Gillian Porter, Upholstery Apprentice
Gillian has recently moved into upholstery as a more practical career option after many years of working in market and academic research and running a psychology journal. She had experimented with DIY upholstery projects from a book, but started regular classes at Badger Upholstery to learn how to do it properly. This has led to her joining Hamilton and Hodson as an apprentice in 2021.
Upholstery combines loads of my favourite things. Stripping back a chair is like archaeology; peeling back the layers of history and uncovering the craftsmanship of a fellow upholsterer from decades ago. Building it back up is like creative DIY without power tools, carefully building up layers by hand using age-old methods. Finishing it off involves design and dressmaking skills with real attention to detail – and it’s all recycling and saving things from landfill. I’m amazed how a crude-looking frame can be transformed into a high-end piece of furniture, with years of new life, using just fabrics, stuffing and elbow grease! Working here is brilliant hands-on experience and I’m learning loads from Nicky and Erica.”