The "Tapessièri"

 Valentina working on the central seat of a gondola

Valentina working on the central seat of a gondola

The “parècio” (set of furnishing) can be made in a number of styles: normal “de lusso” (luxury) or “de gala” (for weddings).

The “tapessièri” are the upholsterers who make the cushions used in the gondola, they prepare the “passenger area” of the gondola. Their work is to make the “sentàr” (the central seating and backrest), the two “careghini” (movable chairs) and the two “banchète” (fixed seats) as comfortable as possible. Historically, the richness of the upholstering was an exterior manifestation of the prestige of the “casada” (family), nowadays it expresses the pride and sense of identity of the gondolier.

The “parècio” can be made in a number of styles: normal “de lusso” (luxury) or “de gala” (for weddings). The choice of fabrics – acrylic, alcantara, brocade, damask, and velvet – also varies according to the “class” of gondola. Real or synthetic leather is also used.

Sometimes, as a sign of refinement, the designs of the damasked fabric are made to mach those of the engraved and gilded parts of the gondola. Otherwise, the fabric, especially that used for the backrests, can be enriched with Venetian lace (from Burano and Pellestrina).

 A luxury set of furnishing

A luxury set of furnishing