Wednesday, October 21, 2009

How to reupholster dining room chairs!

Well, the time has come to reveal what was one of the most difficult DIY projects I've ever done. I mean, I think this was harder than tiling. Then installing molding, fo sho. It was rough. Let me rephrase that -- getting the backs off the chairs was rough. The rest was easy peasy Squeezy. Serious. Let's go through the process, shall we?

First, you'll need needle nose pliers to really grip at the piping (if you have piping). There is no right way to do this, every chair was a bit different. But all involved pulling with the pliers -- with all my might:
Using a flathead screwdriver to pop out the meeeeeellions of staples:
People told me there would be hundreds of staples. I didn't quite believe them. There are hundreds of staples. Felt like eleventy billion.

Then when you start cursing and and sweating and are tired of fighting with the staples, you can just start using the screwdriver as a pry bar:
Even though I used a cloth under the screwdriver to protect the wood, it still got dented along the edges a little. I noticed it when I was doing it, but I haven't noticed the little dents since. No worries. :)

After you stop cursing and fighting with the chairs, take a breath, have a margarita and count to 500 -- then go after it again and just pull with all you got:
Margarita is optional, of course. Needed, but optional. I don't recommend drinking and DIYing. :)
This part seriously took FOREVER. It didn't get much better with each chair either. Some were easier than others, but they were just mocking me. The next one was always the worst of the bunch.

When you get the back off, there will be staples everywhere, so just grab these with your pliers and wiggle them out:
Now comes the EASY part. Covering the chairs is so simple. I wanted to use two fabrics for most of the chair backs, so I started with the back fabric and just stapled it along the sides, all the way around:
Then trim your fabric. For the next step, I used my own process to attach the backs. I'm not sure if this is the right way to do it, but it worked! I used my nail gun to secure the backs onto the chair:
The backs have a little lip that the nail went right into. This part did put me into a bit of a sweat, because you have to make sure the nail doesn't miss the lip on the chair frame. Does that make sense? I had a couple where the nail didn't hit the wood and are now sticking out the back. ;)

Then, I took the electric stapler (key word -- "electric" -- it's a must have for this project) and secured the front fabric around the front of the seat:
Then I trimmed that fabric again. I found a coordinating trim I just hot glued on to cover the staples:
And here's what you get!
The seats are easy -- you just take the cushion off and use the stapler to secure the fabric like I showed you here:
I chose a linen-type fabric for the seats:
Here's the worst of the damage to one of the chairs -- easily touched up:
This fabric was originally going to go on the back of the chairs, but I quickly realized there was only one chair you would see the back of (if I keep the bench I'm redoing), and the fabric was too pretty not to be seen!
On the backs is a solid brown faux silk. And when I got the room back together last night, I realized the print on the fronts of all of the chairs was a little too much. I have the head chairs in the corners of the room because of the bench I'm working on, and it was just a smidge too busy. So I recovered those with the solid brown to tone them down a bit:Joann's is out of my trim so once I get more of that, all six chairs will be done!
I cannot tell you how very much I love these chairs. They are LOVERLY! And they are perfect in the room. OH, and we only eat in this room maybe once a year. So there's not much of a danger of them getting food on them, but I do plan to stain guard them just in case. Cause I would totally cry if one got ruined. Serious.

I cross my heart promise to show you the entire reveal, with plenty of befores, later this weekend. I need to decide if I'm going to keep the bench at the table and if so, finish it up.

Stay tuned for another great giveaway this weekend! :)


Post a Comment