I recently finished a restoration project that has been in the queue for a few months.  It wasn’t even that big a job but I had put it off to the side several times and decided that it was time to get it off the list and into the finished column.

We have a dining room set that we haven’t used since I inherited my parents’ set two years ago.  I have had the old set in the basement because the chairs needed to be recovered but we want to find the set a new home so we can have the workspace and, hopefully, get a little cash.

The four chairs need to be updated.  They are drop seat chairs so fairly straight forward to recover.  I decided not to do a complete restoration on the set at this time but to leave it alone as it is in pretty good shape and I don’t want to take the time to redo the full setting.  In addition, the table has curved laminated edges and I don’t have the equipment or skills to take that on right now so I didn’t want to redo the chairs and risk not having a perfect match.  Instead, I wanted to simply update the look.

The first step was to remove the old seat covers.  Two were very badly worn, the others were not so bad and made good patterns for the new seats.

Chair seat open Chair seat

The wooden seats were all in good shape.  I had to sand the edges on two of them but otherwise basic seat was excellent.  I just had to had new stuffing (I used fibre fill).

chair samples

Sample covers. The one in the center is the original. The first one that I did was the leather-look finish on the left. My original intent was to try and make it look more like the original. For the second option, on the right, I tried a softer upholstered version.

I always like to do a sample to see how the material options will look and feel before completing the set.  In this case, I decided to go with a whole different look and chose the upholstered finish.

When the seats were covered, I finished the back with a dust cover.  I used fabric cloth from the hardware store.  I think that gives a finished look to the underside of the chair.

I am quite pleased with the final results – and very happy to have this project off the list.  Once I got down to it, the total time for the seats of the 4 chairs was about 3.5 hours.  That, of course, doesn’t count all the wait time.

chair finished

Have you a project you have meaning to finish?  Today is a good day to tackle the job or at least get a start.  What project will you be finishing next?