Shopping FAQs


Can I visit the studio to see the vintage chair selection?

Yes, please visit! You may call and make an appointment for a time that’s convenient for us to meet one-on-one to peruse the collection and discuss your vintage project.


Can I bring my own fabric for you to use to upholster a chair?

We don’t accept a customer’s own fabric. We need to be sure that a fabric’s pattern, composition, and yardage is compatible with the making and function of the piece so we prefer to consult with you and order it for you. We sell many brands and patterns and can find the perfect one for your project.


What is traditional upholstery?

Traditional upholstery is the term for old-world methods of rebuilding and stuffing an antique or vintage chair or sofa. These methods use hand-tied coil springs, coir fiber, horsehair, burlap, twine, and cotton, stitched to form the seat, inside back, arms, or deck under the final cover. Sometimes a loose cushion made from down and feathers is appropriate. Sometimes we form a tight seat composed of a stitched foundation of hair or fiber with a second layer of horsehair stuffing and no loose cushion, depending on the style of the chair. These methods have stood the test of time, are authentic, and extend the life of the piece. 


What is horsehair?

Horsehair is an upholstery stuffing that has been used for hundreds of years because of it's longevity and suitability for seating pieces. It's a product from the manes and tails of the animal and sometimes mixed with hog hair for fullness. It's been sanitized and curled and is lovely to work with. It does not become brittle and crumbly over time the way foam does.


I don’t see the fabric I want in the shop. Can you get any others?

Yes! We can check out the websites of the best fabric companies to find samples and have them sent to you for approval. Or if you find one online, I will happily order it for you. If you’d like to visit a fabric showroom to view thousands of samples, a two-hour guided visit can be arranged for a fee.


I’m out of state. Will you work with me on a vintage piece?

Yes! I can send you photos of chair frames and have fabric samples sent to you. When the piece is done, we ship it out using top-rated carriers. If you want to send us your favorite chair to reupholster, we can arrange a carrier to pick it up.


How long will my project take?

A project can take many months, depending on how quickly fabric is chosen, what repairs or paint treatments need to be made to a frame, studio workload, and fabric availability. Because every project is different, City Girl Arts can’t guarantee a particular time frame, but we do our best to deliver a lovely result in a satisfactory manner.


Do you sell fabric?

Yes! If you are looking for top-quality designer upholstery and drapery fabrics, we can order whatever you want for home delivery. Come in and peruse samples, hire me for a trade showroom visit, or call me for an order. It’s easy. Some of the brands we carry are Schumacher, GP&J Baker, Designers Guild, Osborne & Little, Brunschwig & Fils, Zoffany, Romo, Pierre Frey, Fabricut, Morris, & Co. Kravet, and many more.


Do you sell other furniture?

Yes! I frequently find fabulous antiques or vintage pieces and display them in the shop and online for you to purchase. Some of them may need a little TLC, which we can arrange, and some of them are restored and can go home with you immediately! Check out the Found section of my online shop for pieces that can be yours.


Do you have ready-made upholstered seating?

Yes! I love to design and make extraordinary, high quality upholstered chairs that are ready to be placed in your home. Come in and take a look, or check out the shop!


Will you upholster my own antique or vintage chair?

Yes, we love customers’ antique and vintage pieces! We would need to look at detailed photos and assess the condition in order to best decide how to proceed. Some pieces, like more modern chairs, are not made to be reupholstered. We prefer to work with pre-1980’s pieces because the quality is set apart from more modern chairs and sofas. We do not work with modern chairs because many of them aren’t made to be reupholstered, and are not worth the investment that reupholstery requires.


Do you use foam?

Most antique and vintage seating pieces, even if they had been previously reupholstered with foam, adapt well to traditional upholstery methods, and deserve to be returned to their original composition. We frequently use foam in seat cushions, which are much easier to change when the foam sags or hardens. We rarely use foam in the body of the piece because of durability and chemical issues. Exceptions are mid-century modern pieces, many of which were designed to be made with foam.


Shipping FAQs:

We currently charge a flat rate of $299 for one item sent to your address. Additional charges apply for multiple pieces.

We carefully wrap your furniture and place it with a trusted carrier.

Once shipping is scheduled, the piece can take 1 to 4 weeks to arrive at its destination, depending on route and distance.

Pickup at the studio is always free, and must be scheduled in advance.


Don't hesitate to contact us for more information or with further questions.