Diamonds are a Girl's Best Friend.

Welcome to the grand finale of my latest restoration!  I spent Friday trekking to my friend's to retrieve my diamond chair, now all welded and super shiney in it's gloss black powder coat finish.  I started the trip by swinging by WXPN's free at noon because it is totally free and a great place to hang out when in Philly on a Friday!  I almost talked myself out of stopping for foam thinking I could fill with cotton I already had. As I was waiting to get on my ramp to cross town I realized that was a dumb move as the supplier I go to in Philly is a wholesaler and if I get home and decide my cotton idea sucks, my only choice is Joann's and that place is overpriced with a not always stellar selection.  So I got off 676 at 8th and headed to Katz's Upholstery.  I decided on 1/2" foam and got 2 yards.  I took my roll and headed to NJ.  My friend was at work so I collected my chair, left him a Vanagon part I picked up for him the night before at our local supplier, used the restroom and headed to an estate sale he tipped me off about.  Due to my slow recent sales and our strike situation, I was not in the market for much but I did snag 2 pair of vintage Sears binoculars and a cool melmac ash tray.  

I left town with a kick ass cherry pie and headed back to PA, just in time to take my kids to a dance at their school.  Of course I was thinking about my chair while my kids were dancing to 'shake it off' but the work would have to wait!  

Saturday I got to work on the cover.  Over the last week I opened the seam maybe 12" or so, then dumped out the powdered foam, scraped as best as I could at what was stuck to the fabric inside and washed in the tub by swishing in cold water with a mild detergent and rinsing a few times.  I did test the fabric and it is indeed wool.  I hung over the side of the tub to dry so as not to stretch the fibers.  

Washing the cover.  Yuck, eh? 

Washing the cover.  Yuck, eh? 

My first step was to cut the foam.  Remember, I am using in a 3-D contoured situation, so I realized I would need to compensate.  I started by cutting the left side to match the side of the chair.  Using a bag of flour to weight the seat down, I followed with the right side. There is excess foam now that needed to be removed so I decided I would cut a V out and the center top and bottom, then spray adhesive to close it up.  

Removing the foam excess to contour the seat. 

Removing the foam excess to contour the seat. 

My spray adhesive idea worked well once the glue started getting tacky.  I placed the foam inside and evaluated.  I thought a little cotton would help fluff it out a little so cut a piece the width of the chair and put on top of the foam.  The kids tested and said yes, the chair was comfy and they loved it!   

Kid tested. 

Kid tested. 

So this morning I got to work sewing it all back up and then took my pics.  I did decide to list the chair because I have a lead on another I could repeat this on and would like to save it if I find a home for this one.  So here are some pics, see listing on etsy for more details if you are interested and please send friends! If you know anyone looking for furniture and appreciates my era, please send them to my shops!  I would greatly appreciate the referrals! ✌🏼️  Thanks a bunch and thanks for all your support!  I had a great April in the mall!  Xo Malissa https://www.etsy.com/listing/279478194/knoll-harry-bertoia-large-diamond-lounge

 

Naked.  Look at her shine! 

Naked.  Look at her shine! 

In her threads. 

In her threads. 

Besides the foam deterioration, the cover is in great condition!  Charcoal wool with some orange ombré into white threads through like stripes.

Besides the foam deterioration, the cover is in great condition!  Charcoal wool with some orange ombré into white threads through like stripes.

The shock mounts were cleaned and conditioned.  They would be expensive to replace but luckily, these are still in great condition.   

The shock mounts were cleaned and conditioned.  They would be expensive to replace but luckily, these are still in great condition.   

Original label dates this to the 50's.  I suspect this is an early production chair.  So happy I could help it get ready for it's next 70 years! 🎉 

Original label dates this to the 50's.  I suspect this is an early production chair.  So happy I could help it get ready for it's next 70 years! 🎉 

Thank you and welcome!

I know I picked up some new followers this week and many folks stopped by to check out my shop and web page.  Thanks for coming!  I appreciate knowing people care about what I do!  Lots going on in the last week in my personal life and as many of you are aware, Verizon is on strike.  My husband is a technician there so we are really in a position right now.  I do appreciate any sales no matter how small as my hours at my job are now at about 12, which really is not going to help much in our household.  I am working hard listing and promoting, but I am at the mercy of the market and with that said, I actually have been cross listing a few items on ebay and set up a shop there.  I really do not want to sell in that market but at this point, I just need to sell.  Please share my info with anyone you know who is looking for items I have!  With that said, I have an album of Pyrex I plan to take with me to a swap in May.  You can find it on my Facebook page:  Facebook.com/madformodmalissa PLEASE stop by and have a look.  I will ship any item you wish, so please email me or message via FB for a shipping quote.  I also just listed a few items I never planned on selling from my personal collection including a JAJ yellow snowflake space saver and an orange Cathrineholm lasagna pan with carrier.  If you are in the market for them, act quickly as I do believe these items will not be available long.  If they are not sold by the time my husband gets back to work they are going off the market. 

The spring sale at my booth space in Fleetwood Antique Mall is in effect through the end of the month.  10% off a single item, 20% off multiples. All of my pyrex will be removed at the end of the month for my swap meet. 

Back to the Diamond Chair…...

This beauty is coming along and I hope to have some pics early next week.  It was determined the original finish on these 50s era wire diamonds is definitely a baked on finish similar to powder coating.  I know the current finish is Rilsan, a plastic which the chair gets dipped into and I believe would sand blast off.  The blaster decided that my finish did not need blasting and his powder coat would adhere to it as is.  He arranged to have it welded at the end of last week and I chose gloss black as the finish for powder coating.  I am dying to see it!!!!  There is little info available on the Knoll site on these classic chairs as they are only selling the smaller, dining height chair now.  There is a limited edition 24K Gold plated version out in honor of the 100th birthday of Harry Bertoia.  The whopper price tag is $2000+!  Surely it is beautiful to those who can afford it!  And of course, a fabulous tribute to such a great artist.  I am ready to tackle reconstruction of the cover but have been moving slowly only because I shifted gears to try to get more things listed and promoted.  I hope my next update has some pics to share, even if they are taken at my dear friends home in NJ!  With that said, the fellow who has been doing all of this coordinating is xtremeblasting.us.  He has done 6 old metal chairs for my friend plus some items at his home and my chair.  Prices are beyond reasonable!  I do not know what my welding is going to cost yet, but he quoted me $35 for the blasting so for that price, why do it yourself?!  Sometimes you have to pick and choose what battles you are willing to do yourself……I prefer wood over metal.  

To close, I will add a few pics of a little photo shoot I had today for some of my chairs.  Sometimes I think my pics really suck!  I don't have a nice wide open space to photograph nor proper lighting inside.  I try to take them all outside in natural light as I do think that is the best showing of the colors.  Today the sun was setting, and that always gives a bit of a warmer glow.  I set up in the grass today because some of my favorite vintage ads have to be Dunbar!  I purchased the only affordable book on them last year when I was restoring the pair of dining chairs I had.  A lot of the ads featured in the book were taken outside in the grass.  This chair lover is kind of loving that feel!  Do a little search and find some to check out!  If you are ever lucky enough to find some Dunbar items, covet them as they truly are the best made and most beautiful furniture I have touched to date!  xo Malissa

 

Orange accents.  Reasonably priced Viko Baumritter in Vinyl, Heywood Wakefield in Vibe Sunkissed fully restored and swoon worthy.   Indian Sari quilts in my shop as well!  I have 4 at the antique mall and 2 at home.  Great for music fests, picnics and soccer games.  Twin sized.  

Orange accents.  Reasonably priced Viko Baumritter in Vinyl, Heywood Wakefield in Vibe Sunkissed fully restored and swoon worthy.   Indian Sari quilts in my shop as well!  I have 4 at the antique mall and 2 at home.  Great for music fests, picnics and soccer games.  Twin sized.  

Baby blues.  Would love to keep them together as found but will split them up.  Beautiful new Vibe Aquatic upholstery and restored worn arms to original champagne.  I am a huge Heywood fan and collector.  Much love was put into all 3 chairs and each took about a week of labor to restore.

Baby blues.  Would love to keep them together as found but will split them up.  Beautiful new Vibe Aquatic upholstery and restored worn arms to original champagne.  I am a huge Heywood fan and collector.  Much love was put into all 3 chairs and each took about a week of labor to restore.

My cute photo bomber! 

My cute photo bomber!