Posts tagged ‘upholstery’

Home Sweet Home

When my Anthropologie catalog arrived last week, I was immediately drawn to these photographs. It’s a crafter’s dream– an upholstered HOUSE. Look closely– the artwork on the walls is made of cloth. The paneling on the walls and the doors is all needlework. Even the light switches are stuffed! Impractical, yes. But so pretty!

I have house and home on the brain these days because we’ll be moving at the end of the month. We’ve been in Salem for three years now, which is the longest I’ve stayed anywhere in a really long time. There’s definitely something to be said for sticking around for a while and really getting to know a place. In some ways I’ll be sad to leave Salem because there are lots of things about this little city that I’ll miss. I’m really going to miss being able to wander around downtown on a whim. I love just heading down there on a warm Saturday with no idea where I’ll end up. Sometimes as I walk around the back streets of the Derby Wharf area or past the McIntire mansions of Chestnut street, I feel like I’m transported through time. I imagine what life was like here a hundred years ago, or two hundred years ago. I can almost hear the clatter of horses’ hooves as they pull carriages through the cobblestone streets. Oh wait, that IS the clatter of of horses’ hooves as they pull carriages (full of toursists) through the cobblestone streets.

I’ll miss seeing the harbor every day and smelling the salty air. I’ll miss brunch at Red’s, the Peabody-Essex Museum (which has a really cool photo exhibit of the art of Maori tattoos right now, check it out!), and frozen yogurt delivery until 11:00 pm! (Sometimes, you just gotta have it in your pajamas.) Of course, I’m NOT going to miss the traffic, trying to park downtown during a snow emergency, or shopping at the black hole that is Salem Market Basket.

As for our apartment, I do like it but I don’t think there’s much about it that I’ll truly miss. I’m definitely not going to miss having only one kitchen cabinet and almost no counter space. Sayonara, grimy bathroom floor. You are someone else’s pet peeve now.

April 7, 2008 at 2:10 pm 1 comment

Finished Project!

Last night I completed my latest furniture project, an old chair sorely in need of refinishing, the newest member in my family of rescued chairs.

To refinish this chair, I removed the upholstered seat, sanded the wood down, and filled in the holes with wood filler. Some of the dents and holes were large so I had to apply two or three layers of wood filler. Then I sanded it down again, and wiped it clean with a wet rag. Next I applied a primer using a small foam roller.

Once the primer was completely dry, I applied my paint. I used a high gloss paint from Ace Hardware in a shade called “Wicker,” again using a small foam roller. The high gloss paint tends to be more durable for painting furniture. (From past projects, I know that there are also some specialty furniture paints at Home Depot and Lowe’s that will provide durability but are available in other finishes like satin or eggshell., if you don’t like the glossy look.) I had to give the chair two coats of paint and then did a few touch-ups to get good coverage. I made sure to let the paint dry completely in between coats.

Reupholstering a cushion like this one is very easy. I removed the old foam and fabric (yuuuuucky…) which had been nailed on. Instead of new foam or cotton batting, I used an old fleece blanket as my cushion (another upcycling success!) I cut three layers of the blanket and one piece of my upholstery fabric to a size that would cover the seat and reach around the back of the seat to a spot where I could staple it securely. I then used my staple gun to secure the blanket layers and the upholstery fabric to the seat. It’s best to start with one staple in the middle of one side, then one staple in the middle of the opposite side, and then to work your way around that way. You also need to keep checking to make sure that your fabrics are pulled tight and are not bulging anywhere.

Finally, I screwed the new cushion into place and… TA-DA! A lovely new chair. Here are the before and after shots:

chair-before-and-after.jpg

It’s hard to tell from the photo for some reason (okay, it’s because of my poor photography skills and bad lighting), but the chair was originally in much worse shape than the photo makes it look. Now it’s my new favorite chair. And did I mention I have LOTS of chairs?

…oh, no! Look who else loves my new chair already…

cat-in-chair.jpg

November 20, 2007 at 11:36 pm 4 comments

The Save a Chair Foundation

I have a thing for chairs–old, lonely woebegone chairs, sitting on the curb wondering what fate awaits then when the garbage truck rounds the corner. I don’t really need any more chairs, but I keep rescuing them. I see them sitting next to the old mattresses, broken lamps and pizza boxes, full of promise, each with something special about it that its former owner failed to notice or forgot all about when the new dining set arrived from Bernie and Phyl’s.

All I have to share today is a picture of my latest find. This is the “before” photo– I’ll post the “after” photo when it’s finished. In the meantime, you can see another chair I rescued in my last post. This one is a little rougher-looking than the picture reveals, but it will get a fresh coat of paint, a softer cushion, and some snazzy new upholstery. It too will find its place at my table of adopted chairs. The next time you take a walk on garbage day, won’t you save a chair too?

2007_11_12_beforechair.jpg

November 12, 2007 at 5:59 pm 1 comment


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