Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The Saga of Our Mid-Century Sleepy Hollow Chair


This spring, we found ourselves a tad flush, which meant, of course, that the money must be spent ASAP. We decided to restore some mid-century pieces, one of which was this chair (the cat stayed home). Apparently, this is what's known as a "Sleepy Hollow" chair. Here's one definition: "An armchair of the mid-19th century, sometimes on rockers, having a single piece forming a high upholstered back and a concave upholstered seat." While it's clearly more from the mid-20th century, it's definitely got that cool "single piece" aspect going for it.

I'm showing it off because its fantastic looks are a stark contrast to the way it looked when we first saw it: The poor chair had sat out in the middle of a courtyard at an antiques shop, in the midsummer sun and through several rainy days and nights. Because it isn't an Eastlake or a Duncan Phyfe, the shop owners held it in such low regard that they wouldn't even bring it indoors.

Our furniture doctor of choice is always Hank Tosh of Tosh Mahal (see my earlier post to learn more about Hank and what he does). Taking stuff to Hank may seem like a weird way to get your kicks, but nothing is more fun than bringing a thing of beauty back to its glory. And Hank seems to feel the same way, because he is truly a master at it. And he's intrepid.

He had to be, as it turned out. He does a much better job at explaining exactly what had to be done to restore this chair on his blog. Check out the before pics and read Hank's blow-by-blow account of the surgery, if you're like us and you love to geek out on this kind of stuff.

13 comments:

Leigh Fitzgerald said...

Way cool chair! Is it comfy?

mcm guy said...

I love the Re|vival! great job...

Hank said...

Thanks, you guys! I'm glad you are happy with the work. Thanks for all the kind words.

Felicia said...

Yeah, Leigh, it's super-comfy, because it sort of cradles you. Great for book-reading!

Felicia said...

Hank, you're welcome. We really meant it -- and we don't give out praise lightly. (We're kind of jerky that way...)

Leigh Fitzgerald said...

Do y'all get Atomic Ranch magazine?
http://www.atomic-ranch.com/
If not, I think you'd love it!

Felicia said...

Yes, we're subscribers to Atomic Ranch. We also like Modernism Magazine -- check it out if you haven't already!

Chad said...

Hi,

My family just purchased a 1962 Ranch style MCM in Overton Park. Was wondering if maybe you knew or could point me to the direction of the Architect who designed it. It's 3820 Overton Park W, Fort Worth, TX, I know it was originally built for the Schmittou family and later purchased by the Horan family.

I visit your forum often and see you are very familiar with DFW MCM and thought perhaps you could help.

Thanks,
Chad

Dana@Mid2Mod said...

The chair is gorgeous. I had seen it on Hank's site, but I didn't know it was yours till now.

toniiii said...

Looks great!

Fiddlers said...

HI Felicia,

I am enjoying your blog! My husband Joey and I are the happy new owners of a funky and in great shape 1965 home in Burleson. 3700 square feet of unique features including a pink bathroom, yellow bathroom, beige bathroom, white bathroom, paneling, paneling, paneling, and a crazy sounding doorbell! We are very excited. We are looking for some design advice on how to move forward. Hiring someone who understands the kind of look we are wanting to maintain to look at our place and offer suggestions. In your travels and experience, is there someone you can suggest? Not quite sure how to contact you - this is our first blog post as well as our first 60's home, but would prefer to keep this post private and receive a private email at: tommyjacksonrules@gmail.com
Regardless of assistance or a reply, your Sleepy Hollow Chair is crazy fun! Thank you very much, Sherry

Tracy said...

I love this site - I'm looking forward to new posts!

Anonymous said...

I just came across this blog, and now I wonder who writes it. I must go read the About Me. Hank rules! I need to take a console to him.

- Chrissy