Wednesday, August 4, 2010

old chair gets a new life pt. 2 of 2

I had intended to post this Sunday night, but the kids are truly keeping me hopping. I did manage to finish the chair Sunday evening as planned. It is now back in it's room at my sister's place with a radically different look. As with my first chair, I made a few time consuming blunders that generally took around an hour to correct and most often involved the removal of LOTS of staples, but I expect to be just that much faster next time. I was stumped once or twice but it was those dastardly jaws - I don't know what they call them in the trade but "jaws" certainly makes sense - that came to my rescue.

In case you missed it, go here for part 1 to see the chair in its original state. I left off with the inside back and seat of the chair covered with fresh, taut burlap. Sorry to say that I failed to document a few steps. In any case, I went ahead and covered the back of the chair with burlap but I had to leave it open at the top in order to put in the buttons on the seat back which comes at a much later state.

Then, it was time to put on the foam seat cushion using upholstery adhesive. I learned with my first chair that you do not want to get this stuff on anything other than its intended target as it doesn't come off. I ruined my favorite skirt that way. I sprayed both the burlap covered seat and the very porous surface of the foam cushion and put it in place. Be sure your cushion is cut (I have mine cut at the fabric store) to over-hang the front edge a bit. Too small and you'll regret feeling the hard wooden edge of the seat at the back of your legs each time you sit down.

Once the foam cushion was in place, I covered the whole chair with fairly thick batting. As with the burlap, I stapled it to the chair frame in sections meant to match the eventual placement of my upholstery seams. I could have used larger pieces and avoid as much sewing, but with creative cutting you don't have to buy as much batting, burlap or fabric and you'll end up with a more tailored look with seaming.

Time for fabric. My sis chose a dusty brown velvet. First, I covered the seat cushion. It was important that I did yet not staple down the batting at lowest part of the frame around the entire backside. This is because I pulled the seat fabric around the edges of the seat to the underside of the seat in order to staple it pulled sufficiently tight. Second, I stapled - yes, stapled - the welting onto the front bottom edge of the seat. I made the welting using jute cording with the velvet sewn over it. Sewed the inside back pieces (3 pieces of fabric) together and stapled it to the top outer edge of the chair. Again, pulled the fabric down to the underside of the frame. It makes sense when you're actually doing it. I then stapled a length of welting to the top outer edge of the seat back. Finally, a step I did photograph.

View of welting all the way around edge of seat back.

ok to now staple down the batting around the base of the
back of the chair

a glimpse of what it's going to look like.

Time to begin putting in the jaws. First, around the upper outer edge of the seat back. After stapling in the jaws, I closed them about 3/4 of the way.

decided to try a funky twist with the welting at
the end of each armrest. Jaws are then stapled
on as close of possible to the welting.

putting in the jaws would be a miserable task
without a pneumatic staple gun.

I extended the jaws all the way down the outside edge of the front of the arm rests so that I could put on the fabric for the entire backside of the chair. As with the inside seat back fabric, I sewed the outside seat back 3 panels together before stapling it all around the bottom/underside of the chair. The upper edge of the entire piece of seat back fabric was pulled upward and tucked into the jaws using a thin flathead screwdriver. I trimmed off any fabric that did not fit into the mouth of the jaws or added too much bulk. A rubber mallet is the perfect tool to use, then, in gently pounding the jaws fully closed.

I like how the tip of each armrest looks. I could
have welted down the front edge of both sides
of armrests but I forgot to put the welting in in time

And here it is. Sis is happy with it, and I'm happy to have it DONE! Of course, I'm mostly pleased that she likes it. There will be more upholstering projects in my future, but I will consider them carefully. It was more work than anticipated, but I expect that might be the norm for this type of project.

very comfy and ready for generations to come.

No comments:

Post a Comment