Blue Bridgewater Sofa and Hurricane Mattheww

We survived Hurricane Matthew and appreciate all the inquiries about our safety. Matthew’s wind and rain swept in immediately after a Nor’easter had saturated the region. Our home  stayed watertight thanks to David and our son Michael’s preparations. Candles, flashlights, canned goods, peanut butter, jelly, bottled water, and juices got us through the first couple days.

Hurricane Matthew

The rest of the city quickly normalized but our neighborhood, with numerous downed oaks, pine trees, and electrical lines, languished 5 days without electricity. Computer connection took longer.

Let me go back to when life was saner, before Hurricane Matthew, and tell you about the Blue Bridgewater Sofa.

Craigslist Find

Michael discovered it on Craigslist and set up a viewing. He and David liked what they saw and bought it.

Blue Bridgewater Sofa

Of course, there was a problem. There’s always a problem. The owner hadn’t liked the sofa’s skirt. He handled that by taking a scissors and snipping the skirt off the sofa’s front and sides. He left the back skirt since no one would see it. I didn’t snap any Before photos.

Use The Warehouse Units!

Our goal for the last few months has been to restore our home to a living space. Toward that end, no furniture intended for sale comes into the house. That’s why we rent 2 warehouse units, and the plan’s been working.

But this sofa didn’t need much work. We’d have to pull out six million staples from the double welting, remove the remnants of the skirt, and staple down the same welting. Surely that job could be done in the house without much fuss or delay.

I forgot about Hofstadter’s Law, attributed to cognitive scientist Douglas Hofstadter, the author of Gödel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid (1979).

It always takes longer than you expect, even when you take into account Hofstadter’s Law.

I don’t remember why the Blue Bridgewater Sofa sat in our living room overlong — that’s lost in  pre-hurricane history — but David finally took the initiative. I recommend having a strong magnet handy when pulling out those six million staples. Off came the welting, threads, and material scraps from the snipping.

Blue Bridgewater Sofa Upholstery Tools

We removed the back skirt — it’s a lovely fabric —

Blue Bridgewater Sofa skirt

and re-stapled the double welting:

Blue Bridgewater Sofa

Hurricane Coming

We knew the hurricane would hit on a Friday. That gave us Wednesday and Thursday to stock up at grocery and hardware stores. David, bizarrely, insisted the sofa be placed in our booth at Avonlea Antiques and Design Gallery that Wednesday morning. We needed the living room freed up, he explained. He loaded up the sofa and headed to Avonlea. There, he saw the workers frantically preparing for the hurricane — which we needed to be doing.

Preparing for Matthew

David and I headed to the grocery store and searched for a parking space, and then for a shopping cart. Customers mobbed Publix but we tried to share a jovial spirit. I’m grateful to the dedicated employees who revved at a much higher intensity than normal.

Our street, a cul-de-sac, slopes down to the creek. A severe storm sends water rushing downhill from higher ground. Although we’re one house away from the creek, our neighbor’s house fronts on it. We anticipated water coming from various directions:

  • rushing downhill toward the creek
  • pouring down from the heavens
  • rising from the creek.

All of that occurred, but the creek water didn’t reach any homes. High Tide occurred earlier in the day or things could have been dicier.

Thursday Michael joined our preparations. He used a mattock to dig a trench to catch the water flowing downhill and force it toward the storm drain. Similarly, he and David attached a gutter with downspout to shift the rainwater away from the low side of the house. Our side door has a propensity to leak during severe storms.

They caulked around the door frame and bottom of the door, just to be sure. Not wanting to take any risks, David ran a bead of caulking along the bottom edge of the garage door as well. It all worked brilliantly. No water in our furniture-laden garage, which serves as our “on deck” for wooden pieces awaiting immediate attention.

Blue Bridgewater Sofa

Meanwhile, the blue sofa sat in our booth, looking sensational.

Blue Bridgewater Sofa

I researched sofa styles and discovered she is Bridgewater design:

Casual and comfortable define a bridgewater sofa design.  The arms are slightly rolled to the side and are lower than the sofa back.

While the bridgewater design fits in most room designs, it’s seldom going to be the stand-out feature of the room.

If you want traditional and reasonably comfortable in a sofa, consider the bridgewater style. It’s still a staple sofa style today… but it’s not nearly as popular as it once was.

Avonlea Antiques closed for 2 days and reopened to sunshine. Our Blue Bridgewater Sofa sold a week-and-a-half after David placed her in the booth.

Stay tuned for our next sofa project!

Ann Marie and David

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