…and I gave you a little peek at the seriously shart stained chairs that came with it.
Take a closer look.
I’ll give ya a dollar if you lick it.
The vinyl upholstery was in good shape, not counting the grime, so I figured with a really hardcore scrubbing, I could bring these babies back to life. Here’s one after two rounds of Tide Oxi, one round of Magic Eraser and another round with their combined goodness working together.
A decent improvement, but still not something I would want to put in my kitchen. I went ahead and scrubbed them all down and put them in the basement with the table and started searching everywhere for vintage retro dinette upholstery. I found some good options, but nothing that I couldn’t live without.
So I did something that would typically make me cringe – I painted the fabric.
Now, I’m not saying that painting fabric is wrong and I’m not slamming anyone who has done it, I’m just saying it’s not for me. The part about painted upholstery that bothers me is the stiffness it appears to give fabric, but vinyl is already pretty stiff since it’s made of plastic. I know that Rustoleum sticks to plastic with a good coat of Zinsser underneath so painting vinyl upholstery seemed like a good option.
I removed the seats and the seat backs,
(here’s the makers info for all of you retro fans)
and laid them out on a drop cloth and primed them with Zinsser 1-2-3.
Zinsser is awesome for so many reasons; it makes paint stick to almost anything, and it’s a primer and a sealer. I definitely needed the sealer because these seats look like they have molded in a few spots and I def don’t want that getting through.
After they were all primed, I went over them with Rustoleum in white semi-gloss so they kept a little bit of their sheen. Check out the test seat next to an unpainted, uncleaned chair:
The fine spray of the spray paint also helped me to keep that wonderful, subtle texture in the vinyl, without filling it with paint.
Here’s the whole set before:
And of course I had to accessorize the table with some retro/diner inspired schtuff…
Right after I finished these I found out that Rustoleum makes a spray paint for vinyl. But it’s been about 7 months since this was completed and we’ve done plenty of sitting and squirming in these chairs and they’ve held up great; I couldn’t be happier with them. It was a super easy solution for a very dirty problem and now they look fresh and clean!