Tod lived in Sumter before we got married, and I lived in Charleston. Two homes meant two sofas, of course, although I'd actually say I had a couch--a slightly oversized, cushion-filled thing--while Tod had a sofa--a formal, camel-backed, mint green thing, an old-fashioned item with good bones and a good history. While my squishy couch came from a fancy furniture store--bought brand new in the nineties for a "bonus" room--Tod's sofa came from his grandparents, two special people I very much wish I'd had the chance to meet. Tod's dad remembers the sofa from when he was a kid, so like I said, there's some history there (no offense, Ted).
As much as I wasn't a fan of the mint green fabric on Tod's sofa, I also wasn't a fan of the green chenille that covered my couch, so most of the time it wore a khaki or denim Pottery Barn slip cover (one of which I picked up at Goodwill for a whopping $6.99). When the dogs came along, the slip covers made even more sense because it's a heck of a lot easier to throw a slip cover in the washing machine than it is to spot treat upholstery.
Tod's sofa was quite comfortable, and it always was my favorite place to sit in his house, but when it came time to combine our households, the thought never crossed my mind to get rid of my couch and replace it with his sofa. I was planning a wedding, so I guess I just wasn't thinking clearly.
By the way, in this picture, I'm pretty sure I was supposed to be "helping" Tod while he changed the front stoop light fixture. I'm such a good helper. (At least the dogs think so.)
Okay, so back to the combining of households. When it came time to put Tod's place on the market, the little sofa that could was perfect for "staging" his place. Yes, I just used that verb.
The staging worked, Tod's place sold, and it was time to say goodbye to 209-B. Only problem was, the sofa had nowhere to go. Like I said, I never had the thought to bring it to Charleston (silly me); plus, it definitely was not a yard sale item; and in the end, I guess we just kept hoping it might find its way into the hands of another family member or friend. When family members and friends didn't work out, the next best place to turn was the church. And so off to Sunday school the little mint green sofa went. (Translation: Tod's family donated it to their church.)
And now we've reached the really good, Indian-giving part of the story. Because about two or three weeks after the little mint green sofa went to Sunday school, I had a sleepless night. Why? Because all I could think about was how I wanted that little mint green sofa back. Bad. (I admit it: sometimes the adverb form of the word, or the -ly, just doesn't get the job done.) I had big plans for that little green sofa, plans that involved re-doing lots of things in our living room. (Yay!)
Tod made me sleep on it. I made him call his parents first thing the next day. Why couldn't I have had this sleepless night two or three weeks sooner? (That's what everyone was thinking, especially Tod's parents.) I guess that just would have been too easy.
Now, after donating something, you just can't take it back without replacing your donation, so once we pleaded our way back into the arms of that little mint green sofa, we knew we needed to make it right.
And so we rented a van (that makes it sound so simple; it was not), loaded up my green chenille couch (which was in excellent shape since it had been slip covered for seven years), and headed to Sumter on a Sunday afternoon to get back our baby.
Dogs like adventures, too, so of course they joined us for the big switch.
We headed to Sumter, left Old Chenille in the Sunday school room, and headed back to Charleston with our mint green baby, which I'm pretty sure the dogs instantly recognized.
Oh yeah, we also headed back with Tod's grill; his parents had been storing it for us. Rental vans are so fun.
Once we'd moved Old Camel in, and once I'd found some great new fabric for him at the mill, it wasn't long before I shipped him off to the reupholstery shop. (I'm not a big facebooker, but it sure does come in handy when you need to ask for recommendations. I asked whether anyone knew of a good, local reupholstery person, and I immediately found my man: William Moultrie.)
Ta da! Check you later, three-cushioned, mint green sofa. Hello, bench-seated, take-charge, red sofa. We love you.
This concludes part 1 of my story. Check back later for part 2.