About the Course
Learn about traditional materials and sundries, e.g. tacks, webbing, springs, hessian, horsehair, wadding and calico.
Learn about traditional methods, e.g. ripping out, to web, apply hessian, hair stuffing, stitched edges, apply calico, apply top cover fabric and trimmings.
Modern methods also taught.
Suitable for beginners and improvers. Small classes - maximum of 7 (seven) students. Bring your own furniture. Beginners should ring or email tutor for advice on what will be suitable. Upholstery materials and sundries will be available to purchase during each course.
Experience working in a real workshop environment.
Philip has 25 years workbench experience. He is a Certificated Member of the Guild of Traditional Upholsterers and recipient of The Worhsipful Compny of Upholders Certiicate of Merit
If booking with a CraftCourses voucher for part or all of the course fee, please fill in the contact form above. Your voucher code must be provided at the point of booking.
What's included in the price?
The cost includes fresh coffee, tea and biscuits (and sometimes cake !!) throughout the day.
Please bring a packed lunch. Tools are freely available for use during the course.
What a wonderful experience! Many students with more involved projects were returning for their 2nd, 3rd or 4th time. I was able to complete a simple chair in just one weekend. It was very satisfying to go home with a beautiful piece of furniture I’d completed myself. Philip has a huge amount of expertise and a patient and encouraging style of teaching. I highly recommend this course and I fully intend to return again in the future.
Kate - - #26353
I highly recommend this course, it was great. I was a complete beginner but Philip's patient and methodical approach meant that I could learn at my own pace. I am delighted with the result, my chair looks fabulous. I am now looking forward to finding a new (old!) chair to practice the skills I have learned but will probably be back to have more of Philip's expert guidance. In my opinion a Five Star Course! Thank you Philip.
Jo Green - - #26148
I can't recommend this course highly enough! Philip is an excellent teacher, the location is charming, and the other course participants were all friendly and supportive - it was a really fun weekend. And I was so proud of my finished piano stool! I have now got the upholstering bug, and will definitely be booking in for another course to upgrade my skills to allow me to tackle bigger pieces.
Caroline Willetts - - #23732
I absolutely loved this course. Philip is not only incredibly skilled but also a brilliant teacher, able to impart his knowledge and advice in a way that encourages confidence even in complete beginners. It was a small, friendly group which meant there was lots of time to talk to Philip and it was really interesting to learn from other projects. I finished the weekend with a completed chair and the confidence to take on other projects. I am hoping to join another of Philip's classes, with a more challenging project, in the near future.
I have no hesitation in recommending this course, you won't be disappointed!
Lynn Alexander - - #23668
If you're a beginner (which I was) this course is a must but, beware, you may find yourself becoming addicted! There were 8 of us and a great variety of projects were going on so we saw many techniques demonstrated. Philip's expertise is without question and his enthusiasm infectious. He has a wide range of materials for making and completing your project, including a staple gun. I would have no hesitation is recommending this course to anyone, beginner or advanced student alike.
Eileen Hewitson - - #23237
I loved every minute of this 2 day weekend course. Philip is an excellent teacher with endless patience and enthusiasm and he helped me every step of the way. I managed to complete my project in the two days, and am so pleased with the result. I was looking for a course where I could work on my own project rather than everyone working on the same footstool or drop in chair seat, and this definitely fitted the bill. I thoroughly recommend this course - so much so that I have booked another one. I met some lovely new like-minded people working on completely different projects, with different levels of experience and I found that this added an extra dimension to the weekend.
Tip: choose something very simple for a first project. I was amazed at how many steps were involved even for my simple chair seat.
Marianne Browning - - #22209
I was really looking forward to the course to enable me to move on from re-covering old chairs, to re-upholstering them. The course was perfect for that. Philip has a lovely way of sharing his knowledge and guiding you through each step, ensuring first class results. I learnt lots of new techniques and the correct way to do things at a pace that ensured a quality result. The end product I achieved surpassed my expectations. I thoroughly enjoyed the course and meeting the other participants. Like some of them, I will be returning with a new challenge. In fact I've already booked my place.
Wendy Evans - - #21484
I did an upholstery course with Philip last weekend. He is extremely helpful and knowledgeable. The chair and material I was working on was very challenging but Philip helped me to meet the challenge. I was really pleased with the results and will definitely be attending a further course. Thanks Philip.
Janice Tranter - - #20676
Fantastic weekend! I’m hooked and can’t wait to finish my project and start the next. Philip was lovely, very helpful, patient and knowledgable. A great group of people on the course. A range of projects and it was great to watch and learn different techniques.
Helen - - #19121
I was so excited to attend the weekend upholstery course and was not disappointed. Philip is a wealth of knowledge he is so patient and helpful. There were other people on the course that had been before and the group I was with were lovely . We leant other techniques From what pieces the group had brought in . I brought in a fireside chair and although I didn’t finish the piece Philip gave me the confidence and knowledge to continue at home . I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend his course. Definitely go for it !
I’ll be returning for sure !
Maria - - #19088
Fabulous 2 days. Phillip is very skilled and an excellent teacher. I took 4 dining chairs and finished 3. I got better with each one. Really good to see other projects and to learn from them. Two students were returning with a more ambitious piece as they clearly rate Phillip highly. I think i can carry on with simple chairs for now but can see me going for another course in the future. I filmed some of his techniques on my phone and have been able to look back. Just great.
Jacqueline Inwood - - #17604
A thoroughly enjoyable weekend course.
Although I had some previous experience, it was so good to take things right back to basics and relearn.
The projects that everyone else had brought were very diverse and I am sure that we all learned new skills like buttoning, which sounds straightforward until Philip explains about how the folds go and how to make sure that the balance is correct, all very technical and fascinating.
I would have no hesitation in recommending this course, we didnt stop learning and it all went far too quickly.
Pat Cracknell - - #16926
This was an absolutely brilliant course! I had a wonderful 2 days. I had chosen to upholster a little round-seated bedroom chair which apparently is quite ambitious for a first go! Philip's relaxed and easy style makes you feel that you can achieve, even as a beginner and I got a good way into my project. Philip will nurture, encourage and suggest, so you never feel that you have got anything wrong. I enjoyed the weekend so much I am booking again to finish the chair and to start on another project. Even though not every moment of the 2 days was spent on my own project, watching and learning from the other students' projects and Philip's own experience and explanations was incredibly useful and will stand me in good stead for projects I may tackle on my own. Philip was very good at managing his time evenly between the class (9 people) so that we could all progress. My group was all ladies so don't be intimidated if you are thinking it's a male-dominated thing! The venue was very good. Everyone has plenty of room to work, even on larger pieces and all the tools you need are provided. My project involved some sewing so I took along my own machine. I certainly learnt a lot and I'm really looking forward to the next course!
Yvonne Kerry - - #16885
Philip is very knowledgeable and paid great attention to detail and explaining why we needed to do certain things in a particular way. Was quite happy to answer questions, even ones that may have been quite obvious to the rest of the class with more experience but I was a complete novice. He shared his time evenly between all the students and was happy for us to look and learn from other students projects. I now have a completed reupholstered piano chair that will be being made into a footstool. Looking forward to booking another course soon to learn more skills in reupholstering.
Cat Roberts - - #16573
Both my husband and I , attended a weekend end course with Phillip, working on the same chair. Philip is an excellent teacher. We both felt on the first day, maybe we wont be able to do this, but with the excellent guidance by Phillip, we now are looking forward to booking another course with him to go a little further with our chair. Tea coffee and cakes were on hand through the day. We would absolutely recommend the course to anyone. He's a great Guy.
Jean and Pete - - #16569
Phillip is an excellent teacher, very patient and makes time for everyone on the upholstery weekends. Would recommend.
Jane Herve - - #16199
This short weekend course was great fun and an excellent introduction to upholstery. It was great to see my own chair and other people's projects take shape and I learned a lot. Philip made it very enjoyable and even supplied fresh coffee and cake.
Andrea Turner - - #16194
Very enjoyable and informative weekend.
Christine - - #14473
A well organised and informative weekend class led by Philip who is a highly experienced and intuitive teacher. With the different styles of furniture brought over the weekend by students, a richer learning experience is gained. Both modern and traditional techniques are explained and demonstrated. Philips undetstanding and experience of textile materiality is inspiring and incredibly helpful in application.
An infectious craft that will see you scouring antique shops forever more!
Joanna - - #14431
Philip is a patient and nurturing teacher who helped and supported me on this, my first upholstery course. His high standards and attention to detail, meant that my (nearly) finished projects look much better than I thought possible, after just 2 days. I now feel confident to finish my work and to also start on a new project. I had an arm injury when I attended the course and Philip was understanding about this and provided additional help when required. The tips and hints you gain from attending the course - not only from Philip, but from the group - are invaluable. I enjoyed meeting a lovely group of people at the weekend. I hope to attend another course in the future. Thank you Philip for all your help and encouragement.
Elaine Dunphy - - #14398
This was my second course with Phillip and as before it was excellent. Philip gives explanations, support and demonstrations in a clearly understandable way. He assists where necessary without taking over and whilst I didn't finish my rather ambitious project, I'm well under way with it and relatively confident on how I will complete it at home.
Philip is very supportive when things just won't work out right and the chocolate he supplied definitely helped spirits. I met a great bunch of people and everyone was very happy to assist the others when it was needed.
I would highly recommend the course.
Jenni Tuck - - #14371
I thoroughly enjoyed the Upholstery course Philip did and the way he thought us all. I had quite a challenging chair, but Philip kept me going and encouraging me to move onto the next stage until I almost finished the whole project. The atmosphere was lovely with everyone chatting and supporting one another. Fantastic way to spend my weekend :)
Thank you Philip for teaching me yet another skill.
Alini - - #13117
I spent last weekend with my daughter and a friend on this excellent course led by Philip. There were ten of us, all with different projects, which meant that as well as learning about our own piece, we had an insight into other techniques. I have been so inspired by the course that I am signing up to a longer course nearer my home. Philip is a generous, patient and obviously very experienced teacher, with a good sense of humour so there was some gentle banter going on in the room which added to the enjoyment of an already fun weekend. And he provided delicious hot cross buns and other goodies to keep up our energy.
Louise Virley - - #13088
I had an excellent first experience of upholstery on Philip's course. The weekend was relaxed and enjoyable with some lovely company, as well as being a great learning experience. Not only did I find out about how to tackle the projects I went along with, but also learnt about techniques needed for other people's projects, and with the variety of different projects around the room gained an insight into several techniques. I was very pleased with the outcome I achieved which for a complete beginner was not a given! I look forward to being able to attend another course.
Jane Henshaw - - #12713
I have just had a lovely upholstery weekend. I decided to come to this course, although it is an hour drive away from me, because I liked the reviews and I have to say I was not disappointed. Philip is a lovely teacher, very knowledgeable and allowing everyone to make their own choice once he explained what the options are. What was particularly good in this weekend, that you learn about tools, the correct usage, materials, and you end up seeing another 9 project and you are asked to come around and watch how things are done professionally. Philip explains everything so you really get to know about all the mistakes you can do as well. So I ended up learning a lot more than I thought I would. It got me really excited and I am now looking for new projects as well so I can come back and learn more and have a very enjoyable weekend.
Melinda Holden - - #12381
Having just completed my second weekend course, I am now hooked!
Philip is incredibly patient and knowledgeable and manages to balance teaching through modelling - without 'doing it for you'. He is knowledgeable and experienced, but very happy to hear our own thoughts on what we would like to achieve.
Both weekends were full of lovely, enthusiastic people.
I will be booking again for next year!
Thank you Philip.
Norah Richards - - #11776
I flew in from Hong Kong to take Philip's course and it was well worth it! It is amazing how much you can accomplish within the weekend under Philip's guidance, whose teaching method is very logical and easy to follow. I learned the traditional method re-upholstering an Edwardian chair. There were other classmates in the same class working on modern furniture. It was interesting to learn from what others were working on.
I am already planning my next trip to the UK to start working on another project with Philip. I highly recommend this addictive activity!
Esher Jeng - - #11750
I absolutely recommend a weekend on one of Philip Wellesley-Davies upholstery courses. Philip is a very patient and encouraging teacher and every one of us on the course was able to make great progress on our chosen projects. There was a wide variety of work so it was interesting and inspiring to see what others were doing. I was delighted to have finished my project even though beforehand I was concerned whether it was too difficult for a novice - but Philip was excellent and guiding me through all the steps but then leaving me to actually do the work. I fully intend to go on another weekend (or two!) with another project.
Jenny Spencer - - #11377
Philip is a great tutor, friendly, knowledgeable, and patient. He was very encouraging and inspirational.
We were a group of ten with varying experience, all with very different pieces of furniture, covering a wide variety of upholstery techniques. There was ample opportunity to observe Philip helping each of us with our projects and hence we could learn about springs, webbing, pleating, button-making etc, regardless of whether our own project required it. Throughout the weekend, Philip expertly demonstrated and patiently explained the 'whys and why nots' and answered all the questions we could throw at him. He supplied all the tools needed and explained their functionality and safe use.
It was a fun yet very informative and useful course, in a casual and friendly environment.
Great value and a brilliant way to spend a weekend - go on one of these courses and you will leave feeling like you have a new Super Power!
VJN - - #11145
I can only leave glowing positive feedback for this fantastic 2-day course with Philip. He is such a craftsman, and his knowledge so extensive it was great to be a student of his. The course is very well organised with everything you need, including lots of hot drinks and biscuits! The atmosphere was really good. I was one of eight in the group and it was nice to meet like minded and fun people, all with slightly different projects to work on. Peter is very good teacher, patient, encouraging and with good humour. He is very fair at dividing his time as equally as he can to all his students. I felt that I had learnt and achieve lots, even in just two days. I am keen to do more of Peter's courses in the future.
Lawrence Kitchener - - #10981
Great weekend course, learnt so much not only from my project but also observing others too. Philip who is clearly very knowledgeable indeed was very patient and kind, he would often during the course gather us round a table to learn how to do a specific technique, welcomed questions enhancing the overall experience. He had all the tools ready for you and you receive a full set of instructions before your first day.
My first project is rather large and ambitious and he is very encouraging indeed guiding me step by step to ensure I do the job correctly. I was able to send pictures and discuss with him my project beforehand so I arrived on the day with a clear understanding that it wouldn't be completed in two days. I am booked for the next one and look forward to learning more and more. Truly delighted with my progress so far as was everyone else with their smaller but completed weekend projects.
Vanessa B. - - #10691
Thoroughly enjoyed this course, Philip was a great teacher with a good sense of humour. I was pleased to leave with a finished product.
I would highly recommend the course and look forward to trying a new project soon. Thank you Philip.
Claire - - #10679
I really loved my weekend learning upholstery with Philip. Philip is a really good teacher and I felt we covered a huge amount in the time we had. I can't wait to learn more about this craft and will definitely be booking another weekend course with Philip when I can find a spare weekend!
Sophie Hammond - - #10140
Really good course and learnt a lot, nothing was too much trouble for Phillip even when I didn't always get it right He has a vast amount of knowledge and it was interesting to see how many different methods could be used to transform the furniture brought in by the group
He remained calm throughout the weekend, always encouraging us
I'm really pleased that I went as the course was a gift to me and it was well worth it
M Toms - - #10093
What an enjoyable weekend course of upholstery! Philip is a brilliant teacher with amazing patience and is very knowledgable and willing to answer all aspects of the subject. Great to meet other students with a wide range of furniture to also learn about. I will definitely be going back for another course and look forward to completing another project. Thank you
Nina Muir - - #9929
What a fabulous course this was for an absolute beginner. Philip provided expert advice throughout the weekend to everyone in the class and there were a huge range of skills and projects there. Even though I'd been slightly ambitious with my chosen project, I still managed to make excellent progress and pick up a whole load of new skills in the process. I've not transformed a rather sorry looking antique chair into something I'd be very happy to have in my home. I've already booked a place for Philip's summer upholstery course and can't wait to learn more. A very well spent weekend indeed!
Michelle Bernhardi-Toner - - #9033
I had an amazing time this weekend. As Philip suggested, I started with a drop in seat. I had never undertaken any upholstery before so this was a challenge. Philip is a mine of information, so helpful and patient.
Sue Mitchell - - #9025
I had a fantastic time reupholstering my rocking chair. Philip is a fantastic and patient teacher. It was great to spend a weekend with friendly people and see their different projects develop. I'm already planning my next project and look forward to booking onto another weekend course soon!
Georgie - - #8081
I thoroughly enjoyed the weekend upholstering my Victorian chair, which I was able to take home complete, Philip was a fantastic tutor, extremely patient and inspiring, it was good be spend time with a great group of like minded people all of whom had different items to practice on. I was so inspired that I hope to attend another course, I have certainly got the upholstering 'bug' and will be scouring the auctions/charity shops for another project.
Thank you Philip
Penny fairman - - #7817
What a fantastic weekend. I was quite a newbie having only completed drop in seat pads previously. Philip is a great tutor and with a variety of projects all in one place, and at different stages, he managed a lot of one to one tuition as well as group demonstrations . I am totally hooked and will be booking again to take on a further project!
And can I say the fresh coffee and hot cross buns were a lovely touch :)
Lyndy Bolton - - #7761
I really enjoyed the two day course with Philip. He is knowledgeable, informative and very patient. He really encourages you to ask questions and explains things to ensure you get the most of your time. I will definitely be hoping to move onto a bigger project and maybe attend a couple of weekends.
Richard Morgan - - #7332
Really enjoyed this course and managed to get my project completed within the 2 days. Philip has great knowledge and is patient throughout the entire course. Great to see what other people are working on as well. Would definitely go back.
Linda Foster - - #7318
This was my second weekend upholstery course. The first was a revelation and this weekend was no less informative and insightful. I would consider Philip to be an outstanding master craftsman who is able to impart his knowledge with incredible patience and skill. He clearly loves his craft.
I was initially nervous about my project but immediately had my concerns assuaged. Philip was positive and embraced the fact that we each had a different item with its own complexities. Philip reviewed each project so that we could learn from each other. The number of steps involved is a incredible but he guides you every step of the way.
Everyone got on very well with much good humour and banter. The hot soup at lunch and chocolates and freshly brewed coffee/tea was very thoughtful and much appreciated.
My first project was completed (select something small as a starter) and on this occasion I chose a more complicated chair. I ended the weekend with the most wonderful sense of achievement. My first chair is completed and the second is a work in progress so I naturally wasted no time and booked my next weekend course. Thank you so much Philip.
Marcia - - #6927
Another great course run by Philip. I took a slightly more complex chair this time and Philip was excellent at explaining the different materials to use and their merits. It is great to have a mixture of projects in the classroom as you learn from other pupils challenges. Philip is very patient and engaging and involves you in the decision making so you understand why things are done in a certain order.
Already booked my next course...
Lorraine - - #6913
I don't really want to tell anyone how good this course is as I would hate it to get so booked up that I couldnt get a place on it next time but if you want to learn how to do upholstery - this course with Philip is THE course to do! -I have been to three weekends and have loved every minute of them - Philip is an excellent tutor - he is very knowledgeable and explains things clearly - he is amazingly patient and encouraging.
A great way to spend a weekend learning a new skill and meeting some lovely people!
Emma Knight - - #6707
I loved every minute of this weekend. Philip is an excellent teacher with endless patience and enthusiasm (not to mention lovely cakes and coffee-time treats!). I got plenty of individual attention to help me almost complete my project in the two days, and I met some lovely people too. Thoroughly recommended.
Tip: choose something very simple for a first project. I was amazed at how many steps are involved even for my simple chair seat.
Kate Paterson - - #6677
As absolute beginners in upholstery we attended our first weekend course with a little trepidation. But there was no need as Philip is extremely knowledgeable and very experienced in the subject and communicates and teaches in a most pleasant and informative manner. Our group of seven was an ideal number as we were able to also learn from others who were more experienced and were undertaking different and more complex re-upholstery projects.
As the only male attending, I would wholeheartedly recommend other males to give it a go. I thoroughly enjoyed the learning experience. By Sunday afternoon both Nancie and I had a slightly smug sense of achievement, and our two re-upholstered chairs look very good.
We will certainly consider attending further courses with Philip.
Bob & Nancie de Lacy - - #6676
I have just completed my second upholstery course with Philip, both were excellent. Philip is extremely knowledgable and patient. Each student had different levels of ability and various pieces of furniture to upholster, using many methods of upholstery to restore the pieces. I feel I have learnt so much and thoroughly enjoyed both weekends. I am looking forward to tackling my next project in the near future!
Lisa Whitton - - #6667
A patient and knowledgeable teacher, Philip gave me confidence in tackling my very first upholstery project. The intimate group of beginners came with very different pieces to work on. Philip shared his expertise and everyone gained so much seeing the various challenges each person faced at the various stages of upholstery. We covered many aspects within the two days. Already looking for my next project and will be returning for more classes.
Kate H - - #6455
An excellent short course. Philip gently encouraged his students to tackle various 'projects' with quiet confidence, and provided his considerable knowledge and expertise to enable us to tackle some quite challenging upholstery tasks.
Lucy Turner - - #6291
Just returned from this fantastic weekend course. Philip is an amazing tutor and I learnt such a great deal in a short space of time. The course content is as varied as those attending and this allows you to witness many elements of upholstery that you wouldn't be able to with your project alone. Philip's teaching style encourages you to make your own decisions with your project whilst providing expert advice and support. The weekend is very hands on with time to stop and watch a demonstration on another attendee's project. Using the tools Philip kindly provided was an education in itself, in addition I now know what an essential basic tool kit consists of as I used each and every one. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this course to beginners or advanced alike.
I will be returning in the near future. Now off to source some more furniture for my next course with Philip.........
Alison Tanner - - #5987
I attended this course at the weekend and had a wonderful time. It was my first introduction to upholstery and I couldn't have asked for a better teacher and a nicer bunch of people to be doing the course with. I'm normally a nervous student, but Philip put us all at ease. We were given a toolbox for the weekend which saved us having to fork out on tools and the extra materials that we needed to purchase like polyester wadding, kaliko etc were cheap.
Before we got stuck into our own projects, Philip invited us to gather around each person's piece of furniture to look at how one would go about reupholstering it. Like another reviewer said, we learnt different techniques through demonstrations on everyone else's pieces throughout the weekend. It was great to see the progress everyone had made by the end of the weekend.
It was an honour to be taught by someone with such a high level of workmanship which is one of the reasons why I found the course such good value for money. I'm very much looking forward to the next course. Thank you Philip!
Ria - - #4921
Great weekend spent upholstering a dining room chair. Philip is a great teacher and very patient.. It was very good to have a mix of absolute beginners and some more experienced as the newbies got to see other projects and increase our knowledge of the subject. Philip would facilitate this by gathering us all to demonstrate particular materials and techniques. I felt Philip was very patient and managed to give each of his students the guidance and time needed to continue with our projects. I learned so much on this course and thoroughly enjoyed it. We had a lovely group of people which added to the enjoyment. Do not hesitate to book one of these courses.
Lorraine - - #4482
I've just had a wonderful weekend at my first ever upholstery workshop and I recommend it wholeheartedly. Philip was our teacher, who is incredibly experienced and knowledgeable and has a lovely, gentle manner in his approach. He nurtured us all through the interesting challenges our individual pieces of furniture gave us and I never felt like I was getting anything wrong.
The class is never bigger than 10 people which seems a great size - you get to learn different techniques through demonstrations on everyone's else's pieces, yet still get as much one-on-one time with Philip as you need.
Upholstery must attract lovely people as it was such a great group, so willing to help and share.
I could not have asked for a better introduction to upholstery and I can't wait to do more. I hope to visit another of Philip's classes in the near future. Do not hesitate to book.
Teresa Marks - - #4477
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