One of my most recent projects has been doing all the upholstery and trim on this 1957 Mercedes 220S coupe restored by Rudi and Company.
I did purchase seat covers, headliner and a carpet kits for this job but made everything else myself.
I started by installing all the headliner. I made new Windlace trim strips for around the doors in woolcloth and leather sewn over rubber tubing. I also installed all the lower dash leather and thin padding. The leather in these areas was hand skived to be paper thin around areas that chrome or wood trim would later be fit...
The next step was to make and trim all the new interior panels. I cut all new panels out of black waterproof board and then patterned, sewed and trimmed new leather covers with foam following the originals exactly.
Here's the original door panels and rear quarter panels coming apart to show all the various components I had to reproduce...
Next I installed all the interior carpets with underfelt installed under the tunnel and main mats as original
With the carpets installed I could fit the finished door and rear quarter panels in the car with the refinished wood trim and chrome hardware to finish them all off...
Some of the details I had to reproduce were these unique leather door pull handles.
The inner structure is cut from thick belt leather that's wrapped with thin hand skived pieces of red leather and then sewn. Then the handle is then folded into shape and riveted together with some more leather strips braided around the top to finish and hide the rivets.
The rear bench seats were stripped, frames cleaned and painted and then re-trimmed with new foam and new covers...
Sun visors were made as original with new boards covered in skived leather..
The front seats as always were a big job. I stripped the originals, cleaned and painted the frames. Installed new hessian in the bottoms, built up new foam, installed the new covers and back panels with many hours of hand stitching to finish them off - as original.
To finish things off the seats were all installed. Here's some before and after pics of the finished interior...
This car is another fine example of the high level of craftsmanship that used to be practiced on these classic Mercedes back in the day. The hand stitching, hand skiving of the leather, even braiding details seldom still seen these days - I thoroughly enjoy the artistry involved in these jobs.
Until next time -
Classic auto enthusiast, upholsterer, coach trimmer, and fine scale modeler.