Saturday, July 2, 2011

A Kitchen Chair Update

Years ago, before I got married, even before I met hubby, when I was preparing to move out on my own for the first time, my parents bought me a cute vintage dining room table with 4 chairs. Ok, so I use the term "cute" loosely here. The general shape and frame of the pieces is cute. The pattern on the table and the slippery, discolored vinyl chair seats and backs....much closer to hideous.

I've been meaning to recover the chairs forever. In fact, I think I promised by husband I would recover them when we first moved the table and chairs in a year and a half ago. I was finally inspired by my new tablecloth to go look at fabric, and Jo-Ann's didn't disappoint!

Love the stripes! I decided to just do the 2 chairs we always keep out first. The other two are stored for when we have company, and I think I want to do them in a different fabric, anyway, so it looks a little eclectic. We'll see!

I did the seats first, because they are super easy and I knew what I was doing there! I had a little helper for the first part, but as soon as the fabric was laid out on the floor for cutting, she had to go somewhere else :)

So I unscrewed the seat from the frame and laid it out on the floor on top of the fabric. I left the fabric folded over so I could cut the seat for both chairs at the same time. 'Cause I'm a little lazy like that. Also, I don't measure often. That will come into play later :)

I laid the first piece of fabric face-down on the floor, and put the seat face-down on top of it. Then just used the staple gun to attach the edges of the fabric on the bottom of the seat, making sure it was pulled tight, but not too tight.

The bottom doesn't look too pretty, but if anyone goes as far as looking underneath my chairs to see how well I did, well, I guess they deserve to see the truth! This looks a little nicer.

Oh, and I didn't think on the first one to mark, or even pay attention to where the screw holes were. So I had to search under the fabric on the seat bottom to look for them. And even then I was lazy and just pushed the screws into the fabric a little to mark the holes. I know, I just can't be trusted to anything!

So I got the seats done, and then the hard part began. I mostly made it hard by trying to take the easy way. I thought that instead of pulling out the sewing machine for the back covers, I'd just use my handy iron-on adhesive. And I wanted to make them so the covers could be removed easily for cleaning. I thought I might just put Velcro on where they would close on the bottom. And I thought I could just fold over the fabric when I did that and wouldn't have to hem the bottom. So, I cut the fabric to size (as one piece for each chair, so I could just fold it over at the top) and used the iron-on adhesive to "hem" the sides. Then I could slide the cover down over the seat back like a pillowcase. That part worked fine.

But when it came to the bottom, it did not work out. My Velcro didn't stick well enough to hold the fabric together, and there was only barely enough fabric for it to meet on the bottom (because, remember, I don't measure! Please don't be like me). It was just a mess. So, I broke down and hemmed the bottoms, and stitched a piece of ribbon inside the front and back of each side of each cover, so they tie.

Didn't turn out quite like I thought, but I actually love them. And they are so much better than before! Here's the whole picture:

I've said it before, but I have got to work on my photography skills, because these pictures just don't do my projects justice! But you get the idea!

Have a wonderful holiday weekend, and don't forget all the sacrifices our forefathers had to make so that we can be free.

1 comment:

  1. Howdy! Do you know about how much fabric you used for each chair? I have almost the exact same chairs to cover this summer. THanks for posting, great tutorial!