Shabby Chic Office Chair Makeover
This chair was a thrift store find for $20. Once it receives this chair makeover, it’s going to be my new office chair. As soon as I saw those long curvy legs I knew it would complete my new craft room office, along with this feminine shabby chic desk from Ikea I just refinished.
Disassembling the Chair
Carefully take the chair apart where necessary, look for labels and signs of age. Remove the seat and save the screws. This particular chairs label says the chair was made in Canada. The inside of the cushion is synthetic instead of horse hair, so it’s not really old. I think it’s likely from the 60s or 70s.
There is a registration mark of some sort inside the chair so I painted it before continuing, and kept the labels on the chair seat.
Refinishing the Chair
The chalk paint said I could just paint right on the existing finish, but to make sure the chalk paint adheres to the chair give it a light sanding. According to the instructions on the paint can this isn’t necessary. Old habits prevail and I always sand mine. If your comfortable skipping the sanding, you can skip it.
Once sanded paint the back of the chair with two coats of blush chalk paint. Let it dry for an hour between coats, (or as instructed on your paint can.)
Paint the rest of the chair with three coats of white chalk paint. The rest of the chair was given three coats of white chalk paint.
Let each coat dry thoroughly and sand lightly with 400 grit sandpaper. Sanding between coats gives the paint a smoother finish. I prefer it this way. If your fine with the chair finishes being rougher you don’t need to sand it at all.
Finally, the pink back was whitewashed with thinned white chalk paint.
The whitewashing helps match the chair with the partially whitewashed refurbished desk.
Once painted protect the chair finish with two coats of finishing wax.aaaaa
Reupholster the Chair Seat
The chair seat attaches to the chair with the simple screws we set aside for reassembly
I spent an hour removing the staples that were holding the material and the cushion to the plywood form. So many staples, it’s unreal and hard work because the bottom of the chair is solid wood.
The material I chose is a really cute simple cotton that matches the ironing board cover I made. The material is fun and perfect for the craft room, but its plain cotton and a bit thin to be used as upholstery. For extra strength, I cut a double layer of the material using the old upholstery fabric as a pattern.
I was a bit concerned about the corners of the plywood wearing a hole in the fabric. To alleviate this extra foam was added to the front corners to give the pretty fabric protection from the plywood.
I think the chair could be part of an old dining room set, The chair cushion is very hard and not overly comfortable. The chair seat needs softening. If your chair needs extra cushioning, just cut and add an extra layer of 1-inch foam using the plywood as a pattern.
Hold the foam corners in place and fold the material over the plywood. Using a staple gun staple the material into place.
Make sure not to cover the original screw holes in the plywood with the material.
Starting at one side place a few staples; then do the same on the opposite side.
Repeat this process for the other two sides. Once you are sure the material is the way you want it, add remaining staples as needed.
Reassemble the Chair
Your almost done. After the chair seat has the new fabric, attach it to the chair using the original screws, fit into the original screw holes.
This chair is exactly what I want for the new craft room. Its bright, the extra foam makes it comfortable and I am sure the arms are going to add comfort as well. Both the chair and the old feminine chalk paint desk are one of a kind pieces now, and so worth the time it took to redo them.
Have a wonderful week.