What makes your feather so much better?

We are very proud of our feather seat and back cushions; we don’t skimp on our feathers!  Most importantly our feathers are white waterfowl, not grey feathers that have been sterilized and are hypo-allergenic,  Our feathers don't smell and they are Canadian (not imported).  

There are 2 main options when choosing a feather cushion.  We provide a feather blend back that consists of 60% waterfowl feather and 40% blown Dacron.  The Dacron gives a little bit more body to the cushion but the high percentage of feather is important because it provides the comfort. 

The second option is our down back, we use the highest percentage of down in our cushions which is 20%, and 80% waterfowl feather.  

We use heavy cotton ticking for our feather seats and backs and all of our seats and backs are baffled to further secure the feather.

I don’t want to fuss with cushions and have a rumpled sofa, what should I do?

1.  Fabric (please see notes under “I am worried that my seat cushions will wrinkle…” is the most important determinant of fabric movement.  If you have a fabric that has a pile on the wrong side then it is important to have this fabric backed to prevent the seat and back cushions from walking.   If your fabric has stretch or movement to it then you will have a rumpled sofa, so choose a fabric that is taut like a structured velvet or mohair..

2. Size of the seat and back cushions is an important determinant on the movement of the piece.  The larger the seat and back the more movement you will have.  We are happy to do smaller seat and back cushions to provide you with a tighter more streamlined piece, just ask and we will accommodate.

3. Look at our tight back options so that you only have the seat cushion to work with, we also provide seat clips with our tight back options

How do I care for my feather seat and back cushions?

Back cushions: You must rework your back cushions on a regular basis; the movement is what provides the comfort. Our back cushions are channeled, so the feather is restricted to its channel however the size of cushion, the type of fabric and the level of care will also affect the degree to which the cushion will move.  IE: a stretchy fabric (ie: like a chenille)  will allow for significant movement.

Seat cushions:  In the case of our feather or down wrap seat cushion it is a duvet CHANELLED wrap of feather or down around a foam core.  It is the foam core that stabilizes the seat and as such the seat will not move as much as the back cushion.  You need to rotate your cushions and depending on the size of the seat cushion, the type of fabric and the stretchiness of the fabric, you need to turn your seats and unzip the outer casing to realign.

Most importantly you purchased a quality product that is meant to be used and enjoyed, so enjoy and know that feathers are natural and are meant to age and change with time.


Why are your decks upholstered?

Simple, we just don’t want to cut ANY corners.  Our pieces are detailed from top to bottom.

What is the difference between Canadian made and off-shore made?

There are many differences, but we believe that the most important differences are:

   1.  Gresham House can customize to suit your needs.   You and your designer choose the fabric, the depth, the length and the style that work best for YOU in your home.

   2.  We are bench made; we are not on an assembly line.  One person hand cuts and one person upholsters the entire piece of furniture to ensure consistency and a superbly finished product.

   3. We minimize the carbon footprint by sourcing locally and having full control over every aspect of our furniture.

How eco friendly is your furniture?

   1. Our furniture is timeless and built to last.  To Gresham House eco friendly means buying responsibly, buying well made timeless pieces that will not end up in a land fill.  We use Canadian hardwood and for every tree that is used, 2 new trees are planted.

   2. Soy based high density foam.  We use a soy based foam that has a 2.8lb density, meaning it is good quality and will last. 

   3. We use real cotton felt on our arms and backs.

   4. Our frames are made locally, our furniture is manufactured in one facility in Mississauga thereby reducing our carbon footprint.


How do you go the extra mile when building your furniture?

   We put a lot of effort into each piece of furniture, here is the value that you don’t see and this is why it is important.

   Our Frames Kiln dried Canadian hardwood, dowelled, screwed and glued, corner blocked and crossbraced.  5/8” thick hardwood.  The easy test is pick up one side of the frame and lift it, it is a solid piece of furniture, there is no torquing or movement and it is heavy, this means it will last a lifetime

   Our Springs We use heavy gauge steel, 8 gauge sinuous springs no more than 4” apart.  Each spring is secure with  3 x cross wires of flexible steel wire to prevent slippage, our springs are built to last.

   Our Arms First of all the whole piece of furniture is done by the same person, our arms have a layer of cotton felt (so that you don’t feel the wood) and then a layer of teraline to provide a smooth arm.  Do the arm test, feel the outside of the arm, our arms are fully padded and don’t feel empty, built to last.

   Our Backs (Frame) First of all our backs are webbed not just horizontally but criss-crossed, and on top of that we have a layer of sheeting, nothing is getting through our backs.  For extra durability and softness, our upholsterer then applies a layer of foam.   We ask all of our customer to feel the outside back and inside back of our frame, it does not feel hollow that is because we build it to provide lasting comfort and support.


I am worried that my seat cushions will wrinkle. How can I prevent this?

   There are a few things to consider when you have a rumpled seat cushion. 

   1.  Fabric. This is probably the most important determinant for a wrinkly seat cushion. If your fabric has a stretch to it, then it will stretch and wrinkle and move on your seat cushion. If your fabric is chenille and has a pile on the back side it will catch on the fill inside and “walk” and distort the cushion (in this case we recommend that you back the fabric to prevent it from walking). When choosing a fabric keep in mind the desired look and feel, don’t choose a stretchy fabric when your client wants a structured look and sit and does not want to fuss with their cushions. Designers can call Gresham House and we can give you feedback on the fabric in question if there are any doubts.

2. Fill.  First of all we invest a lot in our foam and are proud of it.  We use the best foam on the market and the best Dacron wrap on the market.  Your seat cushion is not meant to be as stiff as a brick; we go to great lengths to provide a perfectly crowned seat cushion.  Your seat cushion will inherently move but by turning your seat cushions and every once in a while opening the zipper and realigning the casing with the core your seat cushion will last a lifetime of sitting.  The inner foam core that provides the support will never flatten however the thick duvet wrap of Dacron that provides the loft and the softness also allows for the cushion to move and breathe. 

   3.  Feather, Down or Cloud Fill.  We use the best soy based foam and add a duvet wrap of 100% waterfowl feathers, or down, or Cloud (microgel) fill.  The foam core provides the stability for the seat cushion and the feather/down/cloud wrap allows for a soft crowned effect to provide the most luxurious sit.   These cushions will move and when paired with a soft pliable fabric the more movement you will have in the seat.  I always like to tell people how I personally love the down back and the down wrapped seat option, nothing says luxury more than this and in my mind the sit is beyond heaven.  My mother on the other hand loves the structured look and feel of our standard seat core and back core.  My point is that at the end of the day there is no right or wrong answer.  It is a personal choice and that is the point, we have the options and the client is free to choose the best option for them…that is the real beauty of Gresham House.

4.  Size of the Cushion:  It is quite logical, the larger the cushion the more movement and softness it will provide.  If you want a more structured sit, choose smaller seat and back cushions, choose a more structured fabric, and choose our standard seat and back cushion fill.  On the other  hand, if you want a cozy, soft look then choose a larger seat and back cushion, a stretchy, soft fabric and go for the feather, down or cloud fill in the seat and back cushion.

General Info

Why does Gresham House value an interior designer?

Years ago, Max saw the value that an interior designer provided and years later has alongside his daughter built a successful business catering to the interior design trade.  Max started with a successful furniture retail store but over the years witnessed a change in the market.  His customers were looking for the specialized attention that only an interior designer could provide.  From this, Max and Marilyn created a manufacturing business dedicated to providing the interior designer with custom upholstered furniture.  Through the years Max and Marilyn have believed that the marriage of good design and customized well built furniture will lead to a satisfied and happy client.  The client is able to first design their OWN piece of furniture through the guidance of their designer and then have it built by furniture experts - Gresham House.

Where is Gresham House Based?

Gresham House factory and showroom is located in Mississauga, Ontario (3250 Ridgeway Dr., Unit #6).  Our trade only showroom is open Monday to Friday 9am to 4pm.  We also have 2 satellite trade only showrooms in Calgary, Alberta at Designers Choice Resource Centre DCRC (www.designerschoicerc.com) .

I am a certified interior designer or decorator, how do I set up an account?

Please complete this form and send it to us and we will be happy to establish an account.

How did Gresham House get its name?

Gresham House is the house in the City of London Freeman school that Max attended as a young boy in London, England.    Marilyn always heard of Max’s time at Gresham House and wanted to honor father and name the company after something that was an important part of his life.

How can I buy Gresham House furniture?

You may purchase Gresham House furniture through a certified interior designer or decorator.  Gresham House does not sell direct to the public.

Can I change my order?

Our furniture is made to your specifications, therefore once an order is confirmed, we can not change an order.


Why do you cut your welts on the bias?

First of all a bias welt adds more strength to the cushion, we don’t sew the cushions once, we sew our cushions 3 times with a bias welt.   The bias welt also lies better on the cushion, the corners are more rounded and softer providing a superior custom detail.

What is Max’s patented key test?

We have our own wyzenbeek test and it is called”Max’s patented key test”.  It is always good to refer to the industry standard Martindale or Wyzenbeek test to determine the durability of fabrics, but we also like to encourage our clients to take control and  subject their fabric of choice to their own test, after all they are the ones who will be living with it!.  For the last 50 years Max has asked clients to pull out their keys and scratch the fabric and see what happens – you will quickly see for yourself the fabrics that when paired with our furniture will last the test of time!

What is a Wyzenbeek test?

It is an abrasion test that is used to measure the durability of a particular fabric.  The warp and weft threads are abraded to simulate wear and tear.  The industry looks to these tests as a guideline to the durability of a fabric.  Generally, if the fabric passes a 30,000 rub count it is suitable for heavy usage.  However a high rub count does not mean that you don’t have to regularly clean and maintain your fabric in order to keep.  More importantly fabrics are not warranted, so we have developed our own test, we like to call it “Max’s patented key test”….

We want a really durable fabric. What should we be looking at?

   A fabric that works for one client, may not work for the next client.   It is up to you and your designer to determine the best fabric for each specific application.  Gresham House is happy to review your fabric choice and let you know how it will upholster and age with the specified piece of furniture.

Look at the "Wyzenbeek Test" or "Rub Count" of the chosen fabric.  Look at the weight and structure of the fabric.  The "weightier" a fabric, the more it will  hide, the more structured the fabric the more it will hold the body, hold the cushions.  On the other hand, if the fabric has stretch and movement, it will also stretch and move providing a softer, more relaxed look and feel on your upholstered piece.


Who takes care of shipping?

The designer/purchaser is responsible for shipping FOB Mississauga.   The designer must specify local delivery or transport on their sales order.  Please contact us to recommend a delivery company.

In Alberta, the designer/purchaser is responsible for shipping FOB Designers Choice Resource Centre, Calgary Alberta.