Monday, December 28, 2009

What Ever Happened to French Provincial?

I inherited this great 1950s French Provincial sofa from my great-aunt when she moved into an assisted living facility a couple of years ago.  It had been destined for the auction when I decided to swap out my late 1970s or early 1980s couch for it.  Around here, sofas don't sell well at auction.  This sofa originally had beige brocade upholstery, which my aunt had replaced in the late 1960s or very early 1970s.  I'm still not sure what to think of this fabric.  It's not on the top of my list of things I like, that's for sure.  On the other hand, it is in very good shape.  This sofa was always in the formal living room, so it never got any use.  What I would really like to do is reupholster it again in a dark red fabric to match my living room drapes.

I like the style of this sofa, as the French Provincial details are tasteful, not overbearing, just as you would expect from a piece of mid-century furniture.

Have a great Monday!


  1. A well made piece of furniture may be worth reupholstering, but have you looked into the cost? Eek! I always thought that whenever I found a piece I had to have redone, I would take an upholstery class and use it as my project.

  2. A friend of mine took an upholstery class and after that she not only redid all her furniture but started a little business on the side! French Provincial AND Early American Colonial--have to say I don't miss either one since that's all I saw growing up, and I couldn't sit on ANY of it.

  3. Add me to Christine's group -- grew up with it, didn't like it then, and have never missed all those wooden curlicues.

    But I would think some Craigslist buyer would love your sofa, Michael... and think of all the MCM goodies you could buy with the proceeds!

  4. You know me, Michael -- I love it, and the upholstery, too, actually. I kind of like the offbeat juxtaposition. But if it's a problem coordinating with your draperies..... Anyway, you are right, these older pieces of furniture tend to be very well built.

  5. It is very tasteful, I liek it! But I agree With you and recovering it to match the drapes. But Before you do it, I would ponder If you will ever change the drapes and or the paint in the room. I have a 1940's Davenport sofa comign to me when grandma passes on, she too recovered it in the late 60's and it bears a gaudy flower pattern but still ahve the orignal 1940's shape. When I get it I will provably have it redone in Turquoise (my signature color) and keep it forever.

  6. It's actually really comfortable. I've been sacked out on it quite a bit watching movies over the past two weeks. I'm sure that it's had more use in the two years that I've owned it than it has in the rest of its life combined.

    I have a pair of green drapes from around 1970 that came out of a house here in town that's being remodeled (I cringed - but to each their own). I'm thinking about seeing how they look instead of the red drapes. My plan had been to have them cut down and use them in the second bedroom, but I may have to rethink that. I just can't decide for sure - the red drapes are only a little over 3 years old. They were the first real purchase I made for the shack after I bought it.


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