DIY, Furniture, Home, Kitchen, Projects

Chair Project, Finally!

I used to see these chairs in the upstairs room at church when I would run the projection. When our church bought the building, it was bought with everything included down to the spatulas in the kitchen, and I think the upstairs room had just been used as storage. At the time I was using my grandparents’ 1950s colonial maple dining table and chairs, and those chairs were not very comfortable. I longed for sturdy kitchen chairs with flat seats, and I kept seeing these and thinking they would be perfect.

One day the assistant pastor let me know he needed to go through the stuff in the upstairs room and get rid of some things, and I asked him if I could buy the chairs. He said, “Five bucks each?” and I said, “Sold!” and so they came home with me. I’m pretty sure they still had the original fabric (probably from the 1920s or ’30s) on the seats, it was old and dirty and worn through around the edges. I’m not sure why, but I put the chairs in my kitchen and didn’t recover the seats for a couple of years, but finally I bought some cheap quilted muslin to cover them just to make them look better.

A little later on we bought this table for $20 to go with the chairs. Our kitchen doesn’t have a large space for dining and two chairs and a round table are just right.

Table and Cat

The plan for the table is to paint the bottom/legs the same color as the chairs, and strip and stain the top a dark walnut and then put some heavy-duty spar varnish on it to protect it from glass rings and spills. I think it is an antique oak table underneath the heavy brown paint, but I don’t want to go with the usual “orange” oak color. We have enough of that in the kitchen floors and countertop edging, as you can see. Hopefully that will change someday.

The chairs are too dinged up to refinish, so I plan to paint them a nice, clean off-white. The fabric store was having a good online sale and I was able to get a great deal on some stain-resistant outdoor fabric that goes with my kitchen’s green theme. It’s a little bright, but it should look good for years to come. The lighter-colored chairs and table legs will brighten up that side of the kitchen considerably.

I started this morning by removing the seats from the chairs and putting the screws in Ziploc bags. I numbered the chairs, the seats, and the bags of screws so I would know which seat and screws went to which chair. Sometimes it does matter which one goes to which!

You can see that the chair above has some veneer missing on the back. There are some other chunks missing around the edges here and there, so I got out the wood filler and filled the areas as best I could. I will go out and sand the chairs as soon as the wood filler has dried completely.

You can use a putty knife to apply wood filler.
But sometimes it just works better to use your fingers.

Stay tuned for the next episode in the chair saga!