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My Craigslist doozy ...

Posted by mama_goose (My Page) on
Tue, Mar 18, 14 at 14:32

... or deal? I've been wanting to try painting an upholstered chair, ever since seeing one that shades_of_idaho did a few years back. I found this chair on my local Craigslist, along with what would prove to be a rather optimistic description:

"Nice chair---perfect for living room :) - $25"
 photo craigslistchairII.jpg
"Hello, I have a nice older pink chair. I'm not sure how old it is but it would be a great fixer upper or just leave it as is for the vintage look. I don't use it so I would like to find someone to put it to good use. It's a really comfy chair and it's also very pretty. I can deliver it for 10.00 extra."


It had been listed for a while, so I emailed and offered $20. I rec'd an immediate reply, then a phone call, accepting my offer. The seller was heading my direction, and offered to deliver it for nothing, if I would meet him at a location that was 5 minutes from my house. I was going to give him $5 for delivery, until I actually saw the chair. Ewww. Since it was only $20, and had 'good bones', I paid him and loaded it into my pick-up, but kept it in quarantine for a month, on my front porch. Here are a couple of pics of the filthy seat, and dog-chewed leg:

 photo 100_7820.jpg

 photo 100_7818-1.jpg

After finding cracker crumbs between the arm and seat, I felt better about the stains--I think (hope) they were food stains. I gave it a good vacuuming and scrubbing, and wrapped the arms and legs in plastic film, to protect them from paint:
 photo 100_7944.jpg

Here it is after one very thin coat of a mix of latex paint that was left over from my kitchen cabinets, fabric medium, and water. (Directions in the link.) The fabric absorbed the first two coats like a sponge, barely changing color:
 photo 100_7943.jpg

Finished, it looks and feels like the naugahyde that was popular in the 1960's. The texture is still visible, but more so in pics, because of the flash on the semi-gloss paint. I used some left-over stain to cover the scratches and dings in the wood, and I'm considering adding some brass tacks:
 photo 100_7962.jpg

 photo 100_7969.jpg

The upholstery didn't appear to be original, or of the best quality--I think it would be easy to replace, if I grow tired of the color. (Although at this point, I'd probably need a tin snips to remove it. ;) Has anyone repainted a painted chair?

I plan to use the chair for extra seating in the LR, when we have family gatherings. I had the paint and stain, so my only investment, other than the chair, was fabric medium, 3 8oz. bottles @ $5.00/each, from Hobby Lobby--total $35.00. The chair is very similar to a leather Hickory Chair (also a Craigslist find), that I paid $35.00 for several years ago. It was time-consuming, but I enjoyed this mini project. :)

Here is a link that might be useful: Blog with instructions.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: My Craigslist doozy ...

I am so impressed by your chairs!!!! Great job!

RE: My Craigslist doozy ...

Good Job!! I bet you felt so creative trying something new like that without worrying about destroying/ruining a higher priced piece.

I've wanted to try my hand at that ever since I saw Magnaverde's painted sofa project from several years ago.

RE: My Craigslist doozy ...

Say what!!??? Painted chair - looks good, but what are its sitting qualities? Does it feel hard and plastic, or stick against your skin on a hot day? Really, latex paint is actually vinyl isn't it so basically you've turned it into vinyl upholstery - why not!

RE: My Craigslist doozy ...

Thank you, cat_mom!

tuesday_2008, I remember magnaverde's pink couch. I started out in the Smaller Homes forum, so I found shades' wing chair first. The time-consuming part is waiting for the paint to dry between coats--everything else is easy. You should try it!

kashka_kat, it does feel like vinyl, very similar to auto, or boat, upholstery. Definitely not for a house with no AC. I recall that slow peeling away of sweaty limbs from my grandmother's Naugahyde couch, before scooting forward...less chafing that way. ;)

Oh, I just had a flashback of school bus seats!

RE: My Craigslist doozy ...


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