Slowly but surely I am making progress on my ongoing upholstery project. I am so close to the end that I can taste it, but at the same time I also realise that I still have a way to go. In fact it has taken so long to get to this point that I am considering roping of the chair to ensure people view it from a distance only. I mean, if its ok for the National Trust… in just the same way as the National Trust does in all of it’s historical buildings. My biggest problem is that I am only at college once a week and this just isn’t enough time to get it completed at any great speed. I have brought it home a couple of times to get extra done but unfortunately I get so far and then have to wait, take it back to college and get advice on where I should go next.
My chair so far
Looking at the front view it looks pretty much completed and I cannot wait to see it completely finished. I know it is going to look amazing once it is finished…I mean it has to because I can’t believe that you can spend this much time on a project and it not turn out great (I am a glass half full type of person). Unfortunately, when you look at the back it doesn’t look anywhere near complete.
My Not So Finished Chair Back And Outer Arm
As you can see both the back and the outer arm need to have top fabric putting on it and also the bottom (although I don’t have a photograph of that) needs platform cloth putting on to tidy it all up and hide all of the chairs insides.
Having only 9 weeks of college left, which incidentally is a total of 27 hours, it is safe to say that I am rather worried about whether I am going to get it finished. The only solution is to make sure I do much of the work needed outside college time. This worries me slightly as I cant help but think that I am going to get something key and very important wrong. Although, this worry has aided me in certain situations as it has driven me to check all measurements prior to cutting my top fabric over and over and over again…and sometimes just one or two more time to make even more certain.
Irritatingly, college is closed for the next two weeks as it’s the Easter holidays so in order to continue working on it I have brought it home in a hope that I will be able to get the arms covered in my plain blue top fabric (the same as the seat). Just bringing it home is an effort in itself. Especially if you consider the fact that I am no longer able to carry it by myself and the fact that it is wider than most door ways. This means that not only am I required to find some poor unsuspecting soul to help me move it every time I want to work on it but every time it needs to be taken through a doorway it has to be flipped and turned in order to squeeze it though the frame. Bringing my chair home turns into an epic game of Tetris as we negotiate around various bends in the corridors, doorways and finally face the challenge of trying to fit said chair into the boot of my Vauxhall Corsa. Thankfully transport to and from the car is made much easier thanks to the fact that a very innovative and brave college tutor of the past stole an Asda shopping trolley purposely for moving such items of furniture. So I have a big THANK YOU to this person as they have saved me on many an occasion.
College has started and so the true housey crafting really begins. On a Tuesday I go to a soft furnishing class. At the moment I am making a sample curtain, which is a mini curtain that teaches you all the skills needed to make a curtain but on a much smaller scale. I am really liking this project because as I learn each new skill in curtain making I am imagining lovely bright red curtains with white spots for the craft room/home office. I am determined to make my own curtains for each of the rooms in the house…fingers crossed.
On a Wednesday it’s my upholstery class and so I have begun to strip down my bargain eBay chairs.
Unfortunately this is not the most updated photo but it does give you an idea of how it is going. I now only have the top of the arm take off and a few staples to dig out of the wood. Then I will be able to begin making a template of the back to decide where to put my buttons. This may seem a little early but I need to know this before I can even consider putting my webbing on because the buttons will go in the gaps between the webbing. It makes me excited for next week though because I am sure that once I have taken the last of the arm foam off I will be able to start the fun part…rebuilding it. I will keep you updated.
It sits in my conservatory and the bright stripes really brighten up the room. On first glance it just looks like an ordinary chair. But to me this is no ordinary chair. This is my best upholstery project from last year! For the past year I have spent 3 hours a week, on a Thursday morning, at college learning upholstery and with the support of the tutor I managed to completely strip down, build up and upholster this chair.
This is what the chair looked like before.
Sorry about the blurry photos. They were taken on my phone and are unfortunately the only ones I have. Here are some close ups.
Before – Close-up
Before – Close-up
It was yet another eBay bargain. I was able to get this little beauty for £5! I then has to spend money on materials and fabric which cost a pretty penny but even with that it was still a bargain and way cheaper than it would have cost me to buy one brand new. It looks a million times better with its new upholstery.
Yesterday I found myself with itchy fingers and decided that my sofa (which sits in the conservatory with my chair) also needed something. So remembering how I still has some left over fabric from the chair decided to make some matching cushion covers.
Matching cushions on the sofa
Matching Cushion Close-up
I made them into envelope covers as this meant I could take them on and off to wash but I didn’t then need to buy any zips. I already had the cushion pads that needed covers so in my head that means they were…FREE! I do love that word!
I love eBay! I particularly love eBay when I find an amazing piece of furniture at an amazing price just needing a little bit of care and attention. So on one of my regular eBay searches I came across these lovely gems for the price of £66.00 (that was for both chairs so only £33.00 each).
My New Chairs
What are they doing outside I hear you say. Well, unfortunately at this moment in time we have not made a space for them in our new house (although they will be going into the conservatory) so they are in the garage. However, I have discovered that they make the most brilliant garden chairs. They are ever so comfy and they are lovely to sit on in the warm sunshine with a good book and a glass of something cold. It makes me wonder why I never put ‘proper’ chairs in the garden before, especially because we have space in the garage to store them. Maybe this is a future project idea…
They really are lovely chairs with a beautifully ornate dark wood frame.
I love the Dark wooden frame
Close-up of the back
Close-up of the leg and arm
I brought them for my upholstery course starting in September. This is my second year studying upholstery and I am really looking forward to learning how to do the deep buttoning on the back of the seat. I cannot wait to get to a stage where I can start choosing fabrics. However, first things first, I need to strip down the chairs to their wooden frame so that I can clean them up and building them up at college again. This won’t be done for a while yet though because I am enjoying using them as garden chairs far too much.
I love these chairs and cannot wait to see them in the conservatory all finished and being used on a daily basis.