- >Albright's Supply Presents: Upholstery Diamonds
Deonte Smith of Team G-Body (Glen Burnie, MD)
What does being an upholsterer mean to you?
Being an upholsterer is an expression of art. We get to be mentally and physically creative while incorporating it into something we love – automobiles!
How did you get started in upholstery?
I started out doing personal projects - often working on my personal vehicles before events with a very limited budget and a short deadline. I had to learn quickly and try my best to not screw things up or I would lose progress and money. The more experience I gained, the more I would venture into more interior related projects. I noticed the high demand to provide services for others and transitioned what once was a personal hobby into a valuable addition to my business.
What types of upholstery do you do?
Custom automobile interior fabrication, mainly product based. I manufacture custom interior parts for vehicles, specializing in 1978-1988 G platform GM vehicles (also known as the G-Body).
How long have you been upholstering?
What is your biggest consumer demand?
Center Consoles, most G-body vehicles have similar fitment and interchangeable parts. You can build one template for multiple vehicles within that platform resulting in saving production time, material, expenses. I set an affordable price so what may be one of the expensive parts is now affordable with a great start to a custom interior build.
What is your favorite upholstery project you've done?
I’ll always consider my personal projects as a favorite. I have the free range to be creative as I want and the ability to challenge myself if I feel like enhancing my skills. I also have plenty of room for error.
What is the strangest item you've found in a restoration?
Have you noticed any up and coming trends?
I’m noticing interiors are starting to be designed more subtly again, close to factory with a modern touch.
What changes would benefit the upholstery industry?
More individuals learning the trade/skill!
Have you ever been featured on television, online, or in another publication?
Mainly social platforms such as YouTube features and Instagram write ups. I did have an opportunity to have my car featured in a parts catalog!
Some answers have been edited for clarity.