Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Eclectic Chair Reupholstery

I had the opportunity to try my hand at reupholstering a few chairs for someone. I have never done it for anyone but myself, so needless to say I was nervous. I did repeatedly remind her I've never done this except for my own couches.

She said she started the chairs about a year and a half ago and just wore herself out working on them. She had quite a bit done on them so I thought it'd be easy breezy :)

The frame of the chairs was beautiful and classic, they even had their own natural distressing on the wood frame from age. It looked like they had been black and someone along the way painted them with an oil-based white paint that was worn through. She picked out a bold eclectic fabric, the kind that you either love or hate instantly. I loved it and it reminded me of something you'd buy from Anthropologie.

You'll notice there's a ton of nailhead trim, great look but not so easy. I found it was more difficult to pick up where someone had left off than to have started the project myself from the beginning. The old fabric was so old, crispy and sun damaged that it was torn off without having removed any staples. I'm sure it seemed like a great idea and way easier than taking every staple out, but it came back to bite my in the butt when it was time to add the nailhead trim. Every time I went to pound a nailhead in, it would hit a staple and bend a crazy way. I'd say every for every five tries only one of them would end up working out. Thank heavens she left me a ton of nailheads.  FYI, nailhead can be purchased in a strip where you pound in only one every 3 or 5, or you can buy them individually. The individual way means you must get spacing between each one exact, uniform, and very straight. I had the individual nailheads to work with.

Since the fabric had been ripped off, I also didn't have the advantage of the the old fabric to use as a pattern when cutting out the new material. There's no way I could have done this without the old fabric if they weren't fairly simple chairs. However, it was still difficult when cutting the fabric where the legs, seat, and top met.

Considering all the obstacles while finishing these chairs I think they turned out nicely. I live and learn from my experiences everyday.


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  1. These chairs came out great. This fabric is something else and I love it.

  2. You did an amazing job on them, they look amazing!

  3. You did a wonderful job on these chairs. I have some similar chairs to work on and you have inspired me to get my butt in gear and get them finished. Thanks so much for sharing!

  4. These look so great! And definitely not something you see sitting in some regular ol' store. You're more brave than me and it paid off!!!

    ~Anneke at

  5. Oh my - so pretty!
    Would love for you to come by and link these up to my party happening now!
    Stacey of Embracing Change

  6. love love love!! thanks so much for sharing!! Great fabric!