Before & After: A Textile Designer Gives An Old Sofa A New Life


A few months ago, we featured the beautiful work of Georgia-based textile designer Kathryn Maresca. While we were immediately drawn to her talents with color and pattern, it turns out that she is also quite skilled at salvaging old, beat-up furniture. This old sofa, despite its funky watermelon color scheme, was in tremendous need of some TLC when Kathryn came across it. Using her own silkscreened fabric and upholstery tips gleaned from our own site, she was able to turn the once worn-down piece into a shining eye-catcher. The colors especially appeal to our newly-acquired nautical obsession (no, we’re not over it) and the untreated fabric on the seat provides a beautiful natural contrast to the sofa’s otherwise tidy frame. Check out more photos of this wonderful update after the jump! To tackle your own upholstery project, check out our Upholstery Basics column!

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  1. That love seat has such great lines to it. What a find. Love the new lighter color upholstery, really lets the frame stand out.

  2. Sue says:

    I love this sofa. The size, the shape and now, the color. It is comfy looking as well.

  3. Vanessa says:

    Yes, I like that very much. Is it comfy?

  4. Taba says:

    love, love, love. print and plain, traditional and contemporary. can’t get any better than that with furniture.

  5. Christiane says:

    I’m such a fan of her textiles! I was just on her site and noticed she has a kickstarter campaign going on at the moment–I’ll attach the link!

  6. Chrissy B says:

    oh la la I love it! What a great pattern! Gonna buy that throw pillow….right now!

  7. Oh wow, that is stunning! Love the upgrade.

  8. Iris says:

    It looks great after in a more some will say “sophisticated” manner but I kind of wish it hadn’t been such a rad chair to begin with!

  9. The “after” is totally beautiful, it is a really gorgeous fabric and makeover—but holy cow the “before” fabric is cool! Would love to know if the designer kept some of it to make pillows or something.

  10. amanda says:

    Super pretty. I wasn’t sold on the cream cushion until I saw the contrasting throw pillows. Then it totally made sense.

  11. Miss Heliotrope says:

    I quite liked the before…

  12. Susan L. says:

    LOVE IT. Well done.

  13. erinorea says:

    bwaaa ha ha!

  14. Heather says:

    I love this! The “after” is gorgeous. I adore the throw pillows!

  15. Taylor says:

    Gorgeous makeover! Toss cushions are super fab too :) Great work!

  16. another option: leave the, assuming it’s intact, upholstery and paint the wood–

  17. Brigitte says:

    Wow, just went to the kickstarter site…she really does have amazing fabrics! Hope she gets her goal. Plan on helping out myself!

  18. She did a great job with that sofa, it looks like new! I really enjoy your blog and the tips you give. The ones on upholstery in particular are very useful, more than once I’ve found the answers I need from your posts. The upholstered furniture should be maintained on a regular basis and people should be very delicate towards it. Which means no dirty clothing and buckles and other elements which can harm the fabric!


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