Nissan 370Z Nismo edition

The Nismo edition of Nissan's 370Z is the premier model, but the interior is honestly beyond dull! So when I was asked to liven things up a little...

The seats, doorcards, kneepads etc have all been trimmed in a combination of red and black leather and diamond quilted charcoal grey Alcantara, giving the cockpit an air of elegance and sophistication. The instrument binnacle, dashboard gauge covers and sun visors have all been trimmed in Alcantara and picked out with a red topstitch.

All in all, this is much more the sort of finish that this car should've had from the factory!

Nissan 370Z Nismo trimmed in leather and diamond quilted Alcantara. Nissan 370Z Nismo trimmed in leather and diamond quilted Alcantara. Nissan 370Z Nismo trimmed in leather and diamond quilted Alcantara. Nissan 370Z Nismo trimmed in leather and diamond quilted Alcantara. Nissan 370Z Nismo trimmed in leather and diamond quilted Alcantara. Nissan 370Z Nismo trimmed in leather and diamond quilted Alcantara. Nissan 370Z Nismo trimmed in leather and diamond quilted Alcantara. Nissan 370Z Nismo trimmed in leather and diamond quilted Alcantara. Nissan 370Z Nismo trimmed in leather and diamond quilted Alcantara.

Mercedes-Benz SL500

This SL500 came in for a partial retrim due to some quite serious wear which, of course, meant that the correct leather hide had to be used.

So Mercedes Benz Orion Grau Nappa hide was sourced and the front seats and central armrest were stripped and retrimmed, finished with a matching topstitch. The steering wheel was a couple of shades darker and,when everything was completed and refitted, this classic droptop once again looked how it was meant to.

Perfect for enjoying some sunshine!

Mercedes-Benz SL500 retrimmed in Orion Grau Nappa leather. Mercedes-Benz SL500 retrimmed in Orion Grau Nappa leather. Mercedes-Benz SL500 retrimmed in Orion Grau Nappa leather. Mercedes-Benz SL500 retrimmed in Orion Grau Nappa leather.

Automotive office and workshop furniture

I can spend a fair amount of time sat down during my working day, either at the sewing machine or in the office, so it made sense to me to be as comfortable as possible whilst doing so. And, being a centre for vehicle upholstery, why not make things out of car seats?

The first thing was the red leather Recaro seat. I actually built this as a demo piece out of spare parts I had, but I decided to make it into an office chair rather than it simply sitting around for people to look at. It is, as you'd expect, extremely comfortable!

I was then given a pair of rear seats from a Mk1 Audi TT. A bespoke steel frame was built and powdercoated in black, then the retrimmed seats were mounted and voila: a couch for people to sit on. Both of these items are quite a talking point when anyone visits the workshop.

Finally, my sewing chair. Having once again amassed enough spare parts to build multiple recaro seats from, I decided to make a comfortable seat for my sewing room. This one has been trimmed in a light grey leather with blue topstitching, and the centres are wearing some VW Golf cloth that I had leftover from a previous job.

Industrial automotive furniture... it's the future, I reckon....

Recaro and Audi seats upcycled into office furniture. Recaro and Audi seats upcycled into office furniture. Recaro and Audi seats upcycled into office furniture. Recaro and Audi seats upcycled into office furniture. Recaro and Audi seats upcycled into office furniture. Recaro and Audi seats upcycled into office furniture. Recaro and Audi seats upcycled into office furniture. Recaro and Audi seats upcycled into office furniture. Recaro and Audi seats upcycled into office furniture. Recaro and Audi seats upcycled into office furniture. Recaro and Audi seats upcycled into office furniture. Recaro and Audi seats upcycled into office furniture. Recaro and Audi seats upcycled into office furniture. Recaro and Audi seats upcycled into office furniture. Recaro and Audi seats upcycled into office furniture.     

BMW Z4 Roadster E85 - V1.0

This is my new toy. Since the sad demise of my 300ZX in 2019, there was a little 2 seater void in my life... I'd already lived with the running costs of a classic twin turbo monster, so I thought I'd try something a little more modern and a little less shouty!

And this is it: a 3.0 SE Z4. Spec'd up to the hilt and quite a nippy little thing, it was pretty much what I was looking for. Aside from the interior, that is... the original black leather was worn and generally tired, so I decided to replace it with a nice new red leather one courtesy of Andrew Muirhead Sateen Ruby hide. The seats, doorcard inserts, kneepads, gear gaiter and handbrake gaiter have all been remade and finished with a silver grey topstitch, in much the same design as the factory trim was finished, but just different enough for people to have to look again. And with the addition of some bespoke armrests for the doorcards, it's a much nicer and much more comfortable place to be now.

This, however, is its first iteration. I'll be replacing the seats with a pair of M Sport ones (memory electric and heated, as these are) and no doubt remodelling the whole thing at the same time. V2.0, if you like!

BMW E85 Z4 Roadster retrimmed in Andrew Muirhead Ruby leather. BMW E85 Z4 Roadster retrimmed in Andrew Muirhead Ruby leather. BMW E85 Z4 Roadster retrimmed in Andrew Muirhead Ruby leather. BMW E85 Z4 Roadster retrimmed in Andrew Muirhead Ruby leather. BMW E85 Z4 Roadster retrimmed in Andrew Muirhead Ruby leather. BMW E85 Z4 Roadster retrimmed in Andrew Muirhead Ruby leather. BMW E85 Z4 Roadster retrimmed in Andrew Muirhead Ruby leather. BMW E85 Z4 Roadster retrimmed in Andrew Muirhead Ruby leather. BMW E85 Z4 Roadster retrimmed in Andrew Muirhead Ruby leather. BMW E85 Z4 Roadster retrimmed in Andrew Muirhead Ruby leather.

Mercedes-Benz SLK

This SLK came to me in need of some jazzing up, so jazz it up is what we did.

The factory black leather was replaced with new black leather along with silver grey Alcantara centre panels. This was also applied to the inserts on the doorcards - not a job for the faint-hearted! As this model has the folding metal roof, the three piece headliner was stripped out and retrimmed in charcoal grey Alcantara. These details have been extended to items such as the door handles as well, giving a much more luxurious air to the cabin.

All in all, a subtle but effective transformation for this Bahn-stormer.

Mercedes-Benz SLK retrimmed in black leather and Alcantara. Mercedes-Benz SLK retrimmed in black leather and Alcantara. Mercedes-Benz SLK retrimmed in black leather and Alcantara. Mercedes-Benz SLK retrimmed in black leather and Alcantara. Mercedes-Benz SLK retrimmed in black leather and Alcantara. Mercedes-Benz SLK retrimmed in black leather and Alcantara. Mercedes-Benz SLK retrimmed in black leather and Alcantara. Mercedes-Benz SLK retrimmed in black leather and Alcantara. Mercedes-Benz SLK retrimmed in black leather and Alcantara. Mercedes-Benz SLK retrimmed in black leather and Alcantara. Mercedes-Benz SLK retrimmed in black leather and Alcantara. Mercedes-Benz SLK retrimmed in black leather and Alcantara. Mercedes-Benz SLK retrimmed in black leather and Alcantara.

Toyota Alphard camper conversion.

I'd never even heard of a Toyota Alphard before this enquiry landed, but it turns out they're a pretty space-age looking van with a sizeable following here in the UK. This one needed something to bring the seats up to date and, being a camper conversion, the obvious choice would've been to use diamond quilting. But if you want to stand out in a crowd, you have to think and look a little different...

So we opted for a simple 45 degree diagonal pleat instead and I think it was a great choice - the owner agrees with me too. The electric blue thread really pops against the black Nappa leather and that, coupled with the "Alphard" legend embroidered into each headrest, makes this a bit of a head-turner!

Toyota Alphard camper conversion, trimmed in black Nappa leather with diagonal pleat details. Toyota Alphard camper conversion, trimmed in black Nappa leather with diagonal pleat details. Toyota Alphard camper conversion, trimmed in black Nappa leather with diagonal pleat details. Toyota Alphard camper conversion, trimmed in black Nappa leather with diagonal pleat details. Toyota Alphard camper conversion, trimmed in black Nappa leather with diagonal pleat details. Toyota Alphard camper conversion, trimmed in black Nappa leather with diagonal pleat details. Toyota Alphard camper conversion, trimmed in black Nappa leather with diagonal pleat details. Toyota Alphard camper conversion, trimmed in black Nappa leather with diagonal pleat details. Toyota Alphard camper conversion, trimmed in black Nappa leather with diagonal pleat details. Toyota Alphard camper conversion, trimmed in black Nappa leather with diagonal pleat details. Toyota Alphard camper conversion, trimmed in black Nappa leather with diagonal pleat details. Toyota Alphard camper conversion, trimmed in black Nappa leather with diagonal pleat details. Toyota Alphard camper conversion, trimmed in black Nappa leather with diagonal pleat details.
               

Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185

Toyota's Celica GT-Fours are effectively road-going rally cars. The forerunners to such modern day legends as the Subaru Impreza and the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution, if you will. That doesn't mean that they can't be comfortable and downright eye-catching though.

This GT-Four - the ST185 version - was in need of an updated cabin as the factory trim was looking a little dated. So some Crest leather hide and grey Alcantara was employed to bring the car right into the 21st century, finished off with a red topstitch and "GT-Four" embroidery in red as well.

No longer all go and no show, this Celica now has a cabin that's simply a lovely place to be. And who doesn't want that when they're piloting their turbocharged car around?!

Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185 retrimmed in grey leather and grey Alcantara.   Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185 retrimmed in grey leather and grey Alcantara.   Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185 retrimmed in grey leather and grey Alcantara.   Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185 retrimmed in grey leather and grey Alcantara.   Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185 retrimmed in grey leather and grey Alcantara.   Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185 retrimmed in grey leather and grey Alcantara.   Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185 retrimmed in grey leather and grey Alcantara.   Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185 retrimmed in grey leather and grey Alcantara.   Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185 retrimmed in grey leather and grey Alcantara.   Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185 retrimmed in grey leather and grey Alcantara.   Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185 retrimmed in grey leather and grey Alcantara.   Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185 retrimmed in grey leather and grey Alcantara.   Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185 retrimmed in grey leather and grey Alcantara.   Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185 retrimmed in grey leather and grey Alcantara.  Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185 retrimmed in grey leather and grey Alcantara.  Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185 retrimmed in grey leather and grey Alcantara.   Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185 retrimmed in grey leather and grey Alcantara.   Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185 retrimmed in grey leather and grey Alcantara.     

Renault Megane DCi Coupe

It's not all sports cars and modern classics here - sometimes people simply want a really nice daily driver too. Like this Renault Megane DCi Coupe.

The factory interior was an incredibly drab dark grey cloth and it made the cabin a fairly oppresive place to be, to be honest. The solution was to rip it all out and replace it with some high-end Andrew Muirhead Sateen Ruby leather hide and then finish it off with a silver topstitch. The injection-moulded headrests proved to be quite a headache, but nothing that couldn't be successfully overcome.

The result? The dull French interior is now something akin to a BMW or Audi and will undoubtedly be a far nicer place to sit whilst racking up the miles.

Renault Megane Coupe retrimmed with Andrew Muirhead Sateen Ruby leather.   Renault Megane Coupe retrimmed with Andrew Muirhead Sateen Ruby leather.   Renault Megane Coupe retrimmed with Andrew Muirhead Sateen Ruby leather.  Renault Megane Coupe retrimmed with Andrew Muirhead Sateen Ruby leather.  Renault Megane Coupe retrimmed with Andrew Muirhead Sateen Ruby leather.  Renault Megane Coupe retrimmed with Andrew Muirhead Sateen Ruby leather.  Renault Megane Coupe retrimmed with Andrew Muirhead Sateen Ruby leather.  Renault Megane Coupe retrimmed with Andrew Muirhead Sateen Ruby leather.

Ford Escort RS2000 Cabriolet

Whilst this version of Ford's Escort Cabriolet wasn't as big a seller as its forerunners, there was still plenty of bodystyling choices available for it in its day. This particular one is backing its wild looks up with an RS2000 Zetec engine transplant, so it has the go to match the show.

For the cabin, there had already been plenty of painting and hydrodipping taken place - all I had to do was do a spot of colour-matching and a lot of upholstery work! So the seats are now resplendent in some of Crest's finest hides, finished with a white topstitch.

The doorcard and rear quarter inserts are wearing Crest Deep Ultramarine leather, again with a white toptsitch, and finished around the periphary with white piping. The bespoke tonneau cover is the same leather and finished with white binding and topstitch.

The steering wheel is black leather and has been finished with an alternating blue and white Bentley stitch pattern.

As transformations go, this one is right up there with the most dramatic of them but it's all very much in keeping with the spirit of the car as it is now. The owner was somewhat over the moon with the end result and there's nothing more that I can ask for as a trimmer.

Ford Escort RS2000 Cabriolet retrimmed in blue and white leather.   Ford Escort RS2000 Cabriolet retrimmed in blue and white leather.   Ford Escort RS2000 Cabriolet retrimmed in blue and white leather.  Ford Escort RS2000 Cabriolet retrimmed in blue and white leather.  Ford Escort RS2000 Cabriolet retrimmed in blue and white leather.  Ford Escort RS2000 Cabriolet retrimmed in blue and white leather.  Ford Escort RS2000 Cabriolet retrimmed in blue and white leather.  Ford Escort RS2000 Cabriolet retrimmed in blue and white leather.  Ford Escort RS2000 Cabriolet retrimmed in blue and white leather.  Ford Escort RS2000 Cabriolet retrimmed in blue and white leather.  Ford Escort RS2000 Cabriolet retrimmed in blue and white leather.  Ford Escort RS2000 Cabriolet retrimmed in blue and white leather.  Ford Escort RS2000 Cabriolet retrimmed in blue and white leather.  Ford Escort RS2000 Cabriolet retrimmed in blue and white leather.  Ford Escort RS2000 Cabriolet retrimmed in blue and white leather.  Ford Escort RS2000 Cabriolet retrimmed in blue and white leather.  Ford Escort RS2000 Cabriolet retrimmed in blue and white leather.

Skoda Felicia Fun pickup

It's vehicles like this one that make my job great fun (pun fully intended!). Here's a funky little four-seater pickup in which the rear seats fold out into the pickup bed - that's just a cool touch no matter how you look at it!

The original and rather hopeful brief for this Skoda was to source some brand new "frogs and crowns" centre cloth but, sadly, neither myself nor the owner were able to track any down. So I made the very best of a pair of interiors and, to be honest, it's anything but a letdown.

All the original yellow leatherwork has been replaced with new, and finished with a matching topstitch. It's a lot of yellow in an already very yellow car, but it just works. Any other colour simply wouldn't look right, and this simply had to look right.

This is pretty much perfect summer motoring, in my opinion: a warm colour on a head-turning vehicle with more access to the elements than simply rolling the windows down. This is hands down one of my favourite cars I've worked on!

Skoda Felicia Fun pickup retrimmed to factory spec - yellow leather with matching topstitch.   Skoda Felicia Fun pickup retrimmed to factory spec - yellow leather with matching topstitch.   Skoda Felicia Fun pickup retrimmed to factory spec - yellow leather with matching topstitch.  Skoda Felicia Fun pickup retrimmed to factory spec - yellow leather with matching topstitch.  Skoda Felicia Fun pickup retrimmed to factory spec - yellow leather with matching topstitch.  Skoda Felicia Fun pickup retrimmed to factory spec - yellow leather with matching topstitch.  Skoda Felicia Fun pickup retrimmed to factory spec - yellow leather with matching topstitch.  Skoda Felicia Fun pickup retrimmed to factory spec - yellow leather with matching topstitch.  Skoda Felicia Fun pickup retrimmed to factory spec - yellow leather with matching topstitch.  Skoda Felicia Fun pickup retrimmed to factory spec - yellow leather with matching topstitch.  Skoda Felicia Fun pickup retrimmed to factory spec - yellow leather with matching topstitch.  Skoda Felicia Fun pickup retrimmed to factory spec - yellow leather with matching topstitch.