Lia Griffith - handcraft your life on Facebook

Before and After: Dining Room Chairs

DiningRoomChairUpcycles Tomorrow I will be touring my dining room in my little craftsman house. To finish up the room just in time for the tour, I just updated the dining room chairs I have been collecting and thought it would be fun to show the before and after with you. The truth is, I have far to many chairs. I love chairs. I could have a party at my home for 51 people and each could have a seat (indoors and outside). Okay, that is embarrassing. When I was in my 20’s I collected mini chairs and now it seems I collect life size chairs. To support my chair obsession, I had been looking for a vintage Chippendale chair for quite a while, scouring Craigslist weekly to find a great deal. I am inspired by the eclectic style of Jonathan Adler but his Chippendale chairs are clearly out of my budget at this time. One fine Saturday morning I found not one, but four being sold on Craigslist for far less than one of Jonathan’s newer versions. These are vintage 60’s chairs that are metal and I was stoked! Score! The other chair is from a full set that was gifted to me, because you know. . . I might need some chairs. As oakie (I despise oak furniture) and out of date as they are, I loved how comfortable and solid they felt so I challenged myself to make them fabulous. So I added the two captain chairs to my four metal side chairs and combined them with my modern recycled dining room table, which you will see tomorrow. I then painted the captain chairs in the mix of Arles and English Yellow Chalk Paint® from Annie Sloan and used a clear wax for a buttery finish. The Chippendale chairs had already been painted from white to this dark grey by the previous owners. The look went well with my room so I simply replaced the fabric on the seats to a grey and yellow ikat in linen. I am loving the look of both. . . together. . . mismatched and interesting. I am excited to share the complete room with you tomorrow. Cheers! ~ Lia

Chair Makeover ChairMakeovers

  1. I love the ikat print on the chairs and would love to use it on my valances in my bedroom, what brand and name of fabric is this?

    • I bought that at my local fabric store and just spent a while searching to see if I could find an online source. No luck. I will look again when I am at the fabric store this weekend.

  2. Gorgeous chairs! You have such a warm, lovely, inviting blog! Stopping by after the PNW Blogger meet-up yesterday :D

  3. These chairs are really great. You just transformed these chairs into new chairs of different kind.

  4. Hi Lia, I really love the buttery colour you’ve achieved here. How did you mix the two Annie Sloan paints? In equal amounts, or did you do a coat in each colour?
    Thank you for your beautiful and helpful posts.

    • Thanks Danja! I took a full can of both colors and mixed them in a larger container, so equal parts fully mixed. The English Yellow is very tangy and almost green. The Arles is quite powdery in color. Together they are perfect!

  5. I love both chairs and love the idea of having different chairs at the table. But I especially loved your description of “…and used a clear wax for a buttery finish.” I believe I see some Yellow Chalk paint in my future! That color just makes me smile.

  6. Love the look of these chairs. I’m hating everything about my house right now! It’s too matched. Before I started following your blog, I thought my house was pretty nice, but now I’m wishing I could start all over with found items that I make my own instead of the purchased, perfect pieces that I own! Mind you, I only buy furniture that I really love, but the result is a showroom perfect room rather than a room that evolved over time. Hmmmm – maybe time for a re-do. I think I’ll start with one room at a time and maybe re-purpose those pieces I really like and remove the rest to make room for new-old items. Husband will flip!! But please keep showing me the way. I really enjoy following your blog.

    • Oh NO!!! Don’t hate your house. I would be buying everything new if I had the funds to do so, but instead I have to get crafty. Which I love, but I also drool over the West Elm store weekely. :-) There are ways to add your own personal touches to your rooms without starting over. I will bet you have some fabulous pieces. Start by adding in some nature.

  7. Love your chairs. The vintage one, can’t think of name of style right now, having a big senior moment. Love the color you put on it, what a huge difference in how that style looks now, so much more “today”.
    Did you like the IKAT patterns when they first came out? I didn’t at all but am coming to love them now. Hobby Lobby has several in a good strong cotton and one on burlap. I’ll have to be getting some of that. Just takes me a while to get used to things I guess. Your newly covered seat on the metal bamboo looking chair is great, looks perfect with the chair.
    Will look forward to seeing how your dining room looks in next post.
    Lucky you having a Craftsman home, I love those. Does yours have incredible built in’s in your dining room? Happy days ahead Lia.

    • The metal chairs are the vintage and are called Chippendale. The wooden ones are 70-80’s era. Some call that vintage, but I just laugh when they do. I don’t know what style they call that one. The paint really does help bring it into now. I have loved ikat all along. It has a tribal vibe, yet is used in such elegant ways. You know I am all about that. :-)

  8. Neat! I’m in the middle of hunting for dining chairs myself (we have far too few chairs in this house, and no chairs for our new dining table!). I’m expecting to get some old wooden ones on Craigslist this weekend, that I’ll need to paint. So I’d love to hear any more specifics on how you did yours. Was sanding/varnish-stripping needed? And what wax did you use…any special method of applying it?
    Thanks for your ever-helpful projects and information!

    • Hi Krystal. I am a huge fan of Annie Sloan paint. I have a video tutorial for a dark piece up in my video menu. It explains why this paint is to great. The only thing different on these chairs is that I used only the clear wax and no dark wax. Check out the video and let me know if you have any other questions. :-)

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