The Woodworker, the Upholsterer, and Harry Styles

Portland-based Your House Couch turned a pop album cover mystery into a stylish reality.

By Angela Cabotaje Photography by Christopher Dibble April 25, 2023

Your House Couch's loveseat, lovingly crafted to mirror the one on the Harry Styles album cover.

When Helen Louise Helfand and Leland Duck, longtime Portland design collaborators and massive Harry Styles fans, spotted a vintage sofa on the cover of the British pop singer’s 2022 album, Harry’s House, they knew one thing: they had to make it.

Their primary goal wasn’t just to craft a comfortable, on-trend, high-end loveseat but also to collaborate with other Pacific Northwest makers and manufacturers. “Keeping it domestic and specifically in the Pacific Northwest was really important to us,” Helfand says. Their secondary goal, of course, was to meet Harry Styles. (Harry, if you’re reading, the offer’s still open.)

Internet sleuthing didn’t turn up much. Manufacturer, materials, era? Zilch. So Helfand, a woodworker and owner of Helen Louise Design, and Duck, an upholsterer and owner of Revive Upholstery and Design, started with the frame, sketching different vintage-inspired iterations before running through prototypes with local metal manufacturers. The base’s sinuous lines are tough to weld without visible welts, so the pair went for powder-coated, bent-steel tubing.

Next came comfort sit tests. Helfand and Duck stacked foams of various heights and softness on a frame prototype and ushered friends over to have a seat. “We were able to use both of our skill sets to make something that we knew was going to be good for all body types, something that was going to be comfortable and that you could sit on for a while,” Duck says.

Revive Upholstery already carried a wealth of fabric lines, so “we just ordered every single burnt-orange velvet that we could get our hands on,” Helfand says. The 200,000 double-rub abrasion upholstery they settled on is commercial grade for easy cleanup from pets to kids.

Helfand and Duck recently partnered with Woonwinkel to offer more frame and fabric customization options beyond the sofa’s original steel and burnt-orange velvet. And the two plan to continue releasing new designs through the product studio they made for this project, Your House Couch.

The sofa currently retails for $4,995 and is limited to 500 units, an exclusivity that Helfand and Duck purposely wanted to ensure the quality of the craftsmanship and feasibility as independent artisans. Each couch comes individually numbered by order of production. A portion of the proceeds go toward Crafting the Future, a nonprofit that helps fund and lower access barriers to artists and craftspeople of color.

Though their sofa was born of a pop culture reference, “the design stands for itself,” Duck says. The first customer, fittingly a musician, bought it solely for the visual appeal, not for the pop singer cachet. All the same, it’s safe to say Helfand and Duck have one on hold for Styles in case the singer ever comes calling.

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