Monday, May 13, 2013

Chair Makeover - The Remaking a Curbside Chair for Under $20

So I drove by this chair sitting out by my neighbor's curb and absolutely loved it but had no space for a green chair (or any chair) in my house. After thinking about it for the evening, I decided I couldn't resist this freebie. It may have been the half bottle of wine, but I somehow convinced my husband to walk with me to get it. Here's what we picked up:

Cute, right? Once I got a closer look at it in the daylight, though, I just about completely regretted my decision of picking it up for a few reasons:
1. The vinyl was stained. No cleaning would get it off.
2. It was really dirty. There was no getting the dirt and nastiness out of the seams of the cushions. 
3. The bottom burlap was torn and the padding underneath clearly needed to be replaced.
4. There were spiders everywhere in the underside. Eeek!

I decided that I'd take a stab at recovering it. It doesn't have arms, which I thought would make it easier, and the frame seemed in good shape. If you're planning on recovering a chair, make sure it has a good foundation. This one had springs and I decided to keep them rather than switching to plywood since the springs looked okay. I took a lot of photos taking the chair apart to make sure I knew how to put it back together. I also made sure to keep the outside pieces in good shape to reuse them as a pattern.

Then I cleaned it with disinfecting soap and got all of the spiders and spiderwebs out of the underside. Yeesh, that was gross. I then let it dry, and primed and painted the wooden legs and back support a mint color from a paint sample. After those dried, I used an old burlap bag to cover the springs. This bag was free from a local coffee shop and was washed so it would shrink and not ravel as easily.  I purchased a couple yards of quilting batting from JoAnn's using a coupon for padding the chair. I stapled one layer of batting around all sides, used three layers for the seat, and two layers on the back support. It's turned out to be really comfortable. 
Making sure the cover would fit over the batting.
Then I used the old cover pieces to make the new cover by tracing them on the new fabric with a half inch seam allowance. The new cover is made from a 6'x9' painter's canvas drop cloth I bought from Lowe's for $10. I still have over half of it left for other projects too! Then my husband and I stretched and stapled the cover to the underside of the chair, covered the back and reattached the back to the chair. Here's how it turned out!

Before and after:

It's perfect in our living room and makes it seem more welcoming than before when we had just our gigantic sectional and one chair. I'm so excited to have this pretty chair in my space, and only for the cost of some batting and a drop cloth. 

On a side note, check out this sweet compound miter saw I found at a garage sale this weekend for $60. Barely used. Guess I have some projects to get started on!