SOLD in 2020 for $2150.
The $2150 price was for just the 3-seater sled sofa- the swivel chairs have already both SOLD!
Selling from COFFS HARBOUR, NSW. Delivery Australia-wide is possible for a very reasonable additional fee. APPROX $230 to freight the sofa only to Sydney as an example (via a specialist furniture carrier).
Full Retail Price NEW of Full Suite from Tessa (now defunct) in FULL-GRAIN LEATHER- approx AU $15,000! The sled-based sofas are not easy to get and much nicer than the other ones. This suite was made in the late-1980’s.
(IMPORTANT NOTE- This suite is in the ORIGINAL FULL-GRAIN leather (from the late-1980’s). Top-Grain Leather is heavily processed and inferior. DON’T be deceived! FULL-GRAIN leather is the ONLY leather where the FULL-hide has been retained and has had very little processing. Top-Grain leather is the TOP-GRAIN only- all the underside has been split off (to make those really cheap, nasty leathers) the TOP ONLY is left- Top-Grain leather is the thin modern-day CHEAP alternative that first came into existence when Chinese furniture started taking over the Australian market (around the late-1980’s). TOP-GRAIN leather is susceptible to splits, rips, deep cracks and splitting at the seams. If you see leather on used leather furniture that has ripped it’s virtually always TOP-GRAIN leather- it’s worth LESS than HALF the price of full-grain leather like this.)
Background Info and Provenance
This is arguably the best leather sofa to ever come out of Australia. The Contour range by Grant Featherston is probably the most collectable in terms of dollar-value, but this design, the Tessa T21 Delmont sofa with sled base is a MUCH stronger investment. These sofas were being retailed new by Tessa in 2019 for $6000 (in FULL-GRAIN leather like this one). At this price I have no doubt that this piece will retain its value at least whilst you get to enjoy having it and using it your home. Some sofas are too “”precious” to actually use (particularly if you have kids!). This design in FULL-GRAIN leather is not only beautiful but a practical investment- these sofas have been built to last and the FULL-GRAIN VINTAGE leather on this suite (from the late-1980’s) is the toughest leather money can buy.
The value of T21 (and Delmont) furniture has sky-rocketed during COVID-19 lockdowns- the popularity has increased (and very noticeably) since the last Delmont suite I sold (back in March 2020 just before our first lockdown). The reason for EVERYONE wanting T21 furniture is simple- it is some of the MOST COMFORTABLE lounge furniture you’ll ever find- it has the right level of plushness and GREAT seating support. Notice the angle of the seat here- it slants back to hold you in the best possible seating position. This angle back is MUCH more expensive to build (they did it this way because it’s the very best way to make a sofa). You’ll also notice the higher back on Tessa T21 designs. This gives your back and neck additional support making it much more comfortable than virtually all modern sofas that are nearly always LOW-LINE (with a LOW back). What I love so much about this particular design is that the high-back works from a visual perspective as well. Normally a high-back in a sofa ruins the proportions of the piece and it looks wrong- “”clunky”” and awkward. This piece is STUNNING- it just works- the sled-base helps create a minimalist look but the timber frame adds some boldness so the proportions still all look right (even though the back is unusually high.)
This design is technically not the T21 design but the Delmont. The Delmont design is less known only because there are so few around. After 20-years in this business, this is the second time I’ve had Tessa Delmont furniture and the first Delmont sled-based sofa I’ve ever seen in the flesh. The only real difference I can see between the Tessa Delmont and the T21 is a refinement on the T21 design. The exposed timber runs up the entire side of the chair creating a classier look, the cushions have been streamlined and the armrest protectors have been markedly improved (or in this case were never put on at all). I don’t like the armrest protectors on the T21 design and in fact, I take them off whenever that works.
After a 50-year stint in the Australian Marketplace, making virtually ALL their furniture in AUSTRALIA, Tessa Furniture died late in 2019. It’s a sorry state of affairs when an Australian business can no longer do what they do so well because of cheap imports destined to end up as landfill. And this is the very reason why Tessa eventually died. Their designs are so well-made that the second-hand market for Tessa pieces ended up becoming more sought-after than new Tessa Furniture. And who can blame people going straight to the second-hand market for designs such as these? The QUALITY of this suite is so exceptional that second-hand suites often still look close to new after 10, 20, 30, even 40 years of use. In this listing you’re getting a sofa that has been used and loved (the leather does have signs of use) BUT this is about ONE THIRD of the price it retailed for in 2019! The investment appeal here should be obvious to anyone with half a brain!
Today in 2020, I believe this suite- the Tessa T21 Delmont with sled-based sofa- is THE best investment in the furniture marketplace. EVERYONE seems to want T21 furniture at the moment- these suites are NO LONGER in production so more people will hang onto theirs for a lifetime of enjoyment and less and less will be coming onto the secondary market.
This suite is about as good as you can get. The leather is neutral in colour which really suits the boldness of this design- it helps rein it back a notch. Additionally, you have to be careful buying Tessa Furniture. Tessa went through a stage (I believe from about 1988 to about 2015) when cheaper leathers were used. I recently saw a second-hand Tessa T21 chair being sold online upholstered with cheaper leather. The back-headrest leather had completely cracked through and a seam had totally ripped apart- significant cracking and rips will be inevitable if you buy a Tessa chair in a cheaper leather. Some of these cheaper “leathers” can disintegrate completely within 10 years. This suite is upholstered in VINTAGE, quality FULL-GRAIN leather (it’s likely to be Howe Leather- a premium Australian leather). FULL-GRAIN leather is infinitely better in quality compared to TOP-GRAIN leathers (or in the newer Tessa releases where the leather-type hasn’t be disclosed at all). FULL-GRAIN leather is the FULL LEATHER HIDE- it is THICK and has been processed a LOT LESS. If you clean this furniture after heavy use and condition it 3 or 4 times each year full-grain leather usually lasts 50 years (but often much longer- I’ve sold many leather lounge suites in the past that were 60 years old and had nothing wrong with the leather at all). Pigmented FULL-GRAIN leather (like this) is the best leather you can buy and the most durable. TOP-GRAIN leather is NOT the best leather you can buy- it can’t (and never will) last as long as full-grain leather.
This lounge suite is about 30 years old and has had heavy use but look at it! No guessing the quality on offer here. After much of the world’s furniture ends up as landfill, this suite will be passed onto another user and eventually a whole new generation. Now that no Tessa Furniture is made anymore, I can’t see any reason why this design (made in AUSTRALIA) won’t slowly increase to the value they were selling for new (ie. $15,000 for the full suite in full-grain leather). There’s no better way I can think of to invest in your home, the future of our environment and our local community.