The Throne Chair – DIY Reupholstered Chair Makeover – And Being Brave


Whew, that’s quite a title, isn’t it?  I’ve been working the past couple weeks on this chair that actually kind of scared me at first.  It came into my life a year and a half ago when I saw it for sale on Facebook (it reminds me of a throne and it was pretty much love at first sight) and I agreed to meet the seller at her workplace.  Here’s the ad, with her name and location blocked out:

DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage

$20 is a steal for that, right?  And the description only read “Beautiful chair.”  When I met the seller, she informed me that she had bought the chair to redo and never got around to it.  It didn’t take me too long to figure out why!  

Before we get any further, I have exciting news!  A few of my creative blogging friends and I have teamed up to bring you the “Furniture Fixer Uppers” – once a month we’re getting together to share our latest furniture makeovers and tutorials to inspire you.  Be sure to stick around till the very end of this post to see their projects!

I knew the seat was messed up, and it wasn’t safe to sit on – but I didn’t know how bad it really was until I finally started taking it all apart…

DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage

The padding in the seat had almost completely fallen apart, and there were only crumbles left in the seat back as well.  I had my work cut out for me.

Last June I completed my first “major” reupholstery project (this chair) – but the innards were all in perfect shape.  Now, after finishing this chair, I have a much better understanding of what really happens in a major reupholstery project!

*This post contains some affiliate links, at no extra cost to you, so you can easily find the same or similar products that I’ve used.

First up, a trip to Hobby Lobby:

  • New poly foam padding (2 inches thick, I had to buy a giant roll because the seat is so wide)
  • New batting (cotton, because it lasts longer than polyester)
  • New fabric (after changing my mind several times, and buying 2 yards of a different fabric, I stumbled on a clearance curtain for $6 that was perfect!)

DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage

Now that I had some of my necessities, I chose Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Country Grey and painted the frame of the chair, then applied a General Finishes topcoat.

I loosely followed some of the steps in this tutorial for reconstructing the seat.

First, burlap…

DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage

Then I cut the foam and the batting…

DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage

And finally I cut the fabric, being careful to keep the pattern straight.  (After that last reupholstered chair I did, I swore I wouldn’t choose a pattern that had to be perfectly aligned the next time… Ha.Ha.)

DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage

After everything was cut, I stapled the batting over the foam.

DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage

My hands were red and hurting super bad after all the stapling I’d done so far, and the stapler was starting to give me fits anyway, so it was time to change things up!   I got brave.

Now, not all of you guys will see the bravery here, and that’s ok.  But some of you are probably like I was and might freak out at the thought of using a fancy stapler attached to an air compressor.  We’ve had this thing since last year when Mr. GITG bought a power tool package deal, and he’s been harping on me to try it out for too long.   So I finally gave in.

DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage

Just like magic, my hands were saved.  It. Is. Amazing.  (insert heart-eyed emoji here) And it’s actually super easy to use!   Click Here to learn more about this kind of stapler.  Just don’t tell Mr. GITG he was right, ok?  😉

Next I stapled the very back panel of fabric onto the chair.  I always try to cut the piece large and then trim it down later.  When you have a pattern to line up straight, it helps to staple the top and bottom first, and then use that as a guide for the rest.  I do a few on one side, and then switch to the other side, back and forth to keep things as even as possible.

DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage

I put the back foam in place (just foam, no batting this time) and then stapled the front panel on.

DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage

Remember to fold the unfinished edge underneath before you staple.

DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage

I put several staples at the end of each section.

DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage

For the arms, I put a few staples right into the foam to keep it in place…

DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage

Then I stapled the top and bottom first (to line up the pattern), while continuing to tuck the unfinished edges underneath and going back and forth from one side to the other.

DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage

Finally, at the end of this project that seemed like it might never end…

It was time to hide all those ugly staples with gimp trim and a hot glue gun.  This is toffee gimp trim that I found Here on Amazon.

DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage

Wow, you guys.  That was an epically long tutorial but I sincerely hope it inspires you to try a big reupholstery project or to get brave and try out a tool that you’ve been dreading!

Here’s how she looks now:

DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage

Oh my.  It is light years from where it started!  I still get amazed sometimes at the power of paint and new fabric (and some blood, sweat, and tears, Ha!).

I’m so glad to finally have this reupholstered chair makeover checked off my list and out of my stash.  Only 342 more pieces to go…

DIY Reupholstered chair makeover with Chalk Paint and clearance curtain as fabric - Girl in the Garage

Click here for my bonus printable Cheat Sheet:  The best types of furniture to buy to flip and make a profit (and which kinds to avoid!)

Hey there, don’t leave yet!  Remember I told you that today’s a special day – you get 4 more fantastic furniture makeovers from my friends to inspire you.

furniture-fixer-uppers

These are the Before photos – click the links underneath to see the Afters and to read the full tutorial.

Furniture Fixer Uppers - Jan 2017

1. Just the Woods

2. The Interior Frugalista

3. Petticoat Junktion

4. Confessions of a Serial DIYer

I’d love to know what kind of tool or technique that you were scared to try but afterward you felt proud and empowered.  Kudos to you for being brave!

Jen


 photo just-paint-it-ad-border-wide_zpsmka7ckdc.jpg

44 Comments on The Throne Chair – DIY Reupholstered Chair Makeover – And Being Brave

  1. Donna Lee
    January 26, 2017 at 6:02 am (1 month ago)

    love the chair, I’m a blue person so just love the blue and white, so fresh

    Reply
    • Jen
      January 31, 2017 at 11:13 pm (4 weeks ago)

      Thank you Donna, I’m always drawn to blue too. 🙂

      Reply
  2. Tina Matteson
    January 26, 2017 at 7:07 am (1 month ago)

    This is such a gorgeous makeover. And you make it look so easy!

    Reply
  3. kandice
    January 26, 2017 at 7:35 am (1 month ago)

    You must have the patience of a saint! I would be terrified to tackle a chair like that. It looks amazing now! love it

    Reply
    • Jen
      January 31, 2017 at 11:12 pm (4 weeks ago)

      Thanks so much, Kandice! <3

      Reply
  4. vicki
    January 26, 2017 at 7:35 am (1 month ago)

    Absolutely Lovely!!

    Reply
  5. Marie from The Interior Frugalista
    January 26, 2017 at 8:33 am (1 month ago)

    Girl, once you go power you never go back! It does the job so much quicker too. Jen, your chair is absolutely beautiful! Love the fabric and gimp colors paired with the country gray paint color. Excellent easy to follow tutorial too.

    Reply
    • Jen
      January 31, 2017 at 11:08 pm (4 weeks ago)

      Aww, thanks Marie! I definitely need to try more power tools once it gets warm out again.

      Reply
  6. Linda
    January 26, 2017 at 8:51 am (1 month ago)

    I bought 2 similar chairs from an on-line auction and they sit in my garage because I’ve been so afraid of how much work they will be…but now I’m totally inspired by your wonderful instructions and have decided to keep them and transform them just like you did! Thank you!

    Reply
    • Jen
      January 31, 2017 at 11:07 pm (4 weeks ago)

      Go Linda, you can do it!!

      Reply
    • Jen
      January 31, 2017 at 11:06 pm (4 weeks ago)

      Thanks Christy! Haha, so true… I’m in awe of your upholstery skills!

      Reply
  7. Diane
    January 26, 2017 at 9:24 am (1 month ago)

    Beautiful chair. Well done job! Great tutorial. I just may try myself!

    Reply
    • Jen
      January 31, 2017 at 11:03 pm (4 weeks ago)

      Thank you, Kathy. Upholstery does take a lot of patience – that’s why I can only do this kind of project once in a while. Lol

      Reply
  8. Karen Marie Kedzuch
    January 26, 2017 at 11:25 am (1 month ago)

    Jen,
    I love it! As a fellow upholstery girl I know from experience what you have accomplished. Fabulous!

    Reply
    • Jen
      January 31, 2017 at 10:56 pm (4 weeks ago)

      Thanks so much, Karen Marie! Upholstery can be a beast for sure!

      Reply
  9. Elaine
    January 26, 2017 at 11:33 am (1 month ago)

    Fantastic result – it looks stunning.

    Reply
  10. Jan Cole
    January 26, 2017 at 12:11 pm (1 month ago)

    This is an amazing job! I’ve only done a stool or two. I read the entire blog and your pictures are spot on too! I live in a small apartment & plan on doing some painting of 4 antique dining chairs. I don’t have a garage or room very large, but I do have my kitchen tile floor. Do you think I can do it in this space? I have refinished several big pieces in my garage (before I moved) but am a little frighted to try it inside my apartment! I follow all of the wonderful DYI women!

    Reply
    • Jen
      January 31, 2017 at 10:55 pm (4 weeks ago)

      Hi Jan, thank you! You can definitely still do projects in your apartment – just use drop cloths to contain the mess. 🙂 I’ve worked on projects in my kitchen many times when it’s been too cold to work in the garage.

      Reply
  11. Marcie Lovett
    January 26, 2017 at 12:14 pm (1 month ago)

    Gorgeous! I can’t imagine trying that, but you make it look less intimidating.

    Reply
  12. Robyn Gist
    January 26, 2017 at 12:24 pm (1 month ago)

    Amazing! U did a BEAUTIFUL job!!!! Love it!!!

    Reply
  13. Hope
    January 26, 2017 at 1:18 pm (1 month ago)

    Wow this is gorgeous now! Excellent work!

    Reply
    • Jen
      January 31, 2017 at 10:50 pm (4 weeks ago)

      Thanks so much, my friend! xo

      Reply
  14. Rose L.
    January 26, 2017 at 3:38 pm (1 month ago)

    oH SO GORGEOUS! I wish you lived close to me as I cannot do it myself with my disability. You did wonders with this chair.

    Reply
    • Jen
      January 31, 2017 at 10:49 pm (4 weeks ago)

      Thank you so much, Rose!

      Reply
  15. Bonnie
    January 26, 2017 at 4:05 pm (1 month ago)

    That chair is now so beautiful. I really love the paint finish that you chose and the material is perfect.

    Reply
  16. Julie
    January 26, 2017 at 8:46 pm (1 month ago)

    Great job ! Love the curtain fabric too! I tackled a chair recently too in blue and white. You can see mine on my business face book page.

    Reply
    • Jen
      January 31, 2017 at 10:48 pm (4 weeks ago)

      Thanks so much, Julie! I got lucky finding that fabric 🙂

      Reply
  17. Kim
    January 26, 2017 at 9:51 pm (1 month ago)

    Wow! What an incredible transformation!

    I love the fabric you chose!

    Reply
    • Jen
      January 31, 2017 at 10:48 pm (4 weeks ago)

      Thanks so much, Kim! 🙂

      Reply
  18. Zovesta
    January 26, 2017 at 10:13 pm (1 month ago)

    Oh my goodness!! I can’t believe it. It looks fabulous!! And I never would have figured out how to put it back together – cutting a new plywood seat and stapling stuff to that is the extent of my reupholstery fixing know-how. 😉 It looks perfect! I almost feel like you should brag to the person you got it from. 😉

    Reply
    • Jen
      January 31, 2017 at 10:46 pm (4 weeks ago)

      Thanks so much, Zovesta! That’s my favorite kind of chair makeover – new seat and fabric 😉

      Reply
  19. Eliz~
    January 27, 2017 at 1:00 am (1 month ago)

    Stunning!! You really worked hard on this.

    Reply
    • Jen
      January 31, 2017 at 10:40 pm (4 weeks ago)

      Thank you, Eliz! Sometimes I get a little crazy and decide to go for the difficult makeovers… I think I’ll go easy for a while now. Lol

      Reply
  20. Paula
    January 27, 2017 at 5:28 am (1 month ago)

    Your chair looks amazing, Jen!! You’ve made upholstery look like something I can actually do. Good for you for trying that new tool.

    Are you keeping this or will it go to your shop?

    Reply
    • Jen
      January 31, 2017 at 10:38 pm (4 weeks ago)

      Thanks so much, Paula! 🙂 I might actually try to sell this one on a local upscale website before taking it to my booth.

      Reply
  21. Linda
    January 27, 2017 at 5:05 pm (1 month ago)

    Well, NOW it is a BEAUTIFUL CHAIR!! Outstanding job.

    I’m 73 and I just bought the same Porter Cable tool package and I absolutely LOVE the stapler. What a difference it makes, right? I still have another chair to tackle reupholstering and painting. Hope I can do as good a job as you have done.

    Reply
    • Jen
      January 31, 2017 at 10:34 pm (4 weeks ago)

      Linda, this is my favorite comment. You rock! (and I feel totally silly now that I was scared to use the stapler!) 😉

      Reply
  22. Pam
    January 29, 2017 at 12:37 pm (4 weeks ago)

    Absolutely stunning. I bought an older chair to refinish and it sat in my house for a long time. When I moved, I sold it as I realized I would never redo it. Had your tutorial existed back then, I may have been brave enough to try it. I laid wood flooring last year and put off re-installing my baseboards for a couple of weeks. I was scared of the finishing gun that came with my air compressor and had never used that kind of tool before. But I knew I could not drive a nail in straight to save my life. After watching a really good video on it a few times and reading the manual a few times, I did a few trial runs on some scrap 2×4 pieces. Took me less than 20 minutes to do the bedroom and hallway. It also came with a brad nailer and staple gun so I can see me using those in the future. It was amazing how easy it made the job.

    Reply
    • Jen
      January 31, 2017 at 10:27 pm (4 weeks ago)

      Pam, that is awesome! Good for you!! (And I know if you find another chair to redo, you’ll make it beautiful!)

      Reply
  23. anna
    February 17, 2017 at 7:26 am (1 week ago)

    well done, you have really made a nice job of this. it would have been awful to throw such an elegant chair away..bravo

    Reply

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