Bertoia Diamond Chair Cover

This is an entire post about a chair! But first, let’s catch up:

I’m sure every person you know in California is all like ‘hooray fall weather has arrived’ and you are like ‘shut up Californians.’ But seriously, it finally cooled down and got all gloomy and wonderful just in time for Halloween. My husband and I spontaneously took a no-kid trip to Disneyland, and had the best time reliving our high school/college days. The haunted mansion always inspires, but there is nothing like it during the holidays. I will gladly stand in that line for 2 hours just to stare at the exterior decorations. My take away was that I need a million jack-o-lanterns for next year and that maybe I’m way more goth that I think because that place moves me. Trick or treating, as always, was a house creepers delight. We have some pretty sweet houses in our neighborhood and I’m thankful for the one day of year where I can non-criminally glimpse inside. I’m a little sad Halloween is over and the cheesy spider decorations need to be put away, but November is so packed in a really good way. I head to science camp with my daughter next week, then we have a big birthday to celebrate, then we are taking a highly anticipated trip to our family favorite PALM SPRINGS, and then it’s basically Christmas time! Pumped for it all.With all the festivities, plus an extra busy season for work/school for our family, house progress is almost non-existent right now. Minus two very exciting developments….

The first being a new to us original Bertoia diamond chair! I’ve wanted a vintage one in black and orange forever and it finally came to me. (If you can’t land a vintage one but want one of your own, they are still in production for so much money at Knoll, or several of companies sell reproductions.) The chairs are insanely elegant as is…my future architect is super interested in the bent square construction, melt my heart. But the covers, in orange specifically, push them over the edge.I think it will live right here by the fireplace in our family room (and maybe I will even track down a matching ottoman one of these days!?), but I need to address the cover first. The fabric is in stellar vintage condition. No rips or worn spots and only slight fading along the edges. The orange is vibrant and the texture is nubby. But there are some “vintage” cigarette smells and the interior foam is deteriorating, leaving lumps and dust. :(

I’ve never really had the opportunity to get up close and personal with a vintage cushion before and I naively hoped I could remove and replace the foam myself, clean the vintage cover, and be good as new. But upon closer inspection, that idea is wacko. It’s not like a giant pillow. The cover construction is much more advanced than I could ever replicate. The foam is cut and sewn in a 3D shape, and I believe spray adhesive was also employed so I don’t see how I could successfully remove the old foam, which throws quite the wrench in my uninformed plan.

I had a hard time finding detailed pictures of original covers, so in case any of you need some up close visuals of cushion construction, here you go. The front and back panels are sewn together and a channel runs the perimeter so that a piece of twine with hooks on the ends can hold the entire piece in place on the frame. string twine hooksI’m not sure where to head at this point. At minimum, I could use the chair without a full cover. Umm, see below (from Knoll)! Like I said, gorgeous as is. But the chairs are over the top striking and more comfy with upholstery. I had a few Instagram friends suggest an eBay seller (update: they sell on Etsy now!) that makes decent reproduction covers. Sounds like my best option, though I need a little time to stomach the unanticipated, though reasonable, costs. (UPDATE: I ORDERED A COVER FROM THAT SELLER! READ ALL ABOUT IT HERE.)Now for the other very exciting house development. YOU GUYS AND GALS I just ordered this table for our dining room!!!! My beloved Heywood Wakefield table is moving out and a crazy huge round tulip reproduction is moving in. I’m so excited, but nervous too. Thanks to all of you that weighed in on table size in Instagram stories. After much debate, I went with the biggie, against all traditional decorating advice. I can’t wait to see if it is gonna play out like it does in my head. Usually I’m very ok with design experiments bombing, but this isn’t an easy or cheap decision to reverse. Fingers crossed it works in our space. I’m sure I’ll share a big old post about it when it arrives in a few weeks.

Good talk! xoxo Jenny

6 thoughts on “Bertoia Diamond Chair Cover

  1. Wondering if you managed to solve the cover problem? I’m in a similar situation (Upholstery with a slight cigarette smell and crumbling foam). Knoll sells replacement covers but they are $700 each and I’m looking to avoid that cost…


  2. How did you remove the cover? I’d like to remove mine to clean and put it back on after. I see the two hooks, but don’t see any easy way to remove them with how much tension is on them. Thanks!


  3. Hi Jenny!
    Thanks for post! I cant afford covers and want to make my own pattern.
    I believe if you just fold your cover in half along the seem, (exposing hem or underside), and flatten out as much as possible this will provide your two basic shapes to be sewn togethor. I believe your body will contribute somewhat to moulding the cover to the chair but the most important element is the shape/curvature of that seemline!!
    If you could photograph the seemline I might be able to draft a pattern to update your post.


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