+44 (0)1484 663 294

Blog

Distinctive Chesterfields Sofa Beds – Convenience & Luxury for guests

by Distinctive Chesterfields

If you’ve ever bought a sofa bed, you will understand how difficult it can be to find the right style, as the selection can be quite limited. Thankfully, if you shop with us you sofa bedwon’t have to worry about any kind of limit to styles we offer, as is made to order in the style that you like best. This will give you the chance to own your favourite chesterfields sofa with the option to turn it into a bed, for an unbeatably luxurious nights sleep for guests.

Best of all, no one will even think it’s a sofa bed, as the retractable bed mechanism remains hidden in the base until it’s needed. This will ensure a completely normal look, which will no doubt cause surprise when you finally reveal to guests the comfortable bed that lies beneath.

Our highly skilled craftsmen within our onsite workshop make each of our exquisite sofa beds by hand. This ensures an extremely high level of quality that we control every step of the way, so you will be getting the best each time you order. If we’re not happy with it for whatever reason, we won’t send it out until we are 100% satisfied. The strong beech hardwood base ensures strength and resilience and the cushioning provides a comfortable sitting experience when the bed is not in use.

Once you’ve chosen your preferred style, you will need to select the finish. By finish we mean the material and colour. If you’re thinking leather, choose from an impressive number of combinations with styles including Antique Olive, Deluxe Tudor Mustard and Premium Mahogany. These are ideal for traditional interiors but what if you have a modern home with modern décor? Then worry not, as bright modern colours are also available such as bright red and green! This is a great way to add a traditional touch to your modern interior whether it’s for home or office. Not only are there many leather options but also fabric in various colours.

If you’re really not sure about which finish would be best, why not come in to our large showroom to see some examples and a member of our team will take you through the booklets filled with various samples.

Discover more about our fantastic sofa beds by visiting the sofa beds page on our website or call us direct to discuss your requirements on 01484 663 294. Don’t forget that each and every piece of our furniture is made to order, so you will be in control of every aspect of your sofa bed, such as size, seating and finish.

Win Your Very Own Star, Courtesy of Distinctive Chesterfields

by Distinctive Chesterfields

Here at Distinctive Chesterfields, we rarely go a day without sampling one of our beautifully stylish sofas. We may be championing our furniture to customers visiting our chesterfield showroom, lounging on one of our couches in a staff meeting, or testing our sofas before their delivery to their brand new home. Which got us thinking, who, if we could pick absolutely anyone, would we like to share our own sofa with?

It’s a question that got the whole team thinking in fact, because it really is hard to decide just who you’d like to cuddle up on the couch with, if you could select anyone in the world.

3559

We put this question to our workshop staff, too, and you can see some of their replies here and here.

Today, we’re asking you – for the chance to win a star named after you – which three stars (and by that we mean celebs) would you like to get cosy on your sofa with, and why. This could be anyone – from a favourite footballer, to a well-known actress or comedian.

Choose your three stars and enter via the Rafflecopter form below. And because we’re talking about the stars you’d like to share your couch with, we’re rewarding the overall winner – selected at random via Rafflecopter – the chance to name a star in the sky after themselves. You could even enter on behalf of a friend, family member or partner and give them a fun surprise!

Enter via the form below – and good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Handmade Heroes: Meet Louise West, Lace Maker Extraordinare

by Distinctive Chesterfields

If you’ve ever visited an old relative and had your tea and cake served on lace doilies, we’re pretty sure your perception of the delicate material is 100% positive. After all, it’s such a lovely, dainty fabric. So who knew lace actually holds a bit of a dark history?! We certainly didn’t here at Distinctive Chesterfields. Not until we became acquainted with Louise West, anyway. Louise began bobbin lace-making in 1992 and after immersing herself in countless courses, she progressed with the skill quickly.

Gaining experience in traditional English bobbin laces, particularly Buckinghamshire Point Ground Lace and Floral Bedfordshire, Louise today combines her love of lace with her passion for fine silver jewellery – making beautiful pieces and selling them via her website, in between seeing her work in various galleries and exhibitions.

Without further ado, then, meet Louise West…

Louise West

Above: Louise West at work

Distinctive Chesterfields (DC) You take an old material – lace – and give it a brand new lease of life, modernising it and adding it to beautiful jewellery. What’s the general feedback/reaction to lace being used in this way? Positive, we imagine?

Louise: People love lace in almost all its formats, they really like the tradition of lace but in the 21st century it is hard to wear on a daily basis, but by incorporating the imagery of it into jewellery it allows lace to be worn daily again.  The function of lace historically was to make the wearer feel beautiful, now jewellery has taken over that function – if you are dressing up for a special occasion or to go out, you put on your best jewellery. My jewellery incorporates the tradition with contemporary pieces and the aim is for you to enjoy wearing it

DC: We’d love to know a little more about your lace-making workshops, which you hold in Derby. Can anyone come along? Or is it for already-skilled seamstresses and home sewers?

Louise: I run a range of workshops, with the majority of them being aimed at all levels including complete beginners, you only have to be able to count to four to learn the two basic stitches.  It is actually beneficial to everyone to have mixed classes as students gain confidence and learn from others in the class. For example, someone starts lace making and after a couple of classes they aren’t feeling very confident, but then someone new starts and they suddenly realise that a couple of classes ago they were in that position and that they have made huge progress. The workshops and classes are all about individual learning and progress, everyone works at their own speed.  You don’t need to be skilled in any needle-crafts to try it, and beginners can come along and borrow the equipment for the day before deciding to buy their own equipment.

Lace

Above: Top left, Louise’s own lace design, top right, lace in progress bottom left, an exhibition of Louise’s creations in Harrogate, and bottom right: wire lace

DC: Aside from jewellery, what’s the most elaborate way you’ve used a piece of lace creatively?

Louise: I think this would have to be the Nottingham Contemporary, with the concrete lace façade. I was employed by the architects to interpret an old piece of 1847 Richard Birkin machine-made lace, and turn it into a design that could be cast into concrete to cover the façade of the building.  There are 93 concrete panels around this large contemporary art centre in which the design is cast. It was a massive project both in size and commitment, as I was a first year full time undergraduate at the University of Derby at the time.  It was a challenge in so many ways but a fantastic experience and one that was partly responsible for the journey that followed into contemporary lace.

Nottingham contemporary panel

Nottingham Contemporary, pictured above

DC: What was it that initially sparked the idea to combine lace with fine silver jewellery?

Louise: This area of my work evolved rather than a ‘light bulb’ moment.  I had already started playing with the silver when I started an MA in Art and Design. At the same time, I was having a solo exhibition at Pickford’s House Museum in Derby, and they asked if I could produce work for sale alongside the exhibition. I had already tried using machine lace for surface patterning, and it was a progression to use my own work to surface pattern the silver. I took on a studio at the university’s incubation unit for small business start ups, Bank’s Mill studios and from there the jewellery developed along with the workshops in both lace and jewellery.  This continues to grow and I have recently moved into a bigger studio to cope with the demand and to be able to offer more student spaces.

DC: How is lace as a material to work with? We reckon it’s quite hard to use, with it being so delicate and all?

Louise: Lace is fantastic to work in, rather than work with.  It isn’t as delicate as it first appears, although you do tend to treat it like that when you have spent hundreds of hours creating pieces.  You design and make pieces in materials appropriate to their end use. I have created 3D sculptural pieces in wire, using traditional techniques and they are obviously not as delicate as very fine cotton threads. You can create pieces on a scale in thicker thread if you know it is going to get heavy use and washed frequently – such as edgings for table cloths. Even lace from 18th and 19th century has survived the rigours of time, and are still beautiful today. Lace historically was more valuable than jewellery and treated accordingly, with pieces being worn, removed and reused frequently.  Lacemakers today tend to treat lace more gently, often framing pieces so that they can be appreciated without damage

DC: What other hobbies take up your time?

Louise: I love doing botanical illustration but recently I haven’t had a lot of time to do any.  I also enjoy other textile crafts – Kumihimo, spinning, weaving, Stumpwork and other embroidery such as Hardanger and Casalguidi, although again I don’t have the time I would like to relax with these.

DC: How do you like to spend an evening off from work?

Louise: At the moment I am working a lot of new lace designs which I have designed, so sitting in front of TV and making lace. I enjoy reading as well but I haven’t managed to work out how to read and make lace at the same time.

DC: If you could share a couch with anyone –dead or alive – who would it be and why?

Louise: I think it would have to be one of the great designers from the 19th century – Thomas Lester. He was such a great innovator in the lace designs, incorporating animals into the lace, which were being seen for the first time at London Zoo, and also the plants being bought back by the plant hunters. His designs were so flowing and lifelike. One of his designs with ostriches sparked off my interest in working in a more 3D format and so led to the area of research that I did for the MA.  I have so much respect for his work and aspire for my designs to inspire today’s lace makers as his have done for me.

DC: Tell us something we may not know about lace itself?

Louise: Lace has a very dark history in places, with events such as public hangings being commemorated on lace bobbins. Justice had to be seen to be done and so everyone was given a day off and went to the hanging, lace dealers made bobbins to commemorate the day.  Six hangings were commemorated this way and the bobbins are often found for sale on the internet today. Lace is not the innocent textile that it first appears and this again adds to the fascination for me, the contrast of the apparently innocent with the dark history.  There are so many undercurrents of contrasts behind it.

logo with web

DC: Finally, what’s coming up for yourself and the business? Any exciting new developments on the way?

Louise: I have lots of events, talks, workshops and courses in the pipeline, including teaching all over the country this year and next.  I am also offering a new 5 day course in September in my studio in Bedfordshire lace, which is the area I particularly specialise in. (all the courses can be found on my website).  I am starting teaching for the WEA in Derby and Loughborough as well, so lots of new classes becoming available.

In addition to that I am working on a lot of new Bedfordshire lace designs which I am hoping to publish as a book next year.  I never know what else will happen and so always looking for the next new challenge in lace.

Thanks to Louise for taking time away from lace making to chat to us here for our Handmade Heroes slot on the Distinctive Chesterfields blog. Like these interviews? You’ll find many more like this by clicking here or directly on the ‘Handmade Heroes’ category in the right hand side bar of this blog.

Don’t forget to head to Louise’s website to view some of her designs online, or to ask a question about any upcoming or past courses.

The Grand Depart: Will You Be Watching?

by Distinctive Chesterfields

The Tour De France will be making its way through Yorkshire this weekend (today, July 5 and tomorrow, July 6), winding its way around the beautiful country roads in and around Holmfirth – home to the Distinctive Chesterfields office. Here in the office and showroom we’re very excited for the weekend’s festivities, which include a French style farm outside St George’s Square, and woven willow sculptures in and around Huddersfield.

Anyone visiting the area, or local residents looking to make the most of a bit of alfresco fun, will definitely want to check out the Kirklees Council website for all the details they’ll need ahead of the weekend.

Le Tour De France

Above: Top left: Holmfirth gets into the spirit. Top right: Local businesses make the most of the festivities, bottom left: Huddersfield’s St George’s Square is transformed into a French farm, and bottom right: Staff at Poppa Piccolinos get dressed up ahead of the event

There’s some great spots to watch the race in the district, with big crowds expected at Holme Moss, Ainley Top, and on the Huddersfield ring road. Businesses in the area are also getting into the swing of things, offering cut price meals and getting dressed up in the team’s jerseys.

Don’t forget: Our Honley-based showroom will be open today (Saturday) from 10am to 3pm – book your appointment here on our website, or turn up on the day for a browse.

Want A Camouflage Chesterfield Sofa?

by Distinctive Chesterfields

Since we started out in business seven years ago, we’ve produced some striking chesterfield designs: from the patriotic tartan print of a Scottish-themed sofa, to fuchsia pink wing back chairs, and even an AstroTurf couch for TV’s T4 On the Beach music festival. So as far as requests via our customers go, none has been too extreme so far.

We Can Recreate a Sofa You’ve Seen Elsewhere

Just lately, we’ve noticed something of a trend for camouflage chesterfield sofas, which prompted us to write this very blog. If you are one of the many people with your eye on a sofa of this kind, you might want to get in touch with us here at Distinctive Chesterfields, as we may well be able to recreate one you’ve seen elsewhere.

We can make any chesterfield-style sofa of your choice, and we offer a large collection of leather and wool swatches to choose from. But if you’ve seen something you like the look of somewhere else, or have a design or pattern in mind, you can source the fabric and we’ll do the rest.

1p1_camo_silnylon_roll_1024x1024

Seen a camouflage sofa elsewhere but want to change a detail or two, from the appearance of the feet, to the stud work? No problem! Simply speak to our sales team here at Distinctive Chesterfields, who will be happy to make arrangements to get your sofa into production.

Supply Your Choice of Fabric

Please note: We cannot supply camouflage fabric but you are welcome to supply one you’ve spotted in a fabric shop and we’ll take it from there. Talk to us today and we’ll help you find the couch you’re looking for.

DIY: How to Transform a Wicker Chair with Annie Sloan Paint

by Distinctive Chesterfields

Imagine the dilemma: You’ve inherited a well-worn family chair that’s been passed from relative to relative. The thing is, though, you believe it has no place in your home until you’ve ensured it can be incorporated effortlessly into your decor. After all, you haven’t spent years getting your home just right, only to have one piece of furniture throw the whole scheme out of balance!

So, what do you do? You do what our content manager Lauren did recently and head to the nearest Annie Sloan chalk paint stockist to give your old piece a much-needed breath of fresh air. Or injection of colour. Lauren was inspired by her pal Virginia, who’d taken an old wicker chair herself and painted it up using a pale lilac shade, before adding a homemade cushion and giving it pride of place on the decking in her garden (see below).

Purple

Virginia’s painted wicker chair, above

Next to Virginia’s efforts, above, Lauren’s chair doesn’t look quite as spectacular, but the duck egg blue shade she chose to spruce up her old wicker chair proved a hit. Here’s what to do…

1. Begin by selecting the shade of Annie Sloan chalk paint which will best complement the decor in your chosen room. The great thing about this product is that it can be painted straight onto almost any surface, requiring very little effort and overall maintenance. Lauren opted for a duck egg blue for her white wicker chair, and one coat of paint was more than enough to offer a smooth, streak-free appearance.

Paint-colors

Above: The Annie Sloan chalk paint range

2. Choose a good sized brush that’s suitable for the type of paint you’re using. Annie Sloan (the brand) offers special brushes which can be used with the paint itself; they’re perfect when used with this product, which has a unique consistency and can be watered down while still helping you achieve a good all-over colour.

3. Using your paint brush and a paint mixing tray, mix your paint with water (as directed on the paint instructions). This will help you achieve an even colour while ensuring the paint goes much further.

4. Covering your floor with plenty of old newspaper, place your clean and dry wicker chair on it and begin painting. Be careful to apply the paint evenly, and be aware that this paint can be a little watery. Avoid the product seeping through the paper and onto your carpet by painting your chair in the garden or yard if you’re worried.

5. Using a smaller brush, ensure you get into the nooks and crannies of your chair and use two coats all over if necessary. Leave to dry – et voila, a beautiful new wicker chair!

Have you ever transformed an old piece of furniture with a lick of paint?

Keep your eyes peeled over the coming months for a lighthearted interview with Annie Sloan herself.

In the meantime, you can also follow us over on Facebook to be kept up-to-date with news from the Distinctive Chesterfields workshop and showroom. We’re on Twitter too here.

Show Your Support on Armed Forces Day

by Distinctive Chesterfields

Tomorrow (Saturday, June 28) is Armed Forces Day – an annual event which urges the people of Britain to show their support for the men and women who make up the Armed Forces community. These includes troops currently serving, to service families, veterans and cadets.

a8d1eed22b4156f8eb678cafc7e6fce9

Here at Distinctive Chesterfields we’ll certainly be taking time out of our day – and week – to consider both currently-serving troops, veterans and those who’ve sadly been taken.

How will you be marking the occasion?

Velvet Chesterfield Sofas: Stylish and Luxurious

by Distinctive Chesterfields

When fixing your eyes on this beautiful velvet chesterfield below, no doubt you think sumptuous style, elegance and the ultimate in comfort. For some, velvet even whips up images of Christmas: cosy nights spent toasting your toes in front of the fire, and the soft touch of a comfortable sofa following a long, cold winter’s stroll.

Velvet Chesterfields Handmade in Our Workshop

Of course, Christmas is quite a way off and it seems odd to think about getting cosy by a roaring fire when our temperature control methods of choice for the time being include flinging the windows wide open, and adding a fan to each and every room. That said, it’s never too early to order a sofa in time for the festive period; with manufacture taking anything from four to eight weeks.

Velvet chesterfield sofa

Order your chesterfield to arrive well ahead of the Christmas period

We have a stunning range of velvet swatches to choose from, including the deep red you see above, to classic black – which will look equally attractive during the winter or summer. The really great thing about velvet is how comfortable it is to the touch. Aside from the matter of comfort  – a key consideration when buying a sofa – velvet chesterfields are extremely stylish, adding the finishing touch to your living room, dining room or conservatory.

Get in Touch

Looking for a completely bespoke chesterfield sofa or chair? Do not hesitate to get in touch with our sales team, who’ll be more than happy to ensure your sofa buying dreams become a reality.

Guest Post: 8 Tips for Great At-Home Entertaining, by Elizabeth Rago

by Distinctive Chesterfields

It’s summer, which aside from the promise of beautiful weather means one thing: party time! Whether you’re planning a family barbecue, or an indoor get-together with friends, you’ll love these top tips from Elizabeth Rago of Circular Home over at Inside Shopper. Elizabeth loves her home and is on a continuous quest to ensure it’s both ‘comfortable and a welcoming place to gather’.  A journalist, copywriter and storyteller, Elizabeth works from home while bringing up three small children. Elizabeth, our proverbial hat goes off to you! Over to you…

Elizabeth Rago

Above: Elizabeth Rago

Planning a get-together does not have to be complicated or stressful. Looking for ways to express the bits and pieces of your personality and opting for perpetual décor instead of spur of the moment pieces is the key to successful entertaining. That, and some yummy food. Here are eight tips for low-key entertaining:

1. Make a fuss about your entryway

The front door is not always the first point of contact for guests, case in point, my home. No one ever enters through the front door, making the rear entry of my home a gated patio the first greeting for visitors. Display a beautiful vintage sign or sandwich board to say hello before they even meet your eye. Pair with a fresh topiary on a small buffet table or make your own concrete planter/bar.

2. Don’t over-think the nibbles

Think – a simple crudité and items that can be eaten in one bite. The hors d’oeuvres should not take more time to create than the entrée. Better yet, investigate seasonal fruits and veggies, highlighting the flavors of the moment.

Image 5

3. Have a dessert table

Invite guests to move about once they are finished with dinner and relocate to a sweeter scene. Placing a dessert table away from the main meal will give guests a second wind and switch up conversation. If the weather cooperates, some fresh air will revive the energy of the gathering, so meander outdoors for indulge.

Image 2

Above image via Wedding Chicks

4 . Splurge on the centerpiece

Take some time to put together a centerpiece that is long lasting instead of a short lived impulse purchase.

5. Reveal your quirks

Let a little bit of your inner eccentricities out by way of interior décor and get the conversation started. Unconventional styling could be as simple as a wine bottle chandelier or displaying your strange obsession with the octopus.

Image 4

6. Have a toast or read a poem that defines the intended mood of the gathering.

“I like to have a martini,
Two at the very most.
After three I’m under the table,
after four I’m under my host.”

-Dorothy Parker

7. Have goodie bags

This does not have to be elaborate, rather, the more simple the better. Tiny pots of succulents to-go are a beautiful favor that will allow the spirit of the party to live on. Having friends over to watch the World Cup? Find out guest favorites and provide flags or vuvuzelas.

8. Entertain in the morning

I hate waiting until the evening to entertain. The anticipation kills me! Opt for a breakfast or brunch instead when guests are well-rested and full of energy.

Remember, guests are attending your soiree because they enjoy your company. Allow a few elements to really reflect the favorite tastes, sounds, and smells that frequent your home. Now sit back, relax and make merry!

Five Ways with Flowers

by Distinctive Chesterfields

So, the weather may not always be beautifully sunny here in the UK, but we can certainly pretend it is – thanks to the power of a few well-placed bunches of fresh blooms. If you’re a fan of flowers, you’ll know how they almost instantly make a room look better, with very little effort.

It’s why people add a bunch here and there to key rooms in their home when they’re preparing to sell, in the hope prospective buyers will snap it up quicker. And it’s probably also why people add them to both the  church and reception venue at weddings – flowers make everything look better. Holly Becker of the blog Decor8 knows this only too well, having released her book Decorate with Flowers recently.

With the on-going trend for gorgeous floral displays in mind, we’ve put together this very post: ‘Five ways with flowers’, to show you just how you can add a bunch of flowers to your home to add interest to any room.

fotor0528155835

1. Transform Light Bulbs

ef9da62549dc162af59a405a40c18c1c

Of course, electricity and water don’t mix, so ensure you find a good – and safe – tutorial online before you try this one yourself at home. Basically, it’s old light bulbs used as vases and hung up to create a striking feature in your living room. It’s such a simple  – and cheap – idea, but really quite impressive. You could add a stem of something pretty here and there; you don’t need to cram these makeshift vases with flowers – they look equally as good with a few simple blooms.

2. Add to Glass Preserve Jars

ea1a6a6cd39ddd51943324d8fb1a9da4

Ah, the classic Kilner glass jar! It’s really quite unbelievable just how many uses such a simple piece of kitchen equipment has. And here’s another cool idea for these glass preserve jars: fill one three quarters full with water, add a sachet of flower food and dunk some gorgeous flowers in. Next, add them to your bedside table, a dining room table, or a bathroom cabinet for a burst of fresh fragrance.

3. Create Vases from Soft Drink Bottles

Capture

An old crate makes the perfect holder for a bunch of fizzy drink bottles, each featuring a stem of something cheery. We think these Coca Cola bottles look great in this rustic-looking tray. Pop this display in your garden during summer barbecues, or place on a kitchen surface for a gorgeous, vintage-inspired touch.

4. Upcycle Old Wellies

wellies

We’ve seen this quirky trick quite a lot on Pinterest – adding flowers to a pair of printed wellies. These work just as well in the garden as they do inside, providing you’re careful when transporting them around the house – water spillages can occur, given that wellies are so wobbly! Why not add a pair to your hallway to add a nice touch when visitors walk through the doorway

5. Try a Lick of Paint 

jam jars

Chalk paint is a great invention in the world of DIY, as it can instantly be brushed onto just about any surface to create something gorgeous in the home. In the picture above, pastel shades have been used on old jam/preserve jars to make a pretty line-up of summer colour. Are you a fan of this look?

How do you display flowers in the home? Let us know by commenting below, and don’t forget to join us over on Facebook to see customers’ chesterfield photos and lots more.

Page 1 of 3112345678...»