really, really, REALLY, complicated, and drawn out — pie.

three and a half years ago a good friend of mine from grad school was moving out to portland from austin. not only was i sad to see her go, i was extremely upset because she was getting rid of her couch. at best the couch was to be sold on craigslist, at worst, the couch would hit the curb (i shudder to think about that, even after three years). i had never actually sat on her couch PER SE, but had admired the clean lines and the “mod” nature of the piece for years.

in the end, she said she wanted someone to get the couch who appreciated the wondrousness that was THE COUCH, and so the couch became the newest member of our family, making the long trek with mike, charlie, a s&$% load of stuff in a u-haul, and I, across the country to new jersey. from austin. you know, austin; that fantastic place where i used to live — and don’t anymore. that austin. and the couch, after a life of being admired in the living rooms of central texas residents for at least five decades, lived in our shed. our dank, dark, shed. in new jersey.

the couch was about as amused with our move as i was.

so one year later, which means two years ago, a different friend, along with mike, and i were wandering the streets of a nearby town, perusing a neighborhood yard sale. somehow my friend and i got on the topic of recovering furniture. we both had an interest in recovering pieces we already owned, she a living room set, and i my lonely couch in the shed, but neither of us had any idea of how to do it. my friend exclaimed, “we should do it!” i concurred, “we should!” i thought, “we won’t.” mike proclaimed, “this is never going to happen.”

fun fact: tell me i won’t do something. go on, try it. it’s probably the fastest and most effective way to ensure that i will make it happen. i’ll do it, no matter what it is, just to piss you off.

the very next day my friend and i signed up for a re-upholstery class.

so for six to eight weeks we went to class to learn how to re-upholster. if i can just draw a picture for you of what this was like — once a week, my friend and i would load our respective couches (COUCHES! not manageable items like a dining room chair, or a living room chair like the other students had) into our cars, take them to work, drive them to class, unload them, work on them, load them BACK into our car, drive them home, and then unload the mothers from our car. EVERY WEEK.

obviously we didn’t finish the class.

we did, however continue the projects on our own. and while my friend’s couch was done  by sometime in the late fall- to early winter, mine was going strong into the following may (so if you’re following along in this fascinating time line, my couch was complete-ish 1 year, 4 months ago, and 9-10 months into the project). every day, in our tiny living room, i would have the couch upside down, or whichever other precarious direction, and bang on it (you’re welcome neighbor!). or i would sew. and then re-sew because i don’t know how to sew. or re-sew the re-sew because there are so many f%*$ing angles to the couch that it made me want to cry. what am i saying? i definitely cried.

and then the time came where the cushion, the back of the couch, and all of the other parts of the couch were complete, and all that was left were the bottom panels to finish the look of the couch. they were put together so that the nails were pre-arranged under the fabric, to maintain those fantastic lines. one would simply have to hammer the panels in to complete the project.


or impossible.

right. so, at nine (to ten) months into the project, and having invested way more more money than i will admit into the project, i looked mike square in the eyes, well as squarely as was possible with tears streaming down my face, and asked, “can you finish this for me? i just can’t handle it anymore.”

and he simply said, “sure.”

my hero, my knight in shining armor was going to ride up, dismount his hypo-allergenic steed (allergies, the poor dear), and hammer those finishing panels to the bottom of the couch.

and then a year and three months goes by with no panels. and i don’t want to pressure the guy, he’s under a lot of stress these days, and really is just doing me a favor, but finally, this past saturday, i looked over at him and said:

“so. how about those panels?”

and then he put them on. and now the couch is complete. ahhhhhh.


this may not be the most beautifully re-upholstered couch that there ever was, but i dare say it is the most appreciated.