in the pictures above.

FABRIC.  Not all outdoor fabric is equal.  One option is a less expensive outdoor polyester fabric that comes in all kinds of prints and colors.  Since the UV rating is lower this fabric would not be ideal for cushions that would be in direct sunlight but would be a good option for accent pillows. But even in this category of polyester fabric, there are exceptions and new brands are coming out with better UV ratings and construction processes that make them better for outdoor cushions.

The color and print are stamped on the fabric after the fabric is made therefore making it more prone to wear and fading a lot faster so in time the color will fade and look dull.

If your cushions will be in direct sunlight, you should consider upgrading to a Sunbrella or Outdura type of fabric in a solution-dyed acrylic fabric.

The color and pattern are actually woven into the fibers as the fabric is made making it a perfect long wearing fabric for outdoor cushions.  You can tell it is a solution-dyed acrylic as the print and color are actually visible on both sides of the fabric.

The take away is that every brand has its own manufacturing process and the warranty, UV rating and fabric rub rating should be considered in your unique situation and use.   In the long run, the little extra money you spend will be worth it.  So now when you look at the store-bought cushions tags, you will know the difference between polyester and acrylic.

If you have cushions that need updating and purchasing new cushions isn’t an option that will work for your furniture, you might want to consider having custom cushions made in the exact fabric, fit and style that you want.  Now is the perfect time to start the process so they are ready when you are to get outside.

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cushions · Slipcovers

From Weathered to WOW at Willowsford

The Willowsford Lodge community center in Aldie, VA is so beautiful I could actually live in it.  It’s architecture and décor are modeled after a large rustic lake house with hardwood floors, wood beams, leather chairs and couches with cozy afghans, deer antlers, botanical prints and a kitchen to die for.    That’s probably why I fell in love with it and almost bought a house there a few years back.

 

Step outside and you walk into a large covered patio with a stone fireplace and tables, couches and a grill  for entertaining.  It would be a great venue for a wedding or party.07E7A44A-7DF3-49B7-9B68-C93FEB69466C And then you see the cushions.  (add sound affects….”brakes screech“).

 

As luck would have it, I recently reconnected with this beautiful community center and was asked to recover the cushions.   They would need a lot of work, as the foam in the cushions was compressed, stained, and crumbling and the back cushions needed a lot of extra fluff.Foam fiasco!

We decided on a high performance outdoor fabric, Sunbrella Hybrid Stone, a natural looking heavier texture in a lighter gray/blue/tan tweed.   It is water, stain and mildew resistant, washable and bleachable!   Most stains and spills can be cleaned however with water and soap.  Check out the sunbrella_stain_chart to see how to treat common mishaps on your outdoor furnishing.

5A4DE119-1D34-45ED-833E-5CB413B6116B

It’s amazing what the right fabric choice can do.  Sixteen chair cushions were constructed with a Velcro strap under the seat to hold the cushions on in the event of wind.

 

The cushions were finished in time for the busy summer season ahead.  I’m sure there will be many drink and food spills, but with the right fabric and care, these cushions should withstand a lot for several years to come.

BA56B032-AE12-4220-AC70-F072C6B20600

Speaking of lake houses, I’m headed there this weekend to spend time with all my kids and grandkids celebrating birthdays, graduations and baby gender reveals! Wishing you all a wonderful Memorial Day weekend!

IMG_1815detailsbydenise_3x5-smaller

 

cushions · Slipcovers

From Weathered to WOW at Willowsford

The Willowsford Lodge community center in Aldie, VA is so beautiful I could actually live in it.  It’s architecture and décor are modeled after a large rustic lake house with hardwood floors, wood beams, leather chairs and couches with cozy afghans, deer antlers, botanical prints and a kitchen to die for.    That’s probably why I fell in love with it and almost bought a house there a few years back.

 

Step outside and you walk into a large covered patio with a stone fireplace and tables, couches and a grill  for entertaining.  It would be a great venue for a wedding or party.07E7A44A-7DF3-49B7-9B68-C93FEB69466C And then you see the cushions.  (add sound affects….”brakes screech“).

 

As luck would have it, I recently reconnected with this beautiful community center and was asked to recover the cushions.   They would need a lot of work, as the foam in the cushions was compressed, stained, and crumbling and the back cushions needed a lot of extra fluff.Foam fiasco!

We decided on a high performance outdoor fabric, Sunbrella Hybrid Stone, a natural looking heavier texture in a lighter gray/blue/tan tweed.   It is water, stain and mildew resistant, washable and bleachable!   Most stains and spills can be cleaned however with water and soap.  Check out the sunbrella_stain_chart to see how to treat common mishaps on your outdoor furnishing.

5A4DE119-1D34-45ED-833E-5CB413B6116B

It’s amazing what the right fabric choice can do.  Sixteen chair cushions were constructed with a Velcro strap under the seat to hold the cushions on in the event of wind.

 

The cushions were finished in time for the busy summer season ahead.  I’m sure there will be many drink and food spills, but with the right fabric and care, these cushions should withstand a lot for several years to come.

BA56B032-AE12-4220-AC70-F072C6B20600

Speaking of lake houses, I’m headed there this weekend to spend time with all my kids and grandkids celebrating birthdays, graduations and baby gender reveals! Wishing you all a wonderful Memorial Day weekend!

IMG_1815detailsbydenise_3x5-smaller

 

Slipcovers

Cushions in Cameo Cove

 It seems we sort of skipped spring and have jumped right into summer this week.  Thankfully Jamie thought way ahead (probably back in February when we had similar weather for a brief period) and realized she had to replace her cushions on her backyard porch.  You know when they get to the point where you just don’t want to sit on them anymore and something has to be done.  They looked a little greener, felt dingy and the cushions were limp.

She looked at store-bought cushions, but because of the unique shape of her furniture, she couldn’t find anything that fit perfectly and would hold up in the elements on her back porch.  She opted for custom-made cushions so she could choose exactly what she wanted in a quality high performance fabric.

Jamie, with the help of her husband (yay, husband!), picked a Sunbrella solid fabric in Echo Dune for one side of her cushions and a stripe Cove Cameo for the other side to reconstruct their cushions.  She also picked a solid melon fabric to pull out the tiny stripe in the Cove Cameo to use as throw pillows.  

The foam in the core of the seats that had completely compressed. New layers of an outdoor Nu-Foam perked them right up.

 With the dual sided cushions, Jamie has options.  She can have solid chairs and a stripe loveseat or vise versa.  The pop of Melon on the reverse of the throw pillows was a great choice for a burst of color in the calming taupe and peach combination she picked.  IMG_2664What a difference! With eighties and nineties expected for this week (and with the pollen season done) Jamie and her husband can now really enjoy sitting on their old furniture with NEW cushions. 

More cushions coming!!

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