What a Guy!

  • by Laura Hewitt

When we got our hands on a Guy Rogers sofa that had clearly seen better days, we set to work bringing it back to life. We thought we would share it's story with you...

Tell us about it, stud.

While it sounds like it could be an American company, Guy Rogers was in fact a British company based in Liverpool. They wanted to produce romantic visions of wealth and style for a post-war Britain and as such named its furniture series after aspirational destinations in the USA such as Manhattan, Beverley Hills, New Yorker, Santa Fe. 

Our particular sofa was part of their Manhattan range, designed in 1962 by designers George Fejer and Eric Phamphilon, and sold at the time in the prestigious Heals, London.

The Manhattan series is known for its classic modernist designs. It has clear Scandinavian aesthetic influences but with a certain mid-century American sense of style and character.

From zero to hero

Our Guy Rogers sofa found its way to us in a very sorry state. Beaten, downtrodden and not looking in any way like the sleek, stylish sofa it has once been.  

Even though we hadn’t undertaken a full re-upholstery project before at Habiib HQ, we could see the potential in this former beauty and decided we had to restore it back to glory.

We started by stripping the sofa of its smelly old fabric to get a good look at its naked frame. Thankfully the strapping was in excellent condition and didn’t need replacing. The Afromosia frame was cleaned and the thirsty timber fed with oil and wax to give it back its healthy glow.

We knew immediately what kind of fabric we wanted – a light blue tweed to complement the rich tones of the frame and produce a calm, minimalist aesthetic. Once new foam cushions were cut we sent it off to our local professional upholsterer along with the chosen fabric and patiently awaited a phonecall to tell us it was ready!

We couldn’t be happier with the end result. We feel that this mid-century muse has been restored to its former self. We wanted to stay true to the original ethos behind the range, minimalist clean lines with a hint of laid back luxury which manages to be effortlessly cool.

The beauty with this sofa is that it’s so versatile. We think it looks great with a sheepskin throw and piles of pillows. The vibrant orange and blue we have chosen here really work well with the more muted tones of the sofa. But if Scandinavian minimalism is more your style, you can also pare it back and let the sofa speak for itself.

We hope you love it as much as we do.

To purchase the sofa or to find out more, head over to our online shop. Or if you have any thoughts on the makeover, we would love to hear from you!

Watch this space

We have a matching Guy Rogers Manhattan Sofa Bed that we intend to reupholster in a complimentary style. If you are interested in the sofa bed and would like it to be custom reupholstered, get in touch


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  • Hi there, I have just got a manhattan day bed in very bad condition so needs a lot of restoring. Please could you tell me how you cleaned the wood and what oil you used ? Can’t wait to get it looking like yours. I also need a few mechanical moving parts any idea where I could track these down

    Ohana Banerjee on
  • Do you ever get Santa Fe guy Rodgers sofas

    Mrs Donetta M Green on
  • Can you please inform me if you ever get Guy Rogers Santa Fea sofas ..

    Mrs Donetta M Green on
  • Hi

    I have inherited a Manhatten day bed. It is in great condition. I would like to get it upholstered/restored. But I don’t want to get rid of the Harris Tweed cover. I had no idea what it was when I uncovered it (it was discovered under a pile of clothes and bric-a-brac in a bedroom). I gasped in delight when I took off the cushion to discover it turned into a flat bed. I have no idea what it is worth. We have discovered a lot of mid-century furniture in the process of clearing. I live in SW165LU London. Could you recommend any restorers who come in contact with this type of item on a regular basis?

    Mary on
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  • Hi all
    I worked at Guy Rodgers as an apprentice Upholsterer
    Also My Father Jack Duffy (RIP)
    My Brothers Kevin and Paul Duffy(RIP)
    And my sister Kathleen Duffy.
    The factory is still there split into smaller industrial units.
    Great memories of a quality British Furniture manufacturer.
    Shaun Duffy

    Shaun Duffy on

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