Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Saving a folding chair: from the junkyard to the concert hall

Several years ago I discovered in our basement an old folding chair that was bound for the junkyard.  It was filthy, the black vinyl seat and backrest were torn and long ago "decorated" by one of the Mister's sons.   I brought the chair upstairs and dusted it off and since then it is the chair I sit on when I play my cello.  Despite its ugly exterior, this chair is just the right height and balance for me.  I think every musician has particular preferences.  This chair was just right with the exception that it was UGLY! 

I have a concert this coming weekend and I really am embarrassed to drag my ratty chair out in public.  The trouble is, the chairs we have in the concert hall are not quite right for playing a cello.  Necessity is the mother of invention, so last weekend I set about turning this junkyard bound chair into a concert hall chair.

No, it isn't a vintage replica.  And no, I didn't do anything particularly unique or creative.  But I did give it a new life.  Here is all I had to do:

First I removed the seat and back rest.  They were just screwed in, so that wasn't difficult.  Then I gave the chair frame several coats of white satin finish paint.  I think the above photo was taken just after the first coat of paint, but it is showing potential already.

After removing the vinyl and the foam, I replace the original foam with a new piece of memory foam.  VERY comfy!  The pressed wood seat board serves as my pattern.

I had this pretty blue Robert Kaufman fabric that I'd planned on making pillows with but decided this was a better use. 

The backrest was the next piece to go on.  I cut out some more memory foam.  Originally I thought I'd wrap the foam to the backside of the backrest as I did with the seat, but then I realized that, unlike the seat, it would have to fit in the outlined groove of the metal frame and wasn't going to allow for excess bulk.  I trimmed the foam down to fit the backrest.

Time to cut out some more fabric.  Then, with a staple gun, I attached the foam and fabric to the seat as well as to the back rest.  The Mister helped me hold and staple.  You need about four hands to keep everything lined up with no gaps or puckers.

And here is the finished chair.  I'm quite pleased with how it turned out.  It isn't a centerpiece in our home.  It's just the chair I sit on to play my cello.  But now it is comfortable and pretty.

Until next time,



I'm sharing at these parties:

Hickory Trail
Make the Scene Monday (at Alderberry Hill)
A Peek Into My Paradise
From the Farm Blog Hop
Share your Cup Thursday Have a Daily Cup 
A Stroll Thru Life  "Inspire me Tuesday"


  1. Oh wow how well does your chair look now .....your so clever and thank you for sharing this xx

  2. a wonderful job of bringing this chair up to date and making it very pretty!
    Love the memory foam idea

  3. How creative! Great transformation :)

  4. Hi there! Your chair is fabulous!
    Have a wonderful weekend.

  5. Wow, what a transformation! Newest follower from HickoryTrail

    I host a linky party every tuesday, would love for you to link up!

  6. I've been considering doing this same project. Now I know it can look great! Thanks for sharing how you did it. Have a great weekend. :-)
    Kim @ Curtain Queen

  7. Nice redo! I just recovered a torn stool. Not quite finished yet, but love how it turned out. Thank you for sharing it at What We Accomplished Wednesdays. Have a great weekend!


  8. Your chair is fabulous - a great transformation! I noticed on your profile that you're from Ontario, Canada...my dad is Canadian and I lived in Southampton, ONT for 8 years. My family is still there and it't always a joy to go back and visit them :)

    I am your newest follower and I look forward to visiting again.


  9. Thanks so much for sharing at A Peek Into My Paradise TGIF Link Party! I can't wait to see what you link up next week! I hope to see you at the (Not SO) Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop! http://apeekintomyparadise.blogspot.com/
    Have a terrific week!
    Hugs, Cathy

  10. your chair looks impressive..you have proved that any thing can be changed and can reuse it again..very good idea..i will be visiting your blog hereafter to know information like this..

    Home Furniture


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