One of the details we noticed a lot of furniture manufacturers doing down in High Point last week was using two different fabrics to upholster chairs (one on the front and one on the back). This is a technique that decorators have been using for some time, but it seems it’s becoming more and more popular in the furniture market, and even trickling down to more main stream stores like Ethan Allen (see gingham red balloon-back chair, below). We spotted this French Bergere, below, at the Hickory Chair showroom. The folks at Hickory cleverly upholstered the front in a wide stripe and the back in charming plaid check. Isn’t this a nice technique to give a chair a little something extra?At CR Laine, we saw this wing chair upholstered in a neutral linen on the front with a graphic pattern on the back. On a recent stop in to Ethan Allen, they were showing this balloon-back chair in a children’s room with a sweet gingham fabric on the front and a matching solid orange fabric on the back. We had no idea Ethan Allen’s pieces were so customizable!One of our favorite designers, Jeffrey Bilhuber, loves to use this technique on dining and club chairs. In this living room featured in Architectural Digest, you can see he used a stripe on the back of the red leather dining chairs and in the corners of the room, used two very different (but wonderfully paired) fabrics on the club chairs. In this sitting area, Bilhuber uses red on the back of the chair in the bottom right corner and pink on the sides. Great color combo!Below left, another Bilhuber space and right, a living area featured in Country Living where a bold stripe is used on the front of the chairs and the backs are down in a solid white. In this recently featured dining room by Tom Scheerer in House Beautiful, Sheerer uses a bold paisley on the front of the dining chairs and a gingham on the back. This combination of a floral or other bold pattern with a gingham or stripe seems to work well across the board. This detail is a great one to remember next time you’re having a chair upholstered. Upholstering furniture can be costly, why not make your pieces look as custom (and interesting) as possible?
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