With spring cleaning season upon me, there are always a few projects that I intend to start; projects that I have postponed for months, maybe even a couple years. You know the ones– the bag of beads you bought at the beach hoping to string a necklace, or, the pillow shams you’ve been meaning to sew with the fabric you bought on sale. I have countless potential projects that could turn out to be extraordinary finished products. Unfortunately, I am either too distracted with other minutia in my free time or I’ve changed my mind about the original idea.
One project that I have been putting off for about three years is re-upholstering a chair I purchased from a consignment store. The chair is short, squatty and green. Not a delightful emerald green or luxurious fabric. Nay, the fabric is avocado green and yellow stripe cotton and needs to be burned. Though the color was off-putting, I didn’t care. The chair is perfect for a dressing room and I love it. It has sat in my bedroom since I bought it, and whatever changes were made to my bedroom décor, the chair never changed. So this spring cleaning, I decided to spruce it up and toss out the old avocado with the garbage.
I don’t have a lot of experience re-upholstering furniture, so I enlisted the help of my crafty sister who has a gift when it comes to giving new life to old furniture. First, she and I removed the old fabric using pliers to extract the brads and tacks (reserving them in a bowl for later use). Then, we measured the new fabric for the top and bottom halves of the chair. After measuring, we started stretching the fabric over the bottom half. Making sure the fabric was smooth and pulled tight, we then secured it with a staple gun. For the front of the chair, where the fabric wraps around the legs, we reused the old fabric brads to give it a polished look.
Once we made sure the fabric was secured on the bottom cushion, we began working on the top of the chair. This is where it gets tricky. A little patience is necessary, as hammering in brads can be tedious and scrupulous work.
All you need for this project is a beautiful fabric of your choice, a hammer or mallet, upholstery brads, and pliers. It really is a fairly simple, at home DIY that can save you a little cash; rather than sending it off for someone else to do. The finished product is something you can feel good about accomplishing on your own.
Spring is a time of renewal and things coming back to life. It was time I gave new life to my favorite old chair. I appreciate it now more than ever.
Written by Caitlin Cheatham
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