Welcome to S.W. James - Chesterfield Makers

Design Features

Chesterfield sofa terminology

To help understand some of the terminology and lingo used when ordering or customising your S.W. James Chesterfield sofa or wingback chair, we have put together a helpful little dictionary & illustration to help you get to grips with the individual items that make up your finished S.W James.

The anatomy of a Chesterfield and its comfort

the anatomy of a Chesterfield - image 1

Chesterfield Terminology


One of the most laborious techniques when creating a new S.W. James Chesterfield is the elaborate pleating. It can only be painstakingly completed by hand.


Chesterfield Terminology


The deep-buttoning technique is synonymous with the iconic British Chesterfield. Again, this process is only achieved by hand at S.W. James. Each sofa, wing chair and tub chair we make is meticulously deep-buttoned by hand.

the anatomy of a Chesterfield - image 2

Chesterfield Terminology

Piping & Studs

Each stud is individually tacked by hand. More than 1000 studs are used on an average Chesterfield to accentuate and add individual character to the Chesterfield.
Most Chesterfields in our range combine both piping and studs. This is quite rare and a special touch the team like to add.


Chesterfield Terminology

Feet & Casters

We offer three types of feet at S.W. James. These are; Tub feet, which are low and very robust. Legs, which lift a Chesterfield off the ground and offer an alternate finish. Finally, we offer legs with brass castors. You can see this on the No.2 amongst others. We think this combination completes the Chesterfields look in a regal manner.


Chesterfield Terminology


Traditional Chesterfield borders tend to come with double buttoning (See our No.1). They can also come with a single button (See our No.2). Finally, for a more contemporary look, we can offer a simple, plain border (See our No.4). This offers a cleaner more modern feel.

Talk to the team at S.W. James

The S.W. James Team

we’re here to help

We know ordering your own handmade Chesterfield or vintage sofa is a very personal decision and we know you will have questions before you decide to choose an S.W. James of your own. We are here to help, and we work closely with you throughout every step of the production process to ensure you are 100% happy with your new S.W. James when it arrives in your home.

We’re a passionate team and we love to talk about our Chesterfields and vintage sofas. As a result, if you have questions before you order, or at any point during production, just ask. You will always talk directly with Warren and the other business founders.

Call the team today for a friendly chat on

+44 (0)161 359 5462

Or email Warren and the team by clicking here : warren@swjames.com.

Our office hours are Mon- Fri 9am to 6pm, Saturdays 10am to 6pm, Sundays 10am to 4pm. Feel free to call any time. If the office is closed just leave a short message and we will call you back as soon as possible. Alternatively email us any time you like.