DESIGNING A SEAT COVER FOR A FAMILY HEIRLOOM
If you’re like me, you’ve inherited various furniture pieces from your family. It’s lovely to have these precious items that show a family’s history. After all, it’s all part of what make us who we are, and where we’ve come from.
But what if these items don’t appear to aesthetically 'fit' into your contemporary home?
I had this dilemma when we inherited an 80 year old mahogany parlour grand piano and piano bench. As a professional interior designer, I have always preferred modern furniture classics…… lots of marble and chrome and leather!
How could I successfully add these cherished pieces?
First, I placed the piano at an angle in a separate corner of our living room, and hung a large brightly coloured abstract painting behind it.
By isolating it, thus giving it a place of honour, the piano’s classically sculptural shapes became more prominent.
Yet it was still integrated into the room’s décor, thanks to the positioning of the modern painting.
Then, I decided to create a needlepoint seat cover for the piano bench. The only decorative pattern in the room comes from an existing silk Tabriz Persian carpet. To keep a contemporary feel, I didn’t want to add another pattern.
The carpet became my inspiration!
I developed the central design for the needlepoint seat cover by selecting
and rearranging various elements of the elegant Herati border of the carpet.
Smaller details from the carpet were used to create an elongated border to follow the rectangular shape of the piano bench seat.
I made sure that every colour of needlepoint yarn matched the carpet perfectly.
My intention was to respect the various classical oriental carpet details which, in this case, comprise a central medallion with rosettes and palm leaves placed symmetrically on either side.
An exquisite needlepoint tapestry is created!
So now the traditional piano and bench 'connect' with the more contemporary elements of the room.
We now have a beautiful piece of needlepoint upholstery on our piano bench…a visual pleasure now and a family heirloom for generations of McLeods!
To finish the 'look' I wanted for my living room, I created a Tabriz Cushion as well from similar graphic elements of the carpet.
Have a look!
Since putting the Tabriz Piano Bench with the dark blue background on the ZIVA website, I’ve had several requests for other background colours.
Each canvas is painted individually. So I can easily paint a different background colour on any design to suit your décor.
Here’s the Tabriz canvas with a black background as I painted it (photo above) for Nancy H. from Nebraska, USA……
And here’s Nancy beside her masterpiece!
Note the very clever use of straps to hold the piano bench seat pad to the bench top. Great idea!
Just as Nancy did, contact me and we can work together to develop a design that will work in your home.
What an elegant result with an ivory background!
It brings out the curved branches and the individual flowers of the design more, and creates a very delicate look.
I’m looking forward to seeing this one completed by my client.
What background colour would suit your décor?
REMEMBER ...These piano bench designs will also work beautifully on other seat benches!
The delicate TABRIZ design made up as a seat pad is well suited to this traditional mahogany settee.
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