Monday, 22 April 2013

Before + After: Accent Chair

This is my second post in the 'Before + After' series: The chair was a simple project that I took on this winter, so I will keep this post simple as well. To begin, the chair was hideous. So ugly in fact, that I don’t think I would have purchased it from the thrift store myself. But luckily it was my mom who picked it up and brought it right to my front door. She didn’t even ask me to pay her back the couple of dollars that she spent on the old beast, so I figured I should try my best bring out the thing’s inner beauty.
It was a very straight forward project- which almost never happens- there's always that long drawn out hunt for the right hardware, AND it often happens that the proper screw cannot be found anywhere in the house and several trips to the store must ensure (over the course of days, obviously) AND there's always the times that I completely misjudge a paint colour and absolutely cannot proceed. Sigh. Just the thought of it all. It's all a little too familiar, no?

Anyway, this one was a breeze!

I'll provide you with the details in a simple photo step-by-step:

 The 'Beast'

 Some sort of faux velvet on the cushion, 
a shiny, orangey finish on the wood, dear me!

 Any seat can usually be removed using a minimum of effort.
Simply turn the chair upside down and find the right screw driver.

I applied the usual latex based primer.
For this project I had the primer tinted a dark grey.


 When the primer had dried, I applied two light coats of latex white.

 By brushing lightly in some areas and
simply wiping the wet paint away in other areas,
I was able to get the grey to show through.

I used a piece of 60 grit sandpaper to sand down some of the
edges and the detail work. The result was just a bit of
bare wood showing through the layers of paint.

Next it was time to tackle the seat cushion.

To remove the old fabric, I used a flat head screw driver and a pair of small pliers.

 I used the screw driver to pry up the old staples
–most upholstery is held in place with staples– 
and when I had trouble with a staple, 
I simply used the pliers to work the staple until it came loose.

 The cushion with the fabric removed.
Ugly old foam, but still useable.

 The seat before I began to reupholster it.

I chose a simple mint green fabric for the seat. 
It was a heavy cotton jersey-like fabric with just a touch of stretch to it.
And I chose it because it was on sale for less than $3/m.
(Of course it's cute too).

 For the reupholstery I laid the seat face down on the back 
side of the fabric and simply pulled it tightly around the square. 
I started by putting a few staples in the middle section of each side, 
and once each side had a few staples in it, I worked my way around, 
pulling the fabric tightly and stapling all around.

 Not the greatest photo, but the corners are folded 
neatly and tightly and stapled in place.
Then the excess fabric is cut away.
The last step was a quick reassembly of the body and seat.


Here are a few shots of the finished product:




The chair was easy to sell on Kijiji. I sold it for $40 after a couple of days. (Apparently, it now finds a home in the bedroom of a nice lady).

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