As seen in Sources+Design; November 2011 Issue

Matt Cepkauskas of Excellence Upholstery & Design is somewhat like the Sigmund Freud of sofas and chairs. Bring in a client, and he’s likely to gently size the person up, asking them where the proposed seating will be used, how it will be used and by whom. Cepkauskas will also ask the clients to sit in one of four different “test” armchairs, all done in a neutral beige fabric, to determine which seat depth and back height is best.

“I can look at a person on a piece of furniture and tell if something is comfortable for them,” explains Cepkauskas. “It’s all about how far back they sit on the seat and the position of their knees.”

Such analytical attention to detail is the hallmark of Excellence Upholstery & Design, a firm that Cepkauskas founded in 2005 with business partner Angel Iniguez. Cepkauskas, who has a background in customer service and wholesale upholstery and drapery workrooms, handles the business, sales and marketing side of things. Iniguez is the artisan, bringing more than 20 years of experience in hands-on upholstery. Their 3,200-square-foot space in the Deer Valley neighborhood of north Phoenix includes an airy showroom and a spacious workroom, where Iniguez and staff create everything from new sofas, chairs and ottomans to more unusual projects, such as an upholstered table and bookcase. “We do reupholstery and slipcovers, too,” says Cepkauskas, “and, lately, we’ve been doing a lot of wall upholstery on site, for home theaters, bedrooms and powder rooms.”

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