This is about those five dollar chairs I snagged at ReStore got a little overhaul. Great lines and deceptively comfortable, but not in the best condition or colors.
Before I started anything, I took pictures of the upholstery detail. Because this is my first time upholstering something like this, the pictures could jog my memory if I ran into a problem.
With the pictures on my card, I started pulling each staple out. One at a time, prying with a flat screwdriver then pulling with a pliers.
Roughly one trillion times. I counted. Okay, I didn’t count, but there were a lot. of. staples.
At that point, I wondered what the h–e double hockey sticks I was thinking. Too late now, I had to keep going.
So I did. After pulling off the vinyl, I sanded the wood frame down using an orbital hand sander with 220 grit paper. And loved the lightness against the dark fireplace and the subtle grain. Two coats of Minwax Polycrylic in a satin finish brings out the grain and protects the wood. Conveniently, it’s water-based which makes it a breeze to clean up.
Then my indecisiveness kicked in. Upholstery time, but which direction to go. I stopped in a leather shop, gathered samples and prices, and thought it over.
Leather is super durable and easy to clean, but far more expensive than fabric. Not to mention I could only buy the leather as a full hide, roughly twice as much material as I needed. Perhaps if I had another use for the leather I could justify buying it. Instead, I hit up two fabric stores where I found a beige subtle herringbone pattern upholstery fabric for 9 bucks per yard.
I bought it, then stopped in the second store where I found a greige subtle herringbone upholstery remnant for six dollars per yard. And bought three yards. Now that I could justify. Yes, I chickened out on a bold color. Pillows can fix that. Right?!
To get started on the upholstery, I used the vinyl pieces I pulled off as templates, tracing it to the front of my fabric to keep the pattern straight. Don’t do that! Add at least 1/2 inch around the sides for a little wiggle room. I don’t have four hands, so I used a clip to keep my pieces straight while I worked.
First tacking the arms, folding the fabric under, wrapping around the back.
From the front, it looks like this:
With the arms secured, I stapled along the top and bottom, pulling tightly. Then the sides and finally the slightly rounded corners.
That covers the front of the back rest, so now for the back. Like the vinyl predecessor, I folded the fabric under, creasing it with my fingers. Using that crease as a guide for the outer edge, I stapled just inside the crease and worked around the top.
The corners are tricky to staple under, so then I tacked the bottom of the fabric to the underside.
Satin nickel nail heads, placed using a needle nose pliers, hold the sides of the fabric in place.
I’ve upholstered chair seats before, so I thought the back would be more tedious than the seat. As usual, I under estimated.
Turns out, the slight curves of the seat were a pain in the arse. No matter how hard I tried, the fabric puckerd at the turns. Finally I gave up and let the slight puckers stay. So, if anyone has pointers, please share! I’ll leave you with that, because I have to clean up the family room to take pictures of the finished chairs. Let’s pretend it’s because there are already 17 pictures in this post, okay?