Sunday, March 25, 2012

New Chairs!!

Well, like new! If you don't have kids, let me show you what happens when babies turn into kids that eat real people food.  Your dining table chairs turn into napkins. It doesn't matter if you provide the finest cloth napkins or the coolest Yo Gabba Gabba napkins, they will prefer to use the seat cushions as a napkin every time.
This chair apparently did time as an art canvas as well.
 So, my solution to the problem was to keep the chairs covered with towels. Uggh. So tacky and ugly. I would clean the cushions and then cover them, but they always got icky again. The kids would pull them off or they would get spilled on without me knowing and soak through. It was one of those things that would stir the kids suspicions if I was removing the towels. "Who is coming over, Mama?" because that is when the towels came off.
So tacky :(
 I have been wanting to recover them for ages. Pretty much since the first born was eating real food. Good quality upholstery material isn't cheap and I wanted something that wouldn't absorb and could wipe clean.

Here comes the local craft store super coupon. I was in there picking up fabric for my dress (last post) when they stuffed this weekend coupon in my bag that I just couldn't resist redeeming on this project.

I intended on getting some faux leather-looking vinyl but ended up getting some real leather because my coupon was so awesome. I hope I don't regret it.

This isn't my first go-round recovering chairs. I've actually done it a few times now but it was my first for this table. I am no furniture recovering expert, but it is really easy and I thought I'd share my technique. All you need is a stapler gun with staples and whatever fabric you want to cover with. I start with squares that are wide enough to wrap around each side.

Remove the cushion from the chair and lay upside down on your fabric. I always start with the straightest and longest side (usually the front of the chair) and wrap it up and around stapling from the center and moving outward. Hold the fabric taut without stretching it.

Next, I do each front corner hospital-style and staple in place. I don't know if this is a real term, but it is the same way you make a bed with hospital corners.

Front corners, hospital style
 I staple the sides up about midway and then move to the back. Starting in the middle, place a staple and then work towards the corners, but not quite all the way. This next part is always the trickiest for me, but it doesn't have to be perfect. This is where the slack gets gathered up. I pinch up the two sides together at the corner like in the picture below.

Don't hate on my favorite orange sweatpants.
 Then, keeping the ends together, I flatten them down so that there is a crease on each side (see below) and staple into place.

 Now, straighten the remaining fabric and staple into place.

Because I started with a square and covered a trapezoid, I have a lot of excess fabric. Trim back to about a half inch or so from where the staples are. Too much fabric will make it hard to fit it back on your chair frame. Also, I would recommend making sure you leave the areas where your screws go uncovered just to make it easier to put the seats back in place.

Hank the Cowdog wanted in on the chair action.
 Now you can screw the seat back into place.

Tada! My finished master piece! It looks soooooo much better.

All the happy chairs together! What a beautiful after picture!

Total cost: $54

Total time: 1 1/2 hours

Final verdict: I love, love, love the new look!!! Hoping it stays looking this awesome!

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