Saturday, September 12, 2009

Advice needed...

I've been inspired. Lately, I've visited some blogs that demonstrate how to refurbish or refinish different items. Yesterday The Shabby Nest hosted a Frugal Friday Linky Party that showcased a variety of frugal decorating goodness. Some very talented ladies showed what they have created out of used and abused items.

Yesterday afternoon I found myself at the flea market. Usually, when I go to the flea market I just browse. Rarely do I find anything I "need." There are only a few items that generally catch my eye at a flea market... dishware, linens and chairs are at the top of that short list. I have a thing for older wooden chairs. I appreciate the workmanship that is often found on an older chair. They often have more style than their newer counterparts. Anyway, as much as I like to look at these chairs I've never been tempted to buy -- until yesterday when this one beckoned me...

I was drawn to it because of its boxy appeal and wooden detail ...

and the fact that it was $39. I wasn't, however, crazy about its raspberry colored upholstery (yikes) or the sunken seat.

The arms are very worn at the hand rest, which makes me think this was a well-loved chair at one time...

Anyway, this is where you come in -- I need some advice. I've never refinished or reupholstered anything. I was thinking of painting the wood black and then reupholstering the seat and back. I'll also need to add more padding to the seat of the chair. When I read about experiences where people have refurbished an item, they generally use spray paint to cover the wood, so I'm thinking that's what I'll do. What do you think of my painting it black? Any advice? Any suggestions? Any opinions? Any recommendations? I'm obviously in over my head... and excited!

13 comments:

MiaKatia said...

We refinished that chair that you gave us (similar to the one Kinzie has and refinished). We used spray paint and it worked fine, but I think there are better options, I just don't know what they are. It really is fun when you get into it.

Renee said...

Great buy!

I would paint it cream or a stone, because it would still show off that beautiful detail, and then go somewhat modern with the fabric. As far as tools, I used an electric paint sprayer when I finished my deck and it gave a much better finish than a brush or can. That way too, you can be much more particular about the color!

kisa said...

I love it. Whatever you do, you should definitely keep those brass rivets. Love them.

http://photos.nola.com/photos/tpphotos/cabde47dbca2fa006ec1d930d3ba47ba.jpg

Shawn said...

Love, love this chair!! I need one just like it for the play in my theatre....

I'm sure that you will be able to make it even more beautiful!

Cole said...

I would buff all the wood with sand paper and then oil/stain it the color of your choice--I love cherry with old chairs. Then I would recover with batting, for fresh cushioning, and your favorite material! Or I could just fly out and help...

Tolentreasures said...

I like the idea of the light color to show the detail and the idea of just keeping the wood is great also. I guess if I were doing it I would decide what to do by where I want to put it to fit into the decorating. The little upholstery that I have done you just have to remember how you took it apart and repeat the steps backwards to put it back together. I would use the digital camera and photograph each tear down step, only because of my "old" mind and the fact that ADD sets in and I go to something else and I would forget how I tore it apart. Great chair! Can't wait to see what you do with it.
Cathy

Julie said...

Hi Suzanne! I used to re-do furniture when I was younger and always used a brush and paint and then a stain...but I think now a days I would agree with Cole above! Using something like a stained Minwax would be so beautiful (after sanding)...you can get a darker near-black stain also...check out at Lowes or Home Depot, etc. That would be so gorgeous!!!

P.S. You are making me want to do some of this now...I need a beautiful old peice to do!!! LOL

PattiCakes said...

My husband and I are antiquers and trash pickers from 'way back. I would not paint that chair. The wood is beautiful. Also, keep the brass upolstery tacks.

Quilt Hollow said...

OH GOSH NO....I'm not so sure I would paint that old chair! The wood is gorgeous. I think a bit of stripping, sanding and new fresh coat of varnish with a wee bit of stain would do the trick! Then of course you can upholster with your choice of fabric....then TADA....a new chair!!

Kristine said...

I totally agree with what others have said that if you paint it, you would lose a lot of visual detail. And I know nothing about refinishing or re-upholstering chairs, but you did ask for advice on colors and I can do that ;) If you do choose to go with the black paint, which I think would still be pretty and classy looking, I would go with a white or red fabric depending on what look you want (the right color green would look pretty too). Now I feel stupid for chiming in though. :P

Annie of Blue Gables said...

I am with Cole and Julie. If you want it dark, then stain it really dark, but please don't paint that beautiful wood.
I have reupholstered many pieces, including a chair like this one. It was really fun. I did it for a customer and she chose her own fabric, it was a minty green micro fiber. It turned out just beautiful. There are all sorts of wonderful things you can buy to help you do the work.
My best advice: Take pictures of each stage of undoing, print and put into a notebook with notes. Keep them in order then as you put it back together, start with the last picture and go backwards to the first. This way you won't forget how it goes.
We used to have to draw it, but today with digital cameras, you can print them and put them in an album to help you reconstruct.
there are shops that sell the insides, the batting, webbing and all that stuff to help you redo the inside. I save as much from the original chair that is usable as possible.
Good luck. I wish I lived nearby, I would TOTALLY help you
~a

Raich said...

I think it depends on how much black you already have in your house...I feel like mine has too much and is a little too trendy looking right now so I'm trying to stay away from painting everything I haver black. Can't wait to see the fabric you pick for it though...

Julie said...

PLEASE let us see your finished project, or even better, each stage as you go!!!