the couch…

by Grace Bonney

after a pretty speedy turnaround, our couch is back! we’ve been watching tv on an aero bed for two weeks while our andre from room and board was reupholstered in hable construction‘s “bead” fabric. i chose a kelly green (mini-trend!) colorway called “green bean” inspired by lena corwin’s couch. i’ve been in love with lena’s sofa since i saw it last year and i decided our white living room could handle the dose of color and pattern. we used lore decorators (thanks to mindy for the tip!) and are thrilled with the results. it looks so jaunty and fresh. now to find pillows for it

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  • wow. it looks great. i, too, have coveted lena’s gorgeous couch. now i can covet both of yours! good choice!

  • okay, i’m jealous. really jealous. that’s all i have to say.

    (well, that, and i hope you enjoy your revamped couch!)

  • It looks beautiful – great fabric. I’m studying upholstery which whilst brilliant, is incredibly involved. I have huge respect for those who do such a professional job!

  • Very nice, the fabric is great.

    Now tell me how do you keep the cat from clawing the new fabric??

  • Thanks for sharing! As it happens, I’ve been thinking about having a chair reupholstered with that very same fabric. I’m not in “the trade,” though, so I haven’t yet figured out how much the fabric would cost.

  • I love this fabric!

    I’m actually working on reupholstering a giant sectional sofa I got off craigslist for $100. It’s a nice shape similar to your couch and very sturdy structurally. However, it would have cost a fortune to have someone else reupholster it. So I ended up buying all my upholstery fabric off eBay for about $200. The fabric is all similar coordinating shades of browns, various patterns and textures and not all the same fabric. So for instance the cushions are a patterned fabric and the body of the couch will be a solid shade.

    This is my grand $300 experiment!

  • Oh right! Like it’s going to be so hard to find groovy pillows for it! Have fun.

  • wow, the fabric works great with the style of couch. I’m obsessed with green at the moment.

  • SNap! this looks fresh and amazing! a million times better than the stock fabric. great idea.
    aproximately how much did it cost to get reupholstered?

  • I also love the Andre, but won’t Room and Board upholster in a fabric of your choice? Why did you have Lore do the work?

  • thanks guys :)

    i originally got the couch bc we were sitting on a seriously nasty sofa and we needed one asap. this was the only couch that fit in the door (you can see past entries for our sizing woes) and it only came in brown. there was a 3-4 month lead on a fabric change so we went with what we could get in a week.

    a few months later i decided it was worth investing in because i was miserable with the couch. the labor was $1k and the fabric was about half that. i’ve heard that you can find better deals than that in ny but this company came highly recommended and i was really happy with the results.

    as for blogging being lucrative- well, any job can be lucrative if you put time and effort into it. however, i’m not reupholstering couches every month. i think some people are under the impression that i buy everything i write about but in reality i save up for big purchases like everyone else.


  • is lena a good friend? does she mind that you copied her? i love the couch – I guess imitation is a form of flattery.

  • I think the couch turned out lovely – and the fabric/reupholstering made it your own. It’s your money – so spend it on whatever you please, right? I don’t get why people need to judge you for that.

  • It looks fantastic! Wish I had the guts to do something that neat. :-p Are you still happy with the Andre comfort-wise for tv watching and cuddling? I’m about a month away from buying a new couch, and I thought the Andre was comfy when I sat in it at R&B…but ten minutes at the store is very different from plopping down for an evening to watch a movie.

  • I love the fabric, I went to the hable website but cant find it, can you post a link to where I can get the fabric?

  • the comfort level is pretty good for the couch- if we had a wider door i definitely would have gotten a deeper couch. if you can fit a bigger one in i’d try the jasper or the petrie from crate and b. they’re a wee bit comfier but have the same look with tufted cushions.

    i cant link directly to the flash page on hable but if you click on “fabric” and then “collections” you can’t miss it on the right :)


  • Your couch looks great, and your cat seems to like it, too. Both the pattern and the color are really fresh – just lovely!

  • that looks so great. i really think that if you have a good piece of furniture and you can manage to pay to have it upholstered in something you really love its totally worth it. hable has some pretty good ethics when it comes to printing fabric and they are super nice people. you should send them an image of your couch. maybe this will convince thor that a pomegranante couch would be awesome in our living room.

  • I apologize, but being a total newbie at this…redragtophow do you buy upholstery fabric that is sold only “to the trade”?

  • the couch looks so lovely. is it possible, though, to buy hable fabric if you’re not in the trade? would you have to buy it through a third party who is? I love the “concepts” images on their website, especially the lampshades.

  • It’s stunning! I almost scored a chair of ebay wanting to recover it in the same fabric until I found out that it’s trade only. I was crushed!

  • looks great grace! i love lena’s sofa, too.

    i am having a little buyer’s remorse on the jasper. it looks great, but it’s not that comfy – hard to really curl up on. room & board has an amazing exchange policy, though, so i’m seriously considering swapping out with the Modern.

  • p.s. i love that your andre will be different than any other and reflect your own signature style. well done. :)

  • I love the print on this. And the style of the sofa…and the cat. It all looks so comfy.

  • I love what you’ve done with the couch! I’m also looking at trade-only fabric, but I guess the only way to get it for us non trade people is through ebay.

    I’m also in the market for a modern looking couch. Has anyone bought or tried R&B’s Lenox couch?

  • I’m curious to know who you purchased the fabric through? I priced the Bead pettern for upholstering a day bed and it was far more expensive than what you paid! about $150/yd. thanks

  • i just called hable and ordered the fabric through one of their employees. i didn’t even think to ask, but then again, they know me. i got a standard press discount so that definitely helped (though i think $150/yd is the “public” price, i think the standard trade-only rate is much lower). but i’m pretty sure you could just call and place an order- you’ll probably get a price higher than their designer price but i bet they’d still sell it to you.

    another option is to check out the post i did on this fabric from last year- a very nice interior designer commented in the comment section and offered to place orders for anyone who needed help with trade-only pieces. :)


  • HI, I commented last year about being able to get Hable fabric. I have some samples and am an interior decorator who has worked with Hable in the past. Anyone interested can email me at
    cbroach1@cox.net and I will be glad to help.

  • We have two R&B sofas-one that has the modern aesthetic we like and one that is all about comfort. I would love to reupholster one of them and am inspired :).

    BTW I can’t believe that snarky comment about blogging being lucrative. How seriously rude. Your success is well-deserved and we’re glad that you share your personal design ideas with us.
    Geez, that person needs to get a life.


  • that is such a gorgeous fabric and colour! it’s a GREAT lounge! would you mind me asking how much that cost to reupholster? (fabric included) thanks!!!!

  • yeah, especially because grace doesn’t only blog, she’s also an editor at H&G!! And a freelance writer!!! So…back to the drawing board for that one jerk to come up with something else crummy to say. Envy is a horrible beast.

    Anyway, the sofa looks great! But have the kitties started to shred it ?

    And for the to the trade question– it just means you have to go to someone who resells the fabric instead of buying it directly unless you are an interior designer or something similar as a profession.

  • I’d be curious to know how the Hable fabric stands up on furniture, particularly with stains and general wear and tear? Does anyone know if it’s treated? Or just heavy cotton canvas?