Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Dining Chairs with Potential

Dining chairs take quite a bit of abuse in our house.  Years ago, before kids, I purchased a set of queen anne style antique english chairs which I love.  I personally believe in using antiques and not just having them around to collect dust....but...given the current season of our lives, if we continue to use these chairs for everyday....they will be destroyed.  So, I decided to scatter them about our house where they would be used in much lighter way and search for an affordable, sturdy option that would hold up to our brood.

For our purposes we don't need museum quality furniture here.  These new chairs have 3 requirements.  1) Handle abuse for 'x' amount of years of having small children
2) Look good
3) Not cost a fortune

Not asking for too much right?? ;)

The first requirement is the biggest.  Kids are hard on furniture...there is just no way around it.  I know these chairs are going to get dirty.  I know they are going to get scratched and probably covered in spaghetti sauce or some other staining compound more than once.  :)  And while it is my goal to teach my children to respect and take care of the things they have, I do not want to be stressed 3 meals a day, haha.  

My other challenge stems from having our only dining area located in the kitchen.   For this reason, I would like these chairs to look fairly nice for occasions, no matter how few and far between, when this room takes on a more formal role.  In my opinion, you can't beat a good upholstered chair and for this room I think an upholstered chair would add a lot of warmth to a room filled with primarily wood tones.  But kids and upholstery in the kitchen?? Yikes!  Without a doubt not as wipeable as a wood chair, and definitely not a great option for everyone...but I have a few solutions that will help make upholstered chairs manageable for us.

The best chair I found for the job was this one...

I came across this one on overstock.  I liked the white, hated the upholstery (easy fix), and the reviews were good enough that I took a chance.  The pricepoint, while certainly not free, was good enough that I won't loose sleep over it when/if my kids destroy these chairs and they need to be replaced down the road.  Maybe they will be able to eat spaghetti without leaving evidence by then?? haha  

The key to these chairs is in their reupholstery potential.  This is a fairly easy reupholstry job.  Very similar in difficulty to the chairs I reupholstered for my living room.  Instead of a patterned fabric, however, my plan is to go with a linen from Grey Line Linen.  I can't remember where I first heard of this company, probably Jenny from the Little Green Notebook, but they are a fantastic source for linen. Their color range is huge and the price point is excellent!  

Here is what I went with for the body of the new upholstery...  

I'm not sure how accurate the pic of this color is, but think of a natural burlap/jute color.

I found a few yards of this fabric stripe in my "fabric collection", haha, which will be used for the back of the chair.  

A little sidenote about this stripe fabric...  I'm actually using the "wrong" side of this fabric.  The correct side of this stripe was just a little too strong...

So, I flipped it and it softened it just the right amount!

Instead of a double-welt like was previously used, I will be using this navy twill tape and antique brass nail heads.  Here's a little mock-up of how everything will look together!

Now the fun begins...the removal of the old to add the new!


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