a little weekend diy

i'm no master upholsterer (i don't actually know if that's even a word, but it sounds good enough for me), but recovering a cushion on a wooden chair is easy enough, and that's just what i did. my "studio" room, which i hate calling it because i think it makes me sound so pretentious, isn't the prettiest place in my house. aside from the mess on my desk, it's a combination of a sewing room, a guest bedroom, flojo's bedroom, and a jewelry room; so it's kind of hard to decorate. one big problem was the eyesore of a chair i had at my desk; the cushion was a disgusting orangey-red burlap type mess straight from the 70's, complete with a hole at one corner, pilling, and snags. why did i even own the monster? because it was free. i've been wanting to recover the cushion forever, and yesterday morning, i finally did it!

i'm actually kind of embarrassed to show you the before picture because the thing was just so hideous! notice i didn't show much of the fabric, and the hole at the corner is on the other side. i still think it's enough for you to fully grasp the distaste i had for it! luckily, i have several bolts of designer upholstery fabric in a corner just begging to be used, which, coincidentally, was my favorite price, free. i tend to put off sewing projects for a long time, as evidenced by the massive fabric collection i've accumulated.

and now for the after picture... the chair is still no great beauty, and i do see a coat of paint in its future, but i don't hate it anymore, and i'm not greeted by a big hole every time i go to sit at my desk. the fabric i used has a sort of velveteen feel, and is muted green and sort of a greenish slate blue (i'm terrible at describing colors). it was super easy, and the only supplies i needed were: fabric, hammer, screwdriver, and upholstery tacks (or staples).

so that's how i spent my saturday morning! next i hope to find a larger old chair with a wooden body and an upholstered seat, or upholstered seat and back that i can recover and put in my living room. i once saw an antique rocking chair at an auction with heavy, carved arms and legs with an upholstered seat and back, and i fell in love. i told chris to bid on it for me (because i'm painfully shy), but he didn't and the chair went for $2. can you believe it?!? he said that he thought i was kidding and that's why he didn't bid. hopefully i can find another one with that kind of price tag!

do you do any diy projects in your home? have you reupholstered anything before? speaking of upholstery, one day i'd like to make an upholstered headboard! have any of you done that before?


  1. looks great!!
    you had a very productive staurday morning!!
    happy rest of the weekend

  2. you did so great!
    i love the finished product. :)

  3. It looks fantastic. My mother is another master upholsterer and I am forever in awe! I love that you amass fabric on rolls. I just have piles and piles of it - I'm sure if it were on rolls it would feel much less reproachful!

  4. Love it.
    When I saw this I thought to myself, "I should do something like that, it looks easy enough.." and then I realized I don't own a single chair like that, with a fabric covered seat. They're all bare. Huh.
    Soooo, maybe I'll make a cushion instead, ha.

    (My captcha was pretty cute, 'ilymarch')

  5. thanks, michelle! now i'm sort of itching to recover everything, but that was the only chair like that i had!

    thanks, lydia! i only wish the new fabric photographed better!

    siubhan, i wish i was able to reupholster something big like a sofa, then i think i may be a master! i was lucky enough to get ALL of that fabric for free!

    aly, maybe you'll get lucky and find a freebie chair like just, just so you can recover it!

  6. The chair looks a lot better! Upholstery can be tricky! White paint would look lovely with the fabric choice!

  7. I love to see a good upholstery makeover.
    shelly leer

    I hope you find another chair or couch to recover!
    Projects are so much fun!

    show your whole house please!!@


  9. i'm always intimidated by re-upholstering projects, but yours looks wonderful! i think i need to give one of my chairs a face lift now!

  10. great work girl! looks good! wanna know something embarassing? we have chairs that we reupholstered in our house....but i didn't reupholster them...craig did! my hubby is way more domestic than me.

  11. Oh! I love it! You should totally paint the wood some funky glossy color. I actually had a very productive Saturday too, after painting the whole dining room and hall I finally put up my picture wall going up the stairs. I am going to blog about it today. I am pretty happy with how it turned out. I want a pretty headboard too, but Hubby is so against it and says it is to girly, but he is ok with a wallpaper background?! Go figure?!

  12. I need to make a cushion for my stool at work -- it is so frigging hard, it makes my bum hurt. TMI, I know, but still. If you are interested in selling cushions, I will totes commission you. Do you take dream interpretations as payment? ;)

  13. I have a set of chairs that are in desperate need of this sort of a makeover.


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