From that to THIS....

...otherwise known as a "before and after"....
I am working with a lovely client in Chicago. I have never set real eyes on her home. Long distance design can be a challenge but I LOVE it!  Doing everything via email, links, photos and diagrams. Anyways, long story short, she just moved into her first home, a 2200 sq. flat in a lovely old building. The family room/library is almost done but I am always looking around for multiple room items at the same time. I check Chicago Craigs list, blogs and vintage stores to save money, upcycle and recycle. Here is a a hard-to-find PAIR of chairs I found on CL Chicago for $80 bucks each and a very reasonable sum to reupholster thrown in:

Cute huh?
I called Chris (the seller*) and he still had them. I emailed my client and suggested she go look at them ASAP. The thing about a good deal on CL is that you better act fast. 

upholstery is dirty but good bones
My client spent a handsome sum on gorgeous chairs and sofa for her family room. These chairs were a deal even with the fabric and upholstery costs. I prefer to recycle or upcycle or whatever it is called but the costs can end up the same as new. But not this time:

very cute from the side
 So now what? My client's favorite color is purple and she knew she wanted purple in the living room so solids were the best choice since this room is just in its beginning stages. I went to my first choice in solid fabrics, hands down, the best solid colors in the world in numerous weaves:

Designers Guild* heaven
We looked at the website together and picked some colors (although we wanted all of them) and samples were ordered. Getting a package of DG samples is like getting a package of the best candy ever:

narrowing down favorites
I adore contrasting welting and two- tone upholstered chairs. Fabrics were chosen and ordered through Susie*........A few weeks later THIS is what came. THIS is the AFTER part:


Lavender on the inside, lavender welt, deep purple on the outside and the buttons.

Wonderful from the side and back
Just unwrapped in their new home side by side.
These are the perfect starting point for what will be a fun but also elegant room!



  1. OMG, CAT!!!!! I almost can't even take how beautiful these chairs are ... holy smokes. I want them. First the shape and tufting, and then the fabrics you chose, and the detail in the piping, WOW. Please come over & help me with my place now ;)
    Nancy xox

  2. Wow! This looks amazing and I bet your client is so happy! I'm actually about to upholster some wing chairs in suzani and was wondering if I should do a contrast piping like black maybe? Not sure yet. The chicago apartment sounds lovely.

  3. As the client's sister, I can tell you that she is THRILLED! Can't wait to head to the Windy City to see all the magic Cathy has created with her client.

  4. CATHY B: PLEASE come back to the Pound! We miss you!
    Thanks for posting and the client has such excellent taste!
    Nancy: Thanks and you know I would help you with anything
    Brandi: Thanks and DO IT, contrast welt makes the piece so special.

  5. Send this to Design Sponge Before and Afters or I WILL!!!!

  6. Hi Cat! Those turned out gorgeous. Thank you for your visit on my blog the other day. I'm not the host for the show. I'm the author, executive producer and creative director of Querido Mudei a Casa' and for the last 3 years of the 7 years of age, also a part of the team of decorators, in front of camera. We have one diferent decorator every week and we are a team of 6. You can find some images on youtube if you want to see how it looks. Take care, Ana Antunes

  7. Dear Cat, Merry Christmas filled with love, peace and harmony. Take care.

  8. its lovely !!! love the purple :D
    have a nice weekend :D

  9. It is so cute!! Love it!!