How to Reupholster Kitchen Chairs

Want a quick kitchen update without breaking the bank? I’ve got a deal for you! Right now Joanne Fabric is offering 50% off select patterns, and we scored big time yesterday!

These are the kitchen chairs… before. They’re not the worst. They actually go very nicely in our kitchen.

My quarrel with the chairs was really the quality of fabric. EVERYTHING sticks to it and it’s impossible to keep clean. I have picked food and individual dog hairs off these chairs because this particular fabric is indubitably a descendant of Duct Tape. Even using the attachment on our Dyson vacuum would not so much as suck a single hair off this fabric. After years of battle, it was time for a update.

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Here’s the new fabric we picked up for $30 at Joanne Fabric. It was originally $60, but they were running a 50% off sale.

To get started, you’ll need to remove the seats from the chairs. I used a screw driver and this took about 5 mins total. Don’t worry about unscrewing the legs! Ignore the bolts in the corners of your chair. You’ll just need to unscrew the seat from the frame.

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Once you have the seat removed, place the new fabric and the seat upside down on a large flat surface. I figured out how much fabric I needed for each piece ahead of time.

I didn’t remove the existing fabric because other than annoying me, there was nothing wrong with it. No huge stains, or rips, and the cushions were all in excellent condition. I decided to avoid that mess and opted to cover it all. The fabric I chose was also thick enough that the underlying color would not show through.

Place the cushion upside-down on the fabric and estimate it’s position, and how much excess fabric you will need to be able to staple it securely to the bottom on the cushion. Once you’re confident you have enough fabric, cut this piece away, saving the remnant fabric for the other cushions.

I used a Stanley stapler and staples for the next part.

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You can pick up one of these from Home Depot for about $10. I had this in the garage from previous DIYs. It’s definitely worth the investment!

Pull up the first piece of fabric and staple it into position. Along the same side, continue to staple, but leave about 1.5 inches from the corners. I originally put about 4 staples on the bottom side before moving to the left. I went back and added more, but before I went staple crazy, I wanted to make sure it was crisp looking incase I needed to remove any staples and reposition the fabric.

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You’ll need to pull the fabric each time you staple and make sure it’s fitted tightly around the cushion. At this point, each side should be stapled, with the 4 corners still free to make pleats. The pleats are important because the’ll give you crisp corners.

Basically, you’re going to fold this like you’re securing all the Mexican goodness into a burrito. First, you’ll need to pull the corner of the fabric straight towards the center of the cushion and staple. After you staple, you’ll have two “wings” to either side of the corner. Take the right wing and fold it left. Then staple. Then take the left wing and fold it right. Then staple. Repeat this 3 more times on all the other corners!

I timed myself for your convenience! After I removed all the seats from the frames, reupholstering the seats took about 12 mins each.

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When you’re all finished, you can cut away the excess fabric. You could include an additional dust cover on the bottom on the cushion if you want. Since I didn’t remove mine, I left the one that was there.

I found the easiest way to reattach the seat to the frame was to place it upside-down on a flat surface. The frame lined up perfectly with the previous holes and it screwed back together very quickly. Once I got the frame on, You could barely see the excess fabric. You won’t see this anyway since it’s under the chair! But I felt better knowing that it was hardly visible anyway.

Here’s a side by side  in our dining room so you can see the difference. I stopped to take this mid-DIY to share on my Instagram because I was so pleased with the results!

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also, the dog toy….

I’m so happy with the new fabric! Take a look a the afters!

 

Guest Bedroom Update

This has been the SLOWEST DIY yet. Mainly because there’s no rush for this space. We’ve had a whopping total of 3 people stay over our house (in the 3 years we’ve been here) and they didn’t even stay in this room because I didn’t have queen sized sheets for this bed. ANYWAY. Here we are, like 400 days later, and I have sheets and a few days off from work. So we’re digging deep and making progress. In total this make over cost less than $200!

Here’s the room before:

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In case you missed it, 100% of our house was this color when we moved in. It’s like a putrid off white egg-shell. The camera and some natural light gave these walls the undeserved benefit of the doubt. First things first. PAINT. Holy Lord does some good Behr  paint go a long way. Pair that with a new hear board and we’re making some awesome progress. This paint color is Wheat Bread by Behr.

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Obviously I took this picture at the wrong time of day, but you can believe me when I tell you how much better it looks already. Also, that lampshade is a work in progress (one day it’ll be its own DIY, but that day is not today).

If you’re like me and you’re on a budget (which by the way is the #1 reason to DIY), you should accept all decor (and furniture) donations from family and friends. In ANY form. My awesome sister-in-law (Hi, Christina) bought two mirrors and they were both delivered damaged. She popped out the mirrors and gave me the frames. I’ve seen a ton of decor blogs that have gutless-frames spotlighting some beautiful and rustic farmhouse pieces. But I can’t bring myself to buy a brand new frame and toss the essence. So this was the perfect opportunity to try something new!

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The two antique keys (lets call it that because they’re super old) that I hung in the frame are from my great uncle’s house. They’re actually not as heavy as they look. They feel like they’re made of plastic, but they’re much more dense than the plastic we have today.

I did the same exact thing on the right sight of the bed. But I didn’t measure correctly *TEARS*. So I filled it with spackle, waited for it to dry, sanded the excess spackle off, and repainted. I always keep the excess gallons of paint after I paint a room, specifically for reasons like this! I keep the paint stacked in a corner in the basement. It doesn’t take up much room at all! By the way, take a look at that paint color!

Here’s the almost final result! I’m going to create a custom sign to fill the space over the headboard.

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In total, this update cost:

  • $60 for the headboard
  • $30 for paint
  • $100 for bedding

Remove Rust with Coke

COKE DOES WHAT?! Yeah, that was my thought exactly. I’ve seen a bunch of these DIY-short-videos that tell you to pour Coke or ketchup on metal, then remove it for a glorious new look. I’m skeptical when it comes to that kind of stuff because I feel like those people are in it for the views. As it turns out, it’s dead on accurate. Which is a little scary. But take a look at this!

My parents offered me their old counter stools when they upgraded. How could I turn down 4 free stools and the chance to do a DIY? No brainer. These stools won’t sit at our dining room table on the regular. They’ll stay in the basement until we have a party and need the extra seating. But, they still needed some serious cleaning.

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I removed the 4 support bars/foot rests from the bottom of each stool. They look in decent shape from far away, but take a look at this close up…

All the corners were rusted out. These stools lived at the beach for years and the salt air did a number on these frames. I’m not sure if these were originally brass and the rust ate away the color, or if it was originally silver and the rust made it turn this weird yellow brass color. Either way, the surface felt like sand paper. Basically, the rust had rust on it and it was gross to touch.

I put the frame in the sink and wrapped paper towels around the entire thing. Then I took a can of Coke and poured generously over the paper towel.

If you have a large storage container you don’t mind getting really dirty, you could probably just pour a 2L bottle over what you need to clean, but this works just as well. Let it sit for about 10 or so mins. The Coke will begin to break down the rust.

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When you’re ready, remove the paper towels. Here’s what the corner looked like after it soaked in the Coke, but before I scrubbed it with a billow pad. I scrubbed this corner with the same amount of pressure I use to scrub my dirty dishes.

and the after….

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I could not believe this is the same metal frame! The Coke removed all the rust. There’s permanent discoloration from years and rust, but the large rust spots are gone! The surface is so smooth.

Here’s another before and after rust spot!

I’ll probably never drink Coke again, but I’ll definitely use it as a cleaning solvent!