My Selfish Act: New Chair For Guest Room……

The Partner thinks I am abnormal — well I am but not for the reasons he thinks.  He thinks I have an issue with sharing, which I will readily admit that I do.  It has been a struggle with my personality since I was little.  I tend to hoard things I like and don’t share — potato chips, cookies, clothes, etc…..if I like it, I don’t want anyone else to have it.

So when I happened up this cane chair a few months ago (okay to keep it real, I found it in February), it was cute but nothing special.  I would have gladly shared it with anyone who was willing to take it off my hands for the $28 I paid for it…..

As I said, it sat in my garage for months with a tarp on it, collecting dust and clearly no takers.  So in June I finally said “Enough” (actually The Partner threatened to take it to the curb and put a “free” sign on it) and decided to do something with said chair.  I toyed around with a variety of ideas, but eventually settled on recovering it with a handmade rug I picked up from Anthropologie for $40.

The rug itself was a gift from the upholstery angels.  Made in Uzbekistan, the front side consisted of colorful hand embroidered butterflies in an abstract form while the back was simple off-white duck cloth.  Fortunately, for me, the rug was constructed in such a way that a simple cross stitch was used to hold the two sides together, so I simply used a seam ripper (my teeth) and pulled the pieces apart.  So what I ended up with was two large 4×6 pieces of cloth – just enough to do the entire chair for under $50.

Since I was using a thick & unconventional material to cover the chair, I opted to use a professional upholstery person.  While I think I could have done the job myself but between the fabric selection, sewing, welting, tufting and staining, I felt it was worth the added investment to hire a professional especially in light that the fabric (aka rug) didn’t have any additional yardage so there was no room for error.

I waited 2 weeks and got a call from Rene that the chair was ready.  I went to his place with every intention of placing the chair on eBay or Craigslist to sell.  But then I fell in love………

This is where my inability to share kicked in — the chair was WAY cuter than I anticipated and I didn’t want to share it with the world.  It was MINE!  MINE!!!!  So I did what any respectable designer does….I went home and promptly went through my house trying to figure out where it would go.  Lucky for me, we had an Ikea Poang chair in the guest room that I never loved – actually I hated it from Day One but The Partner loved it.

Fortunately for me (and the chair), The Partner was away visiting family, so out went his beloved Poang and in went this beauty……


Not that all was lost…I sold the Poang chair for a tidy sum and used the money to buy a few new accessories for the room including a great brass tray and stretching the monkey painting I blogged about here.

While not my intention, by placing the new chair in the guest room it gave the room a needed jolt of personality.  Now the room is a mix of clashing  patterns (in a good way) that make it fun but still relaxing.  A few more tweaks and I will take some new pictures of the revised room.

So tell me….what do you think of my “selfish” act of keeping the chair for myself…


Would you have done the same?

Okay have a GREAT long weekend and take some time to relax!

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Dining Chair Slipcover Reveal

My technology fiasco continues to drag on with my old computer.  I am officially done with it I think and will be biting the bullet to purchase a Mac in the coming weeks (gives the one finger salute to HP).  So apologies for not posting yesterday…….

On Tuesday I promised to show you the new dining chair slipcovers and I am a man of my word.   A few months ago, I got this notion — this hankering — this need — to add pattern to the kitchen.  It was feeling a tad too sterile for my liking and was lacking warmth.  Or it could have just been that we were having a sucky and cold Spring — but either way, I was craving a change. 

On one of my regular jaunts to the discount fabric store, I ran across this fabric:

I instantly fell in love with the pattern — its large-scale print in greige, grellow and cream was the perfect foil to my white walls, charcoal trim and wood door.  It also coordinated beautifully with the teal I painted in the pantry.  What sealed the deal for me was that is was an indoor/outdoor fabric — perfect for a dining chair slipcover.  Who cares if you spill red wine!  Sticky baby fingers – no sweat!  I was pleasantly surprised to learn that it was $8.99 a yard plus it was sale day – SCORE!  So in my book, I scored the designing trifecta of beauty, function and price.  BOOYAH!

I bought 12 yards of the fabric (2 yards per chair) and called my seamstress to get to work on the project.  She whipped this puppies up in no time!  Here they are…..

 

I am really pleased with how they turned out and how well they fit into the overall scheme of the room.   And yes – I had my doubts…..I worried that since the chair wasn’t perfectly straight that the slipcovers would look bunchy and saggy.  While the slipcovers are not a perfect fit – I like the casual feel of them.  I am particularly happy that we opted to go with a pleated front to allow guests to kick their feet back rather than the fitted bottom I envisioned. 

The pattern is adding a lightness to the kitchen and a casual quality that I am loving.  It feels fresh and inviting – so mush so that I am having issues with Scruffy wanting to jump on the chairs now to take a nap.

So with this project done, I am now back to focusing on how to hang the chandelier I found for the dining room and mapping out details for the master bedroom make-over.

I am off to count my pennies for these other projects and potentially to sell a pint of blood to make them happen.  Have a great weekend!!!!

Upcoming Project: Slipcovering Dining Chairs

Happy Belated Easter!

This week I am traveling for work and pleasure…mostly work, but a boy’s gotta have a little bit of fun right?  In between school, design projects and running the household, I am stretched pretty thin at the moment.  Fortunately, classes end for a month in two weeks and one design project is winding down, so I have a bit of a breather.

So with this bit of down time, I can focus on at least one household project……slipcovering my dining room chairs.  Don’t get me wrong — I LOVE my dining room chairs…….

The Miles Chair from Room and Board is a versatile chair; slim in profile, they look fantastic with my glass dining table and equally awesome when pulled out to the patio for a casual dinner.  However, I don’t think the chairs were meant for the heavy wear and tear that I have subjected them to along with intense hours in direct sun thanks to my sliding glass wall.  The backs of two of the chairs is starting to warp and bubble and one has a small tear in the leather.

Drats.

So I have two options: (1) replace the damaged chairs and at $175 a pop, that is an expensive proposition or (2) slipcover these bad boys.  By now, y’all should know that I like to look at the frugal option  before parting with my cold hard cash.  Slipcovers it is.  But slipcovers can quickly spiral out of control and I could find myself spending a butt load (yes that is an official designer term in my book) on fabric and labor.

Fortunately, I visited my favorite discount fabric store and found this fantastic indoor/outdoor fabric in an oversized leaf motif:

The fabric is a fantastic mix of butter yellow, greige and green — it sounds odd but in the kitchen, it adds a fantastic pop of pattern and looks great with the teal in the pantry.  But the cincher is that the fabric is $8/yard.  I estimate that it will take 2 yards of fabric per chair so it cost me $100 for fabric and about $100-$150 for labor.  For a grand total of $250 or slightly more than replacing one chair, I can get basically six new chairs and a whole new look for the kitchen.

Now I just have to put this plan into motion…….and that is always the difficult part isn’t it?

So do you have a killer fabric you are dying to use in your home?  Share it in a comment!