Reupholstering Life

While I’ve only reupholstered one piece of furniture in my life, there’s something strangely therapeutic in it. I’m cleaaaaarly no expert – I mean, I’ve got a sewing machine but have yet to figure out what the heck I’ve done to jam it up and render it practically useless. (Note to self: Call Mom about that.) But, if it’s a simple enough project, it can be fun and, while time consuming, a good way to keep one’s hands busy…especially with a good movie on to watch while doing it.

The first chair that I did was a cheapy from Salvation Army. I purchased it while we were waiting for our current house to close, so I NEEDED a low-cost project to busy myself with. The lines were great; the original fabric…whoa. It was the texture of a shower curtain liner. Not a shower curtain. The liner. No exaggeration. Great for those with incontinence issues.

Anyhoo, the actual tearing out of the original fabric and staples took awhile…as did the final upholstery job. But, what I ended up with was a cute, satin-esque, “vintage”-looking chair. The chair is on the right side of this awesome professional pic of Dave and I (taken by our wedding photog, Sarah Beck). Can’t see it great, but the whiteness worked unexpectedly well when we bought our black and white floor. I always wanted a couch in the kitchen, just like mentioned in old stories like Little Women, so in a small-ish space, an upholstered armchair works just fine!

This chair, due to unforeseen circumstances that I will discuss when I’m good ‘n ready and not a minute sooner (sob, sob), will be reupholstered yet again this summer. Besides, satin (although it was inexpensive – clearly not the “real stuff”) isn’t the most practical of fabrics for a kitchen, right?

To dip my toe back into the reupholstering pool, I recently re-carpeted our kitty scratching post. Seriously! The original one was $14 or so, and the carpet piece that I found was $1.99 – and will be used twice, with some leftover. Hey, when you find something that both the little guys will adhere to, you don’t want to move their cheese too much. New carpeting was just the trick. Here’s the play-by-play:

Beardslee, getting an A+ in demonstrating the finer points of scratching a post.

 …and suddenly being struck by the debilitating shyness that so frequently consumes him.

Winston, growing suspicious of why I might be taking pictures of the scratching post.
Smart lil’ guy.

 It was wrecked.

The tools. Carpet. Scissors. Pliers. Staple “gun” (not really a gun…probably the wrong term). Safety blade I ended up using to get most of the original carpeting off.

Luckily, the carpet was quite cheap and the thick backing came off easily.

Cutting the rug…exciting stuff.

 The empty “post”. ie Very thick cardboard.

A few minutes of stapling, and here’s the finished product. Proud to say the boys haven’t torn out any staples yet!

No matter how hard they may try…

So, as a little project (can be called a summer project…or not, since I may get at least one finished before the summer), I’ve picked up several pieces to reupholster. One, an ottoman I’ve been DYING to use in the living room, I got for around $20 at a tag sale sort of place. The other two items, an armchair (with only the seat to reupholster – it’s still in the car, so no pics of that available currently) and a bench, I got for just under $13 TOTAL at Salvation Army. After shelling out around $50 on new batting and fabric (still need to get some paint, but I’ll have to match it), you can average each piece to costing just shy of $28. Not too shabby – although I’m sure I’ll show favoritism to the cheapest pieces. No lie.

Here’s where the decision-making lies… I’m going to ponder over the choices and will let you know, or, if I have a really hard time deciding, I’ll show you way better pictures (including that pesky armchair and a broader shot of the now-green ottoman) and take your advice! As it is, here’s a sneak preview:

The fabric I’m deciding between for the chair and ottoman…

The boys christening their new toys. “You got deef for uf, right??” Actually, that’s partly true.
Boo pondering my third fabric choice. This one, I KNOW I’m going to use on the bench he has so ceremoniously dubbed his throne. He’d better like it!

Yeah, that throne. In rough shape, but lots of potential.
(The bench, not Beardslee! He’s doing just fine…well, except for his allergies and ear issues…)

You can at least see a side-by-side comparison of each fabric on the ottoman. Anything’s better than the green! I’ll gladly take suggestions now, but without getting into the color schemes in each room (clearly, I’ve got a brown thing goin’ on), it’s hard to get TOO into it.