AMUSF Accredited Upholstery Course / Stages 1, 2 & 3

BOOK NOW: We are now taking applications for our February AMUSF Stage 1 course. Tuesdays and Thursdays for 18 weeks.

At SHOREDITCH DESIGN ROOMS we very much have an open door policy – anyone who is interested in joining our AMUSF upholstery courses are very welcome to come and visit, see our fantastic space, chat to our existing students, meet the tutors and find out all they need to know about the courses we run here. Please come by for a visit!

Please have a read through the info below about our courses and all we offer our students…

Shoreditch Design Rooms AMUSF Accredited Courses:

Since we launched the School in 2013 as an official AMUSF Training Centre, we have achieved a 100% pass rate for all our accredited students with over 60% achieving official ‘distinctions’ from the AMUSF which is the highest accolade given. Every year, the AMUSF has consistently commented on both the quality and originality of the work produced by Shoreditch Design Rooms’ students. It is a record we are immensely proud of and confirms SDR as one of the highest achieving upholstery training centres in the country.

We guarantee a maximum of only 8 students per class allowing an excellent level of one to one attention and tuition – something we feel is vital. This guaranteed small class size compares favourably with most other training centres and universities that offer the AMUSF courses.

We also have close links with Liberty London who’s Head Designer selects our annual Liberty Award winners (exclusive to SDR students) based on the creative use of fabrics on their final pieces. Kvadrat also offer a special design prize exclusively for SDR students.

The direct links we have with so many parts of the furniture and creative industries is a vital part of what we offer. In the last academic year, we have provided exclusive Talks, Presentations and site visits for our students from Liberty London, Kvadrat, Heals, the V&A, Whissler Leather, Eleanor Pritchard fabrics, Bute fabrics, Houles and The London Cloth Company to name few.

Providing our students with experience, knowledge and expertise on one hand whilst encouraging them to think for themselves and be creative on the other is the basis of what we do here at Shoreditch Design Rooms – giving our students the confidence and support in order to go on and seek employment or self-employment within the furniture industry.

The AMUSF Qualification:

This three stage qualification programme brings together both traditional and modern materials and techniques. They involve you completing defined project pieces alongside workshop practice on exercise pieces with the use of various materials and technology.

The programme is all designed to help you develop a greater range of practical skills which will allow you to work on antique as well as mid-century and modern furniture: simple drop-in dining chair seats right through to large traditionally upholstered armchairs.

Upholstery STAGE 1 Qualification :

During this stage you will work on various exercise pieces (provided by us) and projects (box cushion with zip and piping + a bolster end with piping) to help develop your practical skills, gaining knowledge and experience in the techniques and manipulation of a variety of materials and processes.

As you move on to your project pieces: a sprung dining chair and an upholstered, lined box with deep-buttoning, you will get a good understanding of upholstery fabrics and textiles as well as machine sewing skills but we will also encourage you to develop personal, creative ideas around these first project pieces.

Stage 1 will also include a dedicated Sewing Module to introduce you to detailed elements of sewing including making and completing a scatter cushion.

Upholstery STAGE 2 Qualification :
Stage 2 chair

At Stage 2 you will further develop the modern and traditional skills learned at Stage 1, which will include various set projects: a T-shaped cushion with piping and zips and an independent sprung edge.

The project pieces at Stage 2 include a traditionally upholstered sprung armless chair and a post 1950s armchair using modern materials and techniques. All the time you will be encouraged to develop creative ideas and solutions for your project pieces as well as also benefiting hugely from learning within a group where you will be alongside others who may be working on different styles of chairs, hence broadening your knowledge base.

The research project: History of 20th Century Furniture will also give you a better understanding of the styles, periods and designers of the types of furniture that you may be faced with in the future.

At Stage 2 we aim to embed your knowledge allowing you to problem solve by giving you the skills and information required to adapt to different pieces of furniture.

Upholstery STAGE 3 Qualification & Diploma :
Shoreditch Design Rooms 074

As well as developing all these skills further, you will acquire an understanding of the history of upholstered furniture and begin to be able to read the various requirements of the hundreds of different styles of chair.  This will include being able to adapt your skills to different forms of both traditional furniture as well as to more modern, curved and shaped pieces.

A wide range different skills and techniques will be taught and practiced as well as important, practical knowledge and advice required to take upholstery forward as a possible career choice: estimating and costing materials and labour, legal and safety requirements, insurance, PR and marketing and other requirements around self-employment.

At SDR, our working upholstery studio and large variety of clients, enable us to open up unique work experience and apprenticeship opportunities for our students , as well as hugely beneficial, general access to many areas of the design industries.

Course Structure

These qualification courses can be studied in a few different formats:

Stage 1 AMUSF qualification (216 hours) studied one-day per week over 36 weeks of the first academic year – Sept 2020 til July 2021


Stage 1 AMUSF qualification (216 hours) studied two days per week over 18 weeks – Feb 2020 til July 2020


We can also offer the Stage 1 qualification (216 hours) as an evening class, one-evening per week, over two academic years – Sept 2020 til July 2022

For those students who already have a Stage 1 or Stage 2 qualification we will be teaching the Stage 2 qualification (216 hours) and the Stage 3 qualification (216 hours), one day per week over 36 weeks starting in Sept 2020.

Please get in CONTACT for all further details, to register your interest and to receive an Application Form…or if you’d just like to come by for a visit. All welcome!

Course Start Dates:

First full week of February 2020 (two days per week on Tuesdays and Thursdays)

First week of September 2020

Get in touch for more information including course fees. All courses are based around the academic year: September to July with half-term and holidays in line with most schools.

Places on the Stage 1,2 & 3 courses are limited.


“The help and direction from Louise and the team gave me the confidence to change my career and I feel like I’ve had the best start possible. The high standards of the teachers and the great facilities and materials all provide great foundations to learn and work from. The benefit of a commercial upholstery workshop being on site means that we can see real projects for clients from start to finish being produced with great skill. I’ve made lots of good friends, eaten far too many biscuits and hugely enjoyed the last couple of years with SDR!“ Kate Cohen (AMUSF Stage 2 & 3 2015/16)

“Just being in the studio surrounded by fabrics, furniture and people has taught me an amazing amount in such a short amount of time. I learned from the best!” Siara (AMUSF Stage 3, 2015)





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