View Full Version : minature leather upholstery

Dan Weiman
01-10-2005, 11:42 PM
Does anyone have any leads on where one might find materials and instruction on upholstering classic wooden boat seats?
Dan W
St Louis

Nick C
01-11-2005, 02:19 PM
I don't know how traditional you want to get, but old upholstry used cotton thread. It rots out fast, especially with a little sun and water.

As for sewing they still do it the same way in custom auto and boat upholstry shops. I used to be a trimmer and could probably tell the type of stitch used by looking at it.

The inside of the seat could be tricky without something to look at. They used horsehair and cotton as well as other materials for fill. I suspect the frames may have been made of solid lumber depending on how far you go back.

Leather is still available but as with all things it may not be the same quality. On the other hand it could be better because you can get imported cowhide from a colder climate which makes the hide thicker. Just the same a thicker hide will be harder to get a good fit.

I bet any custom upholstorer could handle making the cover and many will even make the seat. What you want is to locate one that is good and a bit of a carpenter. I'd look for an upholstrey shop with nice bandsaw in it. You don't need a bandsaw to do upholstry but it is darn handy for repairing and making wooden ones. A hacker would just have a hand held circular saw.

01-11-2005, 02:30 PM
Find someone with originals and take lots of photos!

Obviously foam was never used in cushions before 1960 or so. Most runabout seats were springs, then burlap, then cotton , then leather or russaloid - steel tacked. The loose floatation cushions were filled with kapok. I don't know of a good book on boat seats, so it's best to do some research.

Paul Scheuer
01-11-2005, 04:55 PM
minature leather upholstery Minature ?