What's in a Name? ... Custom Upholsteryby Tavy at Howard's on 12/09/12
It seems that every upholstery shop claims they do "custom" upholstery, when in actuality, all they do is recover furniture. Today, most upholstery shops don't even know the difference. Yes, the definition of "Custom", in this application, is - made specifically for individual customers. Our customers assume that "quality" goes hand in hand with custom.
It's unfortunate to what's happened to our trade. The lack of mastercraftsmen is more evident now, than at any other time. It seems that my Dad's generation was loaded with plenty of expert mastercraftsmen. Over 90% of current upholsterers would be lucky to be apprentice's, to these past Masters! My dad, who is now retired, is now 80 yrs. old, and most of his contemporaries have either retired or died.
Fortunately, my Dad left our shop with an extremely well qualified staff. He led by example. Whenever decisions need to be made, we always refer to what my Dad would have done. Since the early 1950's, he was an upholsterer at different furniture factories. He joined his friend and past co-worker, Lee Marble, and George Howard in the late 70's. When George & Lee decided to relocate to Salt Lake & Palm Springs, respectively, my Dad bought them out and I came to help him.
What a transformation our shop has taken from then till now! The quality of our work was very good then. Now, we are at "the top of our game"! I've seen the quality of work that surrounding upholstery shops produce. They call it "Custom", I call it generic recovering. In order to generate a profit, most of them crank out the work so quickly, one can't help but know, the lack of time & attention that was given to the "ïnsides" of the upholstered pieces. Not to mention, the lack of new quality materials that should replace old existing padding. Other shops, farm their work out to "butchers" that work out of their garages. Yea, the same garage in which, their pet dog or cat sleeps! Then there are those shops, that literally take furniture to Tijuana to be "custom upholstered"!
If you would like to see a legitimate Custom Upholstery Shop, come visit us at Howard's Custom Upholstery, in Mission Viejo. You are welcome to see the quality of in stock supplies that we use, but more importantly, come see "the art of upholstery", in progress!
To those clients who's priority's are in quality and style; To those "who know the difference" and acknowledge that outstanding work is worth paying extra for, we are your shop.