We spent a lot of time, as part of changing everything from blue to tan, redesigning the cockpit cushions. Previously, we have had cushions and backs throughout the cockpit but Maria came up with a funky design which was partially backed with loose cushions for the rest. This was a difficult design but Maria is great at imaging these things and designed the cockpit cushions. The first quote we had was from a leading company and the cost was huge, it reflected the work required to get it right and we know that they would be perfect but it wasn’t really affordable for us. We then found a small company who could do the work for us. However, we had struggled to get Maria’s design understood by the company doing the cushions. When they first arrived, they didn’t fit and were nowhere near Maria’s vision. They looked awful, but Maria was able to talk them through how to make them better. At the next visit they were much better. Flushed with success, Maria commissioned the next, much easier, set that would cover the sunbed area and provide light cushions and backs for the push pit seats. Our original supplier seemed confident but, for some reason, he felt that Maria trying to get the design how she had envisioned it, meant that she had changed the design. Maria’s view was that she had kept the design to be what she wanted rather than something that didn’t work and that wasn’t what she requested. Anyway, with this in mind, we requested three simple cushions, one with a fold, for the sunbed area. James, our supplier, stated that any change in the design would result in additional cost. A little unfair maybe, but not unreasonable since we don’t think we want to change the design, and if we did we should pay for it. A few weeks later some cushions turn up…..they are nothing like the original simple design! We are non-plussed. We aren’t allowed to change the design, but you can change the design without even telling us! Rather than rectangular cushions we had a large sized cushion that covered the locker and the others fitted around it. Apparently, this was so that we could access the locker when the sunbeds were down. There was some logic in this but it made the bed sized cushions a funny shape that no one could lie on without lying on a crease. Just talking us through this would have avoided the stress, still a lesson learned. Maria is distraught, this isn’t what we wanted and we have a history of not putting up with second best. To cut a long story short, James wasn’t happy that we wanted what we originally asked for and returned our money and took back the cushions.
This left us in a predicament. After some time, we had another recommendation for cushions. This was Vanessa, who had done some work for some friends of ours, which had been good quality. However, she is busy which could be a good sign but will m ana delay. Maria spoke to her and described what she wanted. It did take longer than we expected but we are really happy with the results, which exactly match our cockpit cushions since James had kindly told us the material and colours. The simple design works really well the fold means that we can expose the hatch for the aft cabin, allowing more air in or as a food or drinks table when you are on the sunbed. Flipping it the other gives a standing area which is often where I am when steering via the autopilot because the visibility is so good.
Although, the push pit seat cushions need a little adjustment but Vanessa has been great and had expected some fitting. More pictures of those when they arrive.