Mario Robles, owner of Contempo Auto Upholstery is working on his Buick Special 1963 red convertible in time for Buckeye Oktoberfest Helz on Wheelz Car Show this October 12th at Buckeye City Hall. Robles is neighbors with the Buckeye Machine Shop located 204 E Butler Avenue in Historic Downtown Buckeye, Arizona. Robles started Contempo Auto Upholstery 3 years ago.
What do you work on mostly? Cars, furniture, RV’s, basically anything that needs upholstery repair, “I take care of it!”
Who taught you this cut and sew trade? I started looking for a job 35 years ago in California. I stopped one day in an upholstery shop and I was given the opportunity to work there. Before I knew it, 3 years later, I was making patterns and sewing on my own.
How do you figure out exact measurements for your work? For example, for the convertible top for my Buick there are instructions and a convertible top already made that I order from the factory. I just use the instructions if I have any questions. My work does take experience. I pretty much know what I am doing.
Where do you do all the work? My machines are on site. How many sewing machines do you have? Five, including embroidery, overlock, zig zag, walking foot and serger. I can embroider any custom logo.
What is your work load? I have plenty to do! I am working on outdoor cushions for a company in Scottsdale, 1998 Chevy truck new interior, my Buick convertible cover, a bunch of car seats and then the custom dash covers are keeping me busy. You can find me every weekend at the Glendale Park and Swap selling custom dash covers. I enjoy what I do, and I make good money!
Contact Mario Robles at 602-435-2166
Interview by Lara Serbin of Buckeye Main Street Coalition