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Monday, June 17, 2013

How We Updated Our Dining Room Chairs


Last week when I got tired of packing I decided to take a little break and do some painting. This will be the fourth place that Jon and I will have lived since we got married. Before each of our previous  moves I painted and recovered furniture and made pillows and did as much work ahead of time as I could, so that when we moved in I would have a head start on each room. This move I hoped to do that as well, but I quickly discovered that with two helpers just packing alone was going to be quite an accomplishment to have done in time! So, I gave up on my grand plans of stripping and repainting multiple dressers and other furniture pieces and making new bedding for Lillie and Lola's new room and just went with the two easiest projects on my list  - quickly repainting the porch chairs and then sprucing up the two french chairs in our dining room. 

Now, if you are wondering why I would bother to redo the french chairs let me show you. About a month or two ago we decided to let Lola start sitting in a chair without her highchair in the set. When we removed the high chair seat part from the french chair we discovered lots of things had been dripping down through her seat and all these lovely stains greeted us:

The first thing I did was remove the seat. This one actually doesn't have any screws so you just pull it out. It does take a good bit of wiggling though seeing how it fits in there very tightly. Our new house is quite dark so I am planning on really lightening it up as soon as we move in by painting all of the walls and trimwork. I am going to do lots of white and grays and so am trying to get away from some of creams and browns we have now. On some of our pieces this won't be possible but I'd like to lighten up as many as I am able to. For these chairs as well as the dining chairs on our porch I painted over the creamy color with Dove White by Benjamin Moore. (I also plan on waxing it but haven't gotten to that yet and at this point probably won't until we are settled in our new place.)


Fortunately they didn't take too long to paint and just took two light coats. I am planning on distressed the white a little bit but haven't gotten to that yet.

Next up was recovering the seat. Although I do like the fabric (and would use it in a bedroom) it wasn't what I had in mind for the seat. I was looking for something more muted with a lighter gray. Unfortunately though I decided to do this last minute so didn't have time to order any fabric online and just ended up running to both of the fabric stores we have here in town and this was the best option I could find that had gray and white in it.

I have changed these cushions out quite a bit. I think this was the fifth or sixth different time I've recovered them. It such an easy and inexpensive way to switch things up and because it's easy I don't have to stress too much if we have a major spill.  You just lay the fabric down with the backside up and then center the seat on top of it upside down.

Then I trim around the fabric leaving enough space to fold it over the sides of the chair and allow at least an inch or two to be stapled.

And then I start stapling.

I kind of fold it like this as I got around the corners. As long as you pull it nice and tight it won't be noticeable at all when the seat is back in place.

And there you have it! Now they look clean and fresh and ready for our new house.


And here they are back in their place at the table:


And if you are wondering why those shots are so cropped - well, because the rest of our house looks like this:


At the end of this week this will be someone else's house and we will be loading up the moving truck - ahhh!

28 comments:

  1. The chairs look great! I used to put towels on mine before I let my kids sit on them...Hope the move goes well!

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  2. I need to recover my chairs badly. I like the material and Thry look so nice and fresh. When you paint win Dove White is it flat or satin?

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    1. Thanks, Donna. I used one of their $7 sample cans for this one and am not sure the finish. I think it's eggshell though.

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  3. I can't wait to see your new house and colors inside because my house needs painting inside and I want to see your ideas

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  4. The fabric you chose is just lovely and how nice that you refreshed the chairs just in time for your move.
    Suzanne
    Pieced Pastimes

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  5. Ahhhhhhhh!!! You're moving! Phew, it can be a little overwhelming, especially with two little ones who need routines and feeding and baths and story time and well, basically just have to come first, even when you're burning to work on a project! Smart to do an easy rewarding project like the chairs! They look great! I like the fabric, and now that's done, and i'm sure it feels good, and you can cross it off your long long long list! I am excited for you though, and excited to see you fix up your new house!!


    Cindy

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  6. Oh my gosh! I just noticed that you only need one more follower to have 6000!!!!

    Good luck with the move & love the new paint. So fresh.
    molly

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  7. Beautiful, I love how they look with the fresh coat of paint and new fabric. I just used the light blue version of that fabric in my laundry room, so pretty! Can't wait to see what all you will do in your new home. I am sure it will be gorgeous! :)

    Kimberlee

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  8. How Exciting!!! I know how crazy it is to pack & move with little ones, We moved late last summer and my Girls were 2 & 4 same as Lola & Lilly :)
    Good Luck with everything. I cant wait to see your new house! Happy packing :)


    Stephanie

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  9. Hey lady, these look great! I really love the seat fabric!
    Thank you for sharing.
    Leticia

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  10. These chairs look fantastic. I love putting a new seat on chairs. Just an idea - with our little ones (during there messy eating stages and potty training) I put a clear wipe away cover over the top of the fabric. Its about $4 a yard. No one has ever really noticed until they sat on the seat. Just an idea if that is something that bothers you daily. Not sure if it is the best idea for photographs. Good luck with your move!!
    Kathryn

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    1. What a great idea, Kathryn. Thank you!

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  11. The 'new' chairs look great!!! Wishing you a smooth move and can hardly wait for the new house reveal :-)
    Hugs, Gee

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  12. Your chairs turned out great! I know moving is stressful, especially with two littles, but it sounds like you have a wonderful place to go to. I'm so excited for you and excited for us lucky readers who get to watch you make the house your home!

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  13. Love the chairs! Where did you end up buying the fabric? I really like:) Can't wait to see the new house and all the new decorating you end up doing.

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  14. Looks fabulous! Something so simple, really makes a huge difference...can't wait to see what you do with your new home!...xv

    http://vickiarcher.com

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  15. Love the makeover, and the fabric looks wonderful. Good luck this week, I'm sure it's all bitter sweet you all.

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  16. Looking forward to seeing your new space, and these chairs look great, love the pretty fabric :)

    xo, Tanya
    twelveOeight

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  17. So excited to see your new place! Hope all goes well with the move. =)

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  18. Beautiful job with your chairs and I like that fabric. All pretty and fresh for your move! Love the little glimpse of Lillie. Looks like she is reading or selecting a page to color. Hope your week is going smoothly Jennifer. Soon you will be all settled in your new home.

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  19. I love that fabric! I am also so excited about your new house, I can't wait to see it!

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  20. The chairs are gorgeous, Jenni! When the girls were young Uncle Gary put on vinyl on the seats, just on their chairs! For this house he redid them to match our wallpaper.We drove all over STL trying to find enough material because it was not being restocked. Glad you are so talented!And you are! In everything!love!

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  21. Good post. Planning ahead when moving into a new space may help to lessen the stress of the move.

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  22. The fabric you used for the chairs looks great. The color combination is also great.

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  23. Seriously, I love what you have done with the place. I love the idea of getting older worn out dining room furniture in Vermont and then making it new again. I think I should show this to my husband and give it a try. Great share!

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