I am so excited about this project! I have had this salon chair for almost a year and have really been wanting to redo it to use as an outdoor piece, but wasn’t able to find the perfect fabric. When I heard about Creating with the Stars, a contest put on by East Coast Creative, my mind began racing and after consulting with my buddy Trisha at Black and White Obsession, I finally decided that this was the project that I wanted to enter.
I picked up this chair for a steal. Here it is before:
I thought it need some arm rests and did some Googling to see if I could find a similar chair to see what the arm rests looked like. This was all the info I had on it:
… And then I found it! Selling for $399! What the what?!
Score! Talk about an adrenaline rush! I almost shart myself!
Before I go any further, if you’re just scrolling through, this post resembles what most would call a tutorial. But, the chances of finding a similar chair for such a price is slim, so creating a tutorial for this would just be silly. However, I am going to share with you all of the steps I went through, from start to finish. I attempted a few things and used some new tools with this project that I have never tried before and I am hoping to inspire you to tackle those crazy-insane projects floating around in your head. “I don’t know how to do that” just isn’t a good reason not to create the chair of your dreams, especially in the Google Information Age. Sometimes you just gotta cross your fingers and go for it. Do it! LEAP!
Leap with me. Let’s go.
This little baby has four different levels: Super Uncomfy, Yeah That’s A Little Better, OOh Yeah Baby and Lather Me Up.
Check out a few more “before” pics:
Since I intended for this to end up as an outdoor lounge chair, I knew that this backing material would have to go. Either that or somehow weather/waterproofed.
First things first. I took it all apart, snapping pics as I went so I didn’t forget how it was put together.
Once I removed the chair back, I loved how the hardware looked and I wondered if I could replace it with plexiglas… Keeping that idea in mind, I moved on, taking the whole thing apart.
I had some fabric in mind, Tula Pink’s Parisville Fans Cotton Laminate, (which I also used on these chairs) but unfortunately it was discontinued. I searched for it anyway… for days. Then I found it on ZeetZeet.com and had it in my hands within a couple days. Game on! I removed all the hardware and spray painted the wood with Rustoleum Painter’s Touch 2x Ultra Cover in Satin Green Apple. It really looks more like a minty-pistachio, whatever the name, it matched the fabric.
After spray painting it, I noticed all the cracks in wood, not sure why I didn’t notice this before but I grabbed some Elmer’s Carpenter’s Wood Filler Max in Natural and filled in the cracks…
…and then repainted. While I was at Home Depot, I checked out the plexiglas. Ten bucks for a sheet that looked like it would do the trick. I brought it home and traced around the old back…
Next to the plexi at HD, I found a scoring blade, I grabbed that and took it home to try it out. Bust. All the sites I looked at on how to score plexi said to use a straight edge. But this has rounded corners so I decided to just score it free hand. I ended up going inside the lines and scratching it all up. This quickly became my test-plexi. Back to HD for another piece. I watched a couple other videos on cutting plexi and came across someone cutting it with a Dremel. That didn’t work for me either, it just melted the plastic. I knew I had something that I inherited from Mom called an All-In-One-Cutting Tool, but it was new in the box and I had never used it. No excuse. I Googled it and Bob Vila assured me it was super easy, so I went for it.
I clamped the plexi to my workbench and cut ‘er out, rotating the clamps and plexi as I went.
The edges were a bit jagged so I used my Dremel and sanding bit to smooth it out, leaving the plastic protective cover on so I didn’t muck it up before it got put on the chair.
Then I laid it on the chair, lined it up and drilled the holes for the screws.
I set that aside and moved to the arm rests. I had previously asked the Hubs to cut some wood for me for this part, but after using the All In One Cutting Tool, I knew I could do this on my own.
I traced around the arm and then used a mason jar as a stencil to it out. I traced that onto my wood and cut ’em out.
Then I clamped them together and used the same Dremel and sanding bit to smooth ’em out.
I lined them up on the arm rest to find where to drill the holes for the hardware to hold them on…
…the helpful guy in the hardware dept helped me find the right stuff.
Then I laid the wood on top of some 1″ scrap foam I had in my stash, traced ’em, cut ’em out…
… and hot glued ’em to the wood.
Then I wrapped it in some batting I had…
… and stapled it in place. I traced the arm rest onto the fabric, leaving room for a seam allowance, measured the sides of the arm rest all the way around and cut out a strip for the sides, sewed it all up, wrapped it around the arm rest, stapled it on and set it aside.
Back to the body of the chair:
The cardboard stabilizer in the chair was shot. I found an upholstery supply store near me and picked up this GIANT piece of… whatever this is called, for under $8 bucks!
I traced around it…
…and secured it with upholstery tacks.
Then I replaced the butt cushion, as well as the other cushion and wrapped the whole thing in batting.
On to the fabric; I laid out my old pieces and traced around each of them.
I even reused the piping from the old chair and made some matching piping.
I very carefully sewed all that together, using the old pieces as a guide.
I laid it on the chair, turned it over and pulled it taut while stapling.
I did the same for the chair back…
I knew this part needed to be nice and neat since it would be showing through the plexi, so I needed some piping or something to cover the staples. I ran to JoAnn and grabbed some that matched but got it home and didn’t like the way it looked, so I grabbed some cord from my stash and painted it using the paint leftover from my Bungee Beverage Koozie.
I let it dry and then hot glued it on. I stuck my screws into some of the leftover foam and spray painted them to match.
I also ordered some rubber feet from ebay (ten for 6 bucks) and spray painted those as well. Then it was all ready to put together. I couldn’t be happier with the end result and am completely amazed that it all turned out exactly as I imagined.
I had considered painting the frame. I have used Rustoleum’s Clean Metal Primer on my Jefferson’s Chair and it turned out great, but thought that might be too much for this gorgeous girl. I also found a tag under the chair when I was taking it apart…
Sept 16, 1971… Just a few months younger than the Jefferson’s Chair.
One more look at it before:
Yeah, so, now that it’s done, I don’t think I can let her live outside. I think I will put this chair directly next to my bed, and when I wake up in the morning, roll over onto it before actually getting up.
Okay, here’s where I need your help. I’ve entered this into the Creating with the Stars competition and I would be super stoked to be a part of this Monica and Jess are super awesome (they won this contest a few years ago and now they have their own show and are hosts of ABC/Disney’s show “Knock It Off” on The Live Well Network) and Martha Stewart is involved! I need your vote! Actually, it’s not even a vote, it’s a simple click. No registering, no leaving your name, nothin’, just a click. Go to http://eastcoastcreativeblog.com/2014/03/creating-stars-2014-contest-link.html and click on the pic of this chair, it’s number 195.
I hope this has inspired you to tackle something new and crazy. You can do it!
Leap, girl, LEAP!!!