Every lot at Hayloft has both a history and a future. This series shares stories of the tables, chairs, drawings, paintings, ceramics, sculptures, and more--both already purchased and yet to be found--that might click with you, and inspire a little change.

Buying furniture or art can feel like a daunting task, but items that are chic, time-tested and long-lasting need not be out of reach. Hayloft offers items that've been loved by others, and it's exciting to make new connections with objects that carry their own histories. The challenge is finding those puzzle pieces that complete your wall, or your floor, or express your personal style. You might pick up a chair because it matches a side table you already own, but you might be drawn to another chair that doesn’t look like anything you have. Often, the purchases I treasure most aren't the things I expected to want.

I bought a little side chair came from a Hayloft tag sale. It’s got unusual caning; the weave pattern is called "radio mesh," which fits the curious, computer monitor-like pitch of the back. It used to have a black, Naugahyde cushion, very much of a different time and place. I loved the process of reupholstering it, even though the variety of choices seemed overwhelming at first. I found the fabric every day for two weeks, until finally settling on a wide, brick-and-tan plaid dotted with tiny purple knots. It’s perfect…and if I ever want to change it up, I can do it all over again. (Heres a link from HGTV about how to easily reupholster your chair).

Naugahyde is brand of manufactured leather the way Lucite is a trade name for acrylic. But the words Naugahyde and Lucite recall a more specific time and use than pleather or acrylic. While Lucite conjures chunky, kaleidoscopic jewelry and accessories of the 1930s, Naugahyde was right at home in the American, mid-century living room. 

FUN FACT: The Nauga is the rascally creature developed in the late 1960s by George Lois, the towering 20th-century art director and designer. All those sofas and ottomans are made from the Nauga’s smooth, durable, maybe-not-all-natural hide.

Wicker is a technique or style, not a material; wicker chairs aren't made from "wicker." Instead, thin, flexible strips of rattan, cane, bamboo, or seagrass--or even synthetic materials, like vinyl--are woven into special patterns to create wicker furniture. It's not just wrapped, white-painted patio sets. I love the look of wicker mirror frames and have long-wanted a small, summery wicker purse. Wicker baskets and bowls make for natural, airy decor, and lightweight wicker furniture is easy to move from room to room, perfect for entertaining--or just rearranging--on the fly.

Nauga Monster ad by Source, fair use,