Bringing sexy back: a story of a little chair.

I love reupholstering and refinishing furniture that have a story.  And of course,  working on a piece for a family member makes it even more fun.

My aunt asked me to reupholster a chair she inherited from her mother in law Chris.  She had passed away just a few years ago and was quite the lady.  She may have been short in stature but she had a personality that was large in life.  The chair had been purchased after Chris and her husband married back in 1940.  It was a cute, low chair. Perfect for Chris.  😉

Over time the little chair was recovered and well loved.  Once I started working on it, I found four layers of fabric!  Lots of work and love went into the chair over the years.

I started to take the first layer of fabric off and noticed that the stuffing and some of the fabric was easily falling apart. Its amazing how long everything held together.  There was a manufacturing label on the chair from May 1940!

I had a messy job ahead.  I removed the fabric, hay stuffing, padding and old batting.  And a million old nails, tacks and staples.

After the chair was down to the bare bones, I sanded down the chair legs.  They had been scratched up over time and lost their luster.  A couple coats of Minwax dark walnut stain and General Finishes top coat, the legs looked fantastic!

Before reupholstering the seat, I did some research and watched a few youtube videos to get some tips and tricks.  I’ve done a few chairs previously but I try to check out what the professionals use for tools and materials.  I’m always trying to learn more!  Here are some great videos that I found helpful (here & here).

 The chair seat had old zig zag springs that were in great shape, not bent or broken.  To make sure that the chair didn’t sink m too low, I stapled burlap binding underneath the springs.  I also tied the springs with strips of fabric remnants to make sure they didn’t shift.  I stapled a piece of fabric remnant over the springs to make sure there were no squeaks and to allow the foam padding to sit on something ‘solid’.   I cut the 2″ padding to size and shaped it to fit the seat shape (cutting the edges to make it not as square or cube shaped).  I covered that with a couple layers of batting and stapled that down.

The chair back was a little easier, as it didn’t have springs and had a solid back.  I cut foam to fit and covered it with a couple layers of batting.

Now the fun begins!!  I started with the seat, cutting the piece of fabric a few inches larger than needed.  Since I had to cut the fabric to fit around the chair back supports I wanted some leeway in case I made mistakes.  Luckily my aunt found a great deal on fabric and I had lots of room for error!

After reupholstering similar chairs I’ve learned a few things.  Here are some tips:  Take your time. Staples can always be taken out as long as you are careful with the fabric and wood.  Always cut around chair arms in small snips,don’t be too snip happy and avoid cutting too much around the arms.  Make sure the staples are somewhat in a straight line so if you are using piping or gimp as trim, you can make a straight trim line.  Don’t pull the fabric too tightly as you staple, it will look bumpy.  Hope this post helps, upholstery is fun to do!

Here she is in all her glory!  My aunt was happy with her little chair.  I think Chris would have loved the chair redo too.  Now the chair will be ready for another 90+ years 😉

 

Thanks for stopping by!

Laurena

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A room to dream of.

This past week I was asked to put together a mood board of my dream living room. Once I finished reading the email I, of course, panicked.   How can I narrow down so many options; sofas, chairs, coffee tables, and accessories into just one living room??!  The task would be difficult.  I find it hard to pinpoint my design style.  I love so many aspects of design.  Classic lines. Industrial mix of wood and metal.  Antique furniture with detailed legs.  Relaxed beachy decor.  And of course anything that Joanna Gaines puts together.  So maybe I can name my style…Eclectic farmhouse, East Coast chic?

The first thing I had to do before I started the post was to call a friend.  I needed my partner in design to help me!  I love any excuse to chat with my friend Penny.  And this task would be perfect for us to work on together.

Penny has always been fashion forward and on trend.  I love seeing what she comes up with when designing rooms.  We have similar tastes in furniture but we may have different design ideas.  While I need a little push to be bold, Penny isn’t afraid to test out new designs and styles. We make a good team that way.

Like many people, we spend long hours at work and a living room is a perfect place to unwind with a glass of vino.   Any room in your home should be a relaxing setting and filled with pieces you LOVE!

Since we had so many ideas for the living room, we thought we’d put together two mood boards.  It was too difficult to settle on one concept once we started brainstorming.

The two rooms would have the same wall treatments.  Crisp white.  Simple mouldings, like board and batten, that add texture and interest.   Here are a couple wall treatments we loved.

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We took a look at Arhaus and perused the many sectional sofas.  Oh my!  So many to love!  Both of us quickly chose and swooned over this tufted beauty.  We decided to use this sofa as the one constant in the two rooms.  The piece had a beautiful style and shape.  We wanted to show how one furniture piece could be used in different design styles.

Dream Living Room #1: East Coast Beach House

Calming colours, weathered textures and beach side elements are perfect for a beach house space.  Blues, greys and whites.  Weathered wood mixed with more refined pieces, like the tufted sofa, keeps the room from becoming too laid back.

There was something about the high-back chair, we had to have it in the room.  We loved the deconstructed back and weathered leather.

Of course no living room is complete without a bar.  A bar cart is a versatile piece, as it can be used for wine storage or as a side table.  Art is another must-have in any room.  For the Beach house, paintings of seascapes by local artists were perfect accents.

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Elements for “East Coast Beach house”

Dream Living Room #2: Urban Eclectic

The two matching wing chairs are the perfect pop of color in a very unexpected way.
We love the idea of injecting new life into the classic lines of a wing chair.  Using the bold blue fabric is a great example of how to change something old and dated into something fabulous!  Re-imagining furniture can transform your room, often with pieces you may already have in your house. We are obvious fans of DIYing!!
Furniture pieces with curvy lines and antique styles, like the black credenza and the white desk, add great interest and lots of storage options.  Fun patterns, animal prints and colorful art add perfect touches to a room.  The glass coffee table, bar cart and table lamp allows light to move throughout the space and keeps the room from looking too cramped and stuffy.

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Elements for “Urban Eclectic”

We love both rooms so much!  So many fun elements.  Imagining and designing the dream rooms was way too much fun.

We hope these two rooms inspires you to make your own living room a space to love and dream of.

Laurena & Penny

PS:  if you want to create your own mood board on your own room or anything at all, I used http://www.canva.com. So fun and easy to use!