MY STORY

Hello, I’m Michelle.

In 2011 I was made redundant from a job I thought I’d loved for 25 years. I was devastated but also strangely excited. Could this be an opportunity to make some long overdue changes in my professional life and realise a longheld dream of being self employed?

Around this time a friend invited me to a fortune telling night. Now, I’m generally sceptical about these things, but as I was at a bit of a crossroads I thought I’d go along and see what the spirits had in store for me. The fortune teller told me she saw me surrounded by pin cushions, needles and chairs. Crikey!…am I going to be an upholstress?

Over the next few days the idea started to sink in….and feel right….really right. In fact, it felt amazing! I could get out of the rat race. I could be self employed. Could I be an upholsterer / upholstress / upholdstress??? (Still haven’t decided which I am yet!)

I researched courses and found one accredited by the Association of Master Upholsterers and Soft Furnishers run by J A Milton in Ellesmere in Shropshire, about an hour away. The AMUSF has recognised that there are not enough new upholsterers coming through the ranks with traditional skills. They have devised a set of qualifications designed to ensure the traditional methods are passed onto a new generation who can continue to rebuild and re-cover antique furniture to traditional standards. This appealed to my love of history so I took the plunge and started two weeks later. The first time I picked up a tack hammer I knew…this is the job for me!

Courses completed, I launched North Wales Upholstery.  Very quickly after I started teaching and North Wales Upholstery School was born.  The school has grown from strength to strength and now offers various courses at our premises on Denbigh Industrial Estate.

In the meantime I have developed a line of sheepskin covered furniture and home accessories call Baa Stool which operates from the same premises and keeps me very busy.  I no longer teach in the school but work with Master Upholsterer Philip Blackburn who has over 35 years experience in the industry and helps our students complete their projects to the highest quality.

This Is What Our Clients Say
Thank you so much for a thoroughly enjoyable day on Saturday.  You are a fantastic teacher and I really want to continue learning more upholstery skills.I absolutely love my footstool as do Alun and Cathryn who keep pinching it!!!Please let me know once you've decided on future workshops you will be running as I'd love to come if I can.Thanks again for everything.
Thank you so much for a thoroughly enjoyable day on Saturday.  You are a fantastic teacher and I really want to continue learning more upholstery skills.
Quick email to let you know how thrilled I am with the seats -I keep going into the dining room to look at them! - Mary

Thanks so much for all the time and guidance you were able to give on the course, I thoroughly enjoyed it! Also thank you for being so flexible, it was your flexibility that actually enabled me to do the course!

I'd give more than five stars if I could! As someone who knows nothing about upholstery - Michelle was able to advise every step of the way. The end product - my Melin Tregwynt chair exceeded all my expectations - the husband has now claimed it as his own!
Gemma Neale
So after only 2 sessions of upholstery classes , I think I may be hooked!  I have already been scouring eBay to see what potential other projects I can get my hands on.  Really enjoying the classes so far thanks!