story of a chair


November 2011

About a year ago I bought this chair at the thrift store. I paid $20 for it. At the time I had a thrift store furniture sickness. I couldn’t pass up any table or chair that smelled like a good deal. Nevermind I had no idea where to put all the beat up furniture I was bringing home. If I thought I could slap a coat of paint on it and give it new life, I bought it.


February 2012

The day I found this chair I went straight from the thrift store to the armory where I dragged Caleb out of work to see my find. He was less enthusiastic. Something about buying furniture on a whim and without a plan. Alright, I conceded, from then on I wouldn’t bring home any more fixer-uppers until I’d refinished and found a permanent spot for the previous piece.

I don’t know if he had a sixth sense about this particular seat or what, but I haven’t bought a single chair or table since. 


March 2012

This is the longest running makeover. Ever. Once I got it home I just couldn’t seem to figure out what to do with it. So it sat. On the back porch. In the living room. In the studio. It served as a dog bed, a photo prop, a clothes holder, an extra livingroom seat for company, etc.

Until last week when I finally decided to do something about it.


First thing was to rip out the bottom and take a look at the webbing underneath. The chair had an awful sag in the seat. When I exposed the webbing I realized why. Some serious dry rot going on under there.

Whoever put this chair together the first time went a little staple crazy. Staples underneath AND on top? Necessary? Doubtful.


Not loving the molted stain look. Painting the chair didn’t seem like the right option either. Examining the scratched areas, I realized there was nice solid wood under the finish, so I decided to sand and restain.


I took apart the retro yellow cushion cover and copied the pieces to sew a new one with neutral linen. If your sewing ability is as limited as mine is, this is definitely the method.


New no-saggy seat bottom. Yeah, I know it looks like a lot of staples, but trust me, there are far fewer than there were before. Future generations will thank me.


New home in our bedroom.

The thrift store ban is lifted.