Wednesday, October 5, 2011

A Golden Throne

Our neighborhood listserv is a wealth of information and furniture cast-offs.  Want to find an honest plumber or a dog sitter?  E-mail the list serv.  Want to get rid of a cat-pee stained wingback chair?  E-mail the list serv.

As I've mentioned before, I like to troll the listserv and our neighborhood streets for free finds.  I'd wanted to learn how to re-uphoster a chair for a while, but didn't want to spend much money acquiring the chair (seeing as I'd have to fork it over for fabric and other supplies).

A couple of months ago I hit the jackpot.  A neighbor a couple of streets over posted that they'd left a free wingback chair in their front yard for any takers.  I took it.  

We got it home and looked it over.  It was slip covered in a frilly yellow with blue piping.  Ugly.  And underneath was a thick creamy fabric stained with cat pee and who-knows-what-else.  Uglier.  In fact, the cushion was so gross that I threw it out alltoghter rather than keeping it to use as a pattern.

I should have taken pictures, but for some reason I never got around to it, so you'll have to take my word for it. 

When my mom came to visit we tackled the beast, or as I like to call it, the Throne.

We stripped away all of the old, disgusting, cat-dander infested fabric and batting.

And got it down to the bare bones:

 Then we used the old fabric as a template to cut out fabric from the new yellow and grey suzani Blake picked (he has really great taste!).  My mom is an engineer and is absolutely meticulous about having things line up exactly right.  This is great for me because I'm more of a "we'll see how it goes" sort of crafter.  So we agonized over every centimeter of the fabric to make it line up correctly through all of the seems. 

With our pieces cut, we began stapling and nailing the fabric to the hardwood frame.  My parents got me a staple gun for Christmas last year.  It's been invaluable and I consider it to be my version of Blake's power drill.  Who says women can't love power tools as much as the next guy?

As we neared completion we were both exhausted (and Blake, too, who we'd enlisted to help with our particularly difficult stapling needs). I now know why people pay hundreds of dollars to have someone else recover their furniture. It's backbreaking and tedious work. But it is so worth it. I've never done a project where I was more suprised at the results. The before and after were shockingliy different.

I am so happy with the way it turned out.  But you'll have to wait to see the finished product until I can get Blake to take a photo of it with his fancy camera.  The iPhone photo I took doesn't do it justice.   


  1. Love the fabric. Blake does have good taste! I can't wait to see how it turned out!

  2. Why do we live soooooo far away?!!!!

  3. I am in love with this chair and so impressed that you did this yourself. Amazing!!

  4. Thanks everyone! I'm glad you like it!

    Joni: I don't have your e-mail address...if you see this would you mind sending it to me (rachel[dot]rasband[at]gmail[dot]com)?

  5. you did that? you're amazing! i'm in love with it :)

  6. Ok, well you are just impressive. I LOVE that fabric.