French Country Cottage. Powered by Blogger.

Favorite things~Charles Faudree inspired settee

Sometimes you find something and instantly 
see something different than what is right before you.
In your mind, you see it with a little bit of love
and just what it can become.

One of the first things I wrote about when I started my blog
was about the settee at the foot of my bed.
From it's scale right down to the delicate carvings.
 It was a craigslist find.. that was perfect.

Well... okay.
 Not all of it was perfect obviously.

But the style was -Perfect.
The wood carved frame and all the details, details, details-  Perfect.
The scale- it is technically larger than a settee- but not as big as a sofa and is
 small and dainty in it's depth and feeling-  Perfect.

Now- the upholstery.  Completely another story.

 It was stained, dingy, worn, and stored in a garage where there were a lot of cats
coming and going etc.
I love cats so that didn't bother me.
But the cats loved laying on the sofa. For several years.
Which meant a lot of hair.

I might have sneezed the whole way home even with all the windows open in my car

But even with all that dust and wear and dings in the frame
within a few minutes of looking at it-  
I saw what it would soon look like in my mind. 

It would get a big red and white buffalo check fabric paired with it's dark frame 
inspired by one of my favorite designers-
the amazing 

Charles Faudree.

I know he is a favorite of so many of you as well.
I was so sad to learn of Charles recent passing and
wanted to share one of the many inspirations
his designs brought to my style and my home.

Charles Faudree was my first crush in the design world- and it was a big
gooey teenage girl kind of crush.
The kind of first love and feeling that you always remember and that has a special place in your heart.

I remember the first time I saw a Faudree room in a magazine- I think it was Traditional Home
 I was completely mesmerized at the beautiful, elegant and yet so welcoming spaces.
I studied each detail- noticing the color on the lamp or the style of the artwork
mixed with the wallpaper or wood planks.
They were like all the elements of a song- each instrument bringing something on it's own but harmonizing to perfection. His rooms speak to me.

The furniture- the fabrics, the patterns. All that toile, all that charm. 
I adore every room in his books-  and they are each treasured and referred to 
frequently in my library.
There are only 2 designers I feel that strongly about their designs
Charles will always be one of my biggest inspirations.

 I am a mix of styles and in our house-which is far less elegant and more cottage
than grand- I do mix it up.
 I am not just French Country or simply Cottage- or even just Shabby.
With an element of one here or a bit of another there or sometimes- all of them together 
hey- why not?
Not a rule follower over here- never have been.

Charles French Country rooms to me
 are filled with a welcoming elegance.

My look leans romantic and shabby as well- but I definitely have some French Country mixed in 
and when I first saw that settee & dark carved frame 
 style and petite scale...  I was soaring inside
 knowing it was the perfect candidate for adding some of that wonderful
  Faudree charm to my home

Now my husband on the other hand- was not feeling the love.
He was more feeling like I had lost my marbles... again. (common)
 But after cringing, shaking his head and giving me the look
he loaded them up.

Since I re-did this before blogging- when I didn't document each project
I will have to just explain the re-do and share a few close ups

I started by pulling the fabric off the frame all the way down to the horsehair stuffing.
Then came out the super sized (or 5) cans of Lysol
 and several hours in the hot sun just to bake away anything that was lingering.

(I kept each piece of fabric to use as a pattern for the new upholstery
 they got a good dousing of lysol as well)

The cushions themselves also got the Lysol and sun treatment- they are the original spring and horsehair construction and much better than foam cushions- so they stayed.

I found the fabric I wanted to upholster it in - on Ebay of all places
 and placed the order for 10 yards.
It reminded me so much of this fabric- which is Vervain


For reference- the sofa did not take the full 10 yards for re-covering- only about 6

I started with the back area
After cutting the piece that I needed from the pattern- which was the original
upholstery fabric I had saved-
I started by tacking it at one end with the cardboard strips for upholstery and using a staple gun
I followed it along the frame until the back was done and then pulled it down
and tacked it on the bottom under the frame.

The front of the sofa was a bit more tricky because the bottom of the sofa where the cushions sit needed it's own piece and to be pulled tight.
So- the back piece was tacked along the front under the carved frame and pulled down
pushed through the very back of the 'cushion area'  into the back crease
and then tacked underneath to the frame.
I hope that makes sense.
Then I repeated for the 'seat' area which is where the cushions sit on top of.
Tacking the fabric along the frame in the front
and pushing it through the same crease in the back and taking underneath.

It was a job- and it is one of those jobs where having someone
 help you- would be awesome. 

Next came the cushions. 
I decided instead of making cording- I would use a rope cording for the edging.
I was a little worried about the busy of the pattern on a bias, etc.
These are actually going to be re-done in the next few months and I will probably be attempting cording for them instead this time.
But the rope cording worked perfectly, honestly, for those of you who would
like to do something similar. 

The finishing touch was the rope trim- which is tacked onto the edges of the wood frame.
You can use a hot glue gun or an adhesive to avoid any tacking nails or staples.

Seriously- when my husband and I carted this piece into the house 
and placed it in it's new home at the foot of my bed...

I had a moment.

You know, the kind of moment that is filled with those warm fuzzies that
a Charles Faudree-esque piece brings to your design.

Welcoming, comfortable and elegant

and so Charles Faudree inspired.

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner


  1. what an incredibly special piece revived by your hands and love. beautiful.


  2. I love your vision, the sofa is beautiful. Charles Faudree was certainly an inspiration to many. I have quite a few of his design books myself. Your room is lovely.

  3. Beautiful! I know just what you mean by a "warm fuzzies" moment mine is usually turns into a happy dance moment. :)

  4. It's a beautiful piece, Courtney! Kudos to you for taking on the reupholstery yourself. I don't think I would have the patience to do it.

  5. This looks amazing. How did you tack on the white rope trim so that nothing shows? Great vision and big reward.

  6. He is one of my favorites too, and I have always loved that sofa in your bedroom!! You did an amazing job!! I would never attempt such a project......

  7. I was sad to hear of his passing too ~ fortunately he left behind all of his wonderful books, of which I have.You did a fantastic job on your settee, I think he would have loved it.

  8. Outstanding job! And thanks for the Lysol reminder. Linda@Wetcreek Museum Blog

  9. I was sadden to learn of his passing - he truly was a great designer. I love that sofa and you really did a terrific job on it. I would love to have it in my bedroom and Charles is smiling down at your beautiful sofa.

  10. And did your husband say, "you were right and I was wrong"????? And if so, what delicious icing on the cake. Lovely.

  11. wow....I just enjoyed reading this much!
    A settee is something I really want, something that I want to do a makeover myself, just like you did.
    Your settee turned out so perfect, beautiful, gave me that warm fuzziness in my mind, just like these pictures of Faudree's you posted gave me a little earlier :)

  12. If that were mine I would love it till the day I died! Reading this post about Faudre was like I was reading something I would have written. You hit on the word 'welcoming" and I so agree that is the overall feeling you get from every one of his spaces. What a loss, but also what a gift he was to all us lovers of Country French. Great, great post, thanks.

  13. You had a terrific vision and I love how it turned out! It's so sad that Mr. Faudree passed away. He left a wonderful legacy.

  14. Beautiful. Love your bedroom and your blog.

    Paula -

  15. Such a beautiful piece recreated with love.

  16. What a lovely settee; your whole room is gorgeous! Charles will be sorely missed by many. I had the honor of meeting him at a book signing a few years ago with my dd (she wasn't even in her teens then!). He was a wonderful person. We both had Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, so had our love of them in common. We will always treasure his books, as well as the wonderful memories of meeting him in person. Thanks so much for your lovely post!!

  17. The style that Charles Faudree decorated in is just so soft, warm, and welcoming. I think that's why he's one of my favorite decorators. I think you nailed the look.

  18. Mr. Faudree is my all-time favorite designer. His French/European style is so elegant and yet warm. His rooms always look welcoming, inviting. My late father was also a great fan of his style-masculine does not have to equate with a cave. Indeed my husband is also fond of the Faudree style. We will certainly miss seeing his beautiful work. He has left us a handsome legacy in his work.

  19. Love the settee! Charles Faudree was the best! His timeless style will live on for many generations.

  20. Your bedroom picture is truly iconic…your settee is truly stunning and knowing that you transformed it all on your own is amazing…i love Charles Faudree…he will be sorely missed…I cannot imagine not being able to buy another great book by him...

  21. Love the sofa, I am looking for something like that too. ^^

  22. Just beautiful! I love Charles Faudree too. I would love to add some of his design influence such as checks in home as well.

  23. Hi Courtney!!!

    When I first started to follow you, one of the rooms you showed was your bedroom. As you said, 'Your eye sees it and you
    fall in love and then the plans for it start rolling. Well, soon after, I saw on Craigslist the near same loveseat as yours. Same
    pink color and near the same design wood frame. I paid $40 for it(The sellers had another loveseat and full couch). The material
    was in great shape and I've left it.

    Your bedroom is gorgeous Courtney and I've seen Charles Faudree's work in magazines, but, now I want to look at his history
    and such.

    Enjoy the rest of the week!!!


  24. I love, love your bedroom and of course the settee. I just started changing my bedroom and when I saw yours in Pinterest I new that it was the one I will use for inspiration. I won't be able to have a sofa like that or fireplace since I live in a rented apartment but I will try to get the look and peaceful feeling of yours.

  25. Beautiful makeover for this lovely, elegant piece!

  26. Just Gorgeous! And so satisfying to bring a beautiful piece back. I love Charles Faudree too. I love how inviting all his rooms are and that there is always something in the design you can borrow. The most elegant rooms have something for all budgets to recreate.

  27. Just Gorgeous! Also very satisfying to bring a beautiful piece back. I love Charles Faudree too. His designs are always so warm and inviting. Even the most elegant rooms had design elements every budget could borrow. It was sad to hear of his passing.

  28. Well dine, it looks stunning! What a transformation :-)

    Leeann x

  29. The Lysol trick I've logged. The settee is beautiful I love large checks and of course Charles Faudree.

  30. You are so brave!! The sofa is gorgeous! I love the buffalo print - but you said you were going to redo?? I am really excited to see what you are going to do. Did you take upholstering lessons are did you just dive in?? You certainly are an inspiration.

  31. Oh, how I love a buffalo check! This is just beautiful and a gorgeous addition to that room. Nice work!

  32. Well deserving of a warm fuzzy moment! Love it. I hope you will share this post at my hop today. Hugs

  33. That settee is stunning and your bedroom is gorgeous. I love, love , love it all. Hugs, Marty

  34. You did such an amazing job! Everything looks so beautiful. I love the Charles Faudree pictures you shared too.

  35. It looks like it was made to rest at the end of your bed - just beautiful Courtney!

  36. Wow! Congratulations on a beautiful work of the heart.

  37. wow your sofa is just so wonderful, i love where it is and I love the large buffalo checks, where did you find that wonderful fabric...I adore the fact that you can sit on the couch and the arm rest is wood so it will not look worn and dingy, love that...thanks for sharing,,,

  38. Love your bedroom, and whole house. Sincerely love it. I was sorry to hear Charles Faudree passed away. His designs were incredible.

  39. Lovely - you did a stunning job. Love your bedroom.

  40. Really beautiful job! Cording is really easy to do in case you haven't tried it yet. If you did all the other upholstery work on this sofa then you will have no problem with the cording.

  41. Your beautiful bedroom is such an inspiration for me, I adore the big buffalo check fabrics you used, thank you for posting the steps on the french sofa, I plan on starting small, with a french chair, then working up to the sofa!