Emily Henderson’s Vintage Chaise Gets a Moody Floral Makeover

Emily Henderson Vintage Chaise
Courtesy of Emily Henderson

What’s old is new again.

It may seem like superstar interior designer Emily Henderson has it all figured out, but even she occasionally struggles to achieve the perfect room. That was the case with the living room in her former Tudor-style Los Angeles home, which she completed by trial and error. “I must have restyled the space five times before I felt it was right,” she remembers. The room’s long shape and lack of a natural focal point posed serious challenges, as did Emily’s desire to honor the house’s history while incorporating contemporary elements. In the end, she decided on an “eccentric English granny” look that combines pieces from a wide range of eras. The showstopper? A vintage chaise that Buildlane restored and reupholstered in a dramatic floral velvet. Here’s how the eye-catching piece came together.

Emily Henderson Vintage Chaise in Living room
Courtesy of Emily Henderson

The Brief: “I fell in love with this vintage chaise from Jayson Home when we first moved in. After deciding to go bolder in the eccentric English granny style (as I fondly call it), I wanted to get it reupholstered in a rich floral fabric.”

Why Custom Refurbishment: “I LOVE vintage. It brings, in my opinion, a necessary soulfulness to a room. Then I fell for this House of Hackney textile. It’s bold but not too loud, and traditional-looking yet modern. So it was perfect.”

The Design Process: “I love going on Pinterest, looking at design magazines, and flipping through books. That’s really where I was inspired to go for an eccentric English granny look. When I saw that fabric, I knew it was perfect for the chaise.”

Favorite Detail: “That’s so tough! The chaise really is such a special piece to me. It adds in that design secret sauce that really makes the space unique.”

Emily Henderson Vintage Chaise
Courtesy of Emily Henderson

Initial Reaction: “I was so happy with how it turned out. I finally got the room right just in time to actually put the home on the market because my husband and I decided we wanted to move back to Portland where I’m from.”

Mixed With: “I love the gallery wall behind it so much. It’s full of neutral, more modern pieces that perfectly balance out the chaise. The vintage floor lamp also works so well with it because they have similar features. The base of the lamp is traditional, like the shape of the chaise, and the black shade modernizes it in a cool moody way, like the chaise’s fabric. Lastly, I love how the piece of art over the fireplace picks up on the colors in the chaise’s fabric but in a really quiet way. You don’t even realize it—it just makes your eyes happy.”

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