Tags: chair

Simply Spray Series – Painting Upholstery – Week 1

I met with Emily, Simply Spray’s rep, a couple of weeks ago.  She had contacted me to see if I wanted to try their paints since a large section of my blog is devoted to painting upholstery.  I jumped on the opportunity because Simply Spray’s upholstery paint was something I considered when deciding what method I wanted to use to paint my chair.


I learned a great deal from our meeting and she generously offered samples while I offered to do some projects so I could let you guys know a little more about their paints!

We’ll be touching on things in this order.

✓Week 1 – This week – Introduction
Week 2 – Painting a pillow from the original chair and comparing it to the original
Week 3 – Painting pool umbrellas
Week 4 – Painting a patio furniture set
Week 5 – Conclusions

During these weeks, we’ll talk about the difference between Simply Spray and my method.  And, then I’ll sum it all up in the end.

How is my painted chair holding up after 15 months and two moves?


Great!  The fabric is a little softer on the seat than it was at first, from use.  But, nothing else has changed.  No fading, no staining clothing, nothing.  I sat in it almost daily at the rental (so for a few months) though now it’s back to very occasional use and sits in the master bedroom.

My second painted chair that lived in my craft room for a while held up equally as well.  I’m so glad the hours of work that were put into it were worth it!

It was recently purchased by a local photographer, Amber Lee Photography.  She sent some photos with it, which I adore!

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You can find Amber on Facebook as well.

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So you aren’t left hanging, I thought I’d at least share at least a couple of basics that I learned about Simply Spray.

- It’s more of a stain/ dye than a paint.  So, it will not turn things a lighter color than they currently are.  You can only go darker.  That also means it will not cover stains or patterns well.

- It is non-toxic and safe for children and pets.  That is much better than other paints.  In fact, it has no real smell.  I’m very sensitive to smells and didn’t react to this at all.

For more tips and thoughts on this spray paint for upholstery, stay tuned!  If you’ve used it, feel free to chime in!  Also, let me know how this information affects your projects.


Faux Bamboo Chairs. Another Craigslist Score!

First, I will announce the Shabby Apple giveaway winner:  #65.   Randi Sampson.  Congrats!

On to the post.

Faux Bamboo Chairs.  They are also referred to as the Chinese Chippendale or Chinoiserie, meaning Asian influence.

Famous furniture maker Thomas Chippendale spoke of them in his book The Gentleman and Cabinetmaker’s Director, way back in 1754.  The faux-bamboo elements and heavy lacquer were an immediate hit.

The popularity of the Chinese Chippendale remained steady through the 1930′s where it became part of the glamorous Hollywood Regency style.  It re-emerged again in the 1960′s, again retro chic and totally mod.  These chairs continue to be popular, adding style to virtually any room.

You saw them in green in the breakfast room design board for the new house that I posted this past week.

Well, I scored six plus a table for $300 off of Craigslist!  Pardon these photos as they are straight from Craigslist.  Once I get them in our new home in a few weeks, I’ll show them to you there.

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They are from 1976 and all original, made by Meadowcraft.  Love the fretwork.  It matches the coffee table I just scored off of Craigslist last week.

I plan to paint them green and to make some cushions in off white!  Oh, and the table.  I’m not sure what I’m going to do with it yet.  I may get a smaller table top and use it as an end table.

Let’s look at this design in rooms so we can see their full potential.






(Nate Berkus’ home below.)






Remember, I got a table and six chairs for $300.  Once I got home with them, I googled the going price of faux bamboo chippendale chairs.  They go for anywhere between $200-1300 EACH.

Some of my favorite places to get reproductions are Williams Sonoma Home, Jonathan Adler, Ethan Allen, Ballard Designs and Wisteria.

Below is a Jonathan Adler chair now selling for $495 each, though it is on sale.  It doesn’t say what material it’s made from.


And, this aluminum faux bamboo chippendale chair is selling for $1250!


No matter the worth, I love them and they were just what I was looking for.

What do you think of the chairs?  Have you used faux bamboo chairs in your home?  What is your best Craigslist find lately?


Quick update.  You can see them painted blue on the Tour page and or even more photos here.

And, in case you were wondering, I saw these on One King’s Lane.  Exact same chairs.  Look at the price (sale price).


A Reader’s Painted Chair

Here is another example of a painted chair that was painted based on my tutorial.  One of my readers sent photos and a link to her blog post about it.


She had two.  The pink is the before.  The green is the after!  Amazing, huh?

Here are both before.


What I enjoyed most about her post is the photos of the process.  She showed here how it almost looks like you ruined it after one coat.  It’s the scary part.


I bet she’s glad she kept going because they turned out great!


Let me know if you’ve painted a chair and be sure to check her blog post out!

Keep in mind, it’s always best to reupholster, especially if it’s seating that you like to cuddle in.  But, this is a great cost effective alternative if reupholstering is not in the cards or if it’s a low usage piece of furniture.


More Painted Chair Successes

Here are a few more successes from readers who used my painted upholstery tutorial.  The first is from Simply Blissful Photography.

After and then before.


Love the color she used!  Turned out so great!  She reminded me of the tip to put your paint in the fridge in between coats so that it doesn’t dry out.

The next was done in a very similar blue.  It’s from Bungalow.  She did report that the more worn areas of the fabric (the chair is 25 yrs old) didn’t take the paint as well.  So, that is something to remember.  you can notice those areas below.


The third chair is from Kathleen at Carrie Bradshaw Lied.


I like how some of the pattern is still showing through and how she did the bronze nail heads.

The last chair is from a reader without a blog, Kristin.


Remember, the after photos are first!  The second photo is the before.

Have you painted a chair?  Would you?

This method is best for seating that isn’t used a lot, but could offer color and style to a room.  The fabric does get stiffer, though it’s not horribly scratchy.  It’s not something to cuddle on at all, but it’s a great solution if you want to save money, yet update a piece of furniture.

Be sure to visit each indidual blog for more information on one of these chairs.


Two More Painted Chair Successes and Tips!

Here is a painted chair from a reader.  (She doesn’t have a blog.)

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She already owned this IKEA chair, but said it needed a facelift as the cream color wasn’t looking so fresh anymore.  So, she used leftover latex paint.  Bought textile Medium with a 50% off coupon and had a new looking chair for $2.50!

Ready for a second painted chair success?

“A Pinterest Addict” blogger painted a floral chair.  If you’re considering painting a chair, you’ll want to hear her tips!

Here is the before.


And the after.


But, check it out after two coats of latex paint.


It wasn’t looking the best.  What’d she do?  She switched to acrylic.  It had much more pigment.  Great tip!

She said it was a little scratchy.  What was her solution?  Not sanding since that can leave it looking worn.  It was to scrub it with fabric softener!

She wrote:

After four coats of paint, I thought the seats were way too scratchy. When I had tried to sand them down, the process left them looking very worn and gray, but much smoother. I was not going for a worn look, so I had to figure something else out. So, I poured some fabric softener in a bowl and dipped the scrub brush in it and scrubbed down the chairs. It worked! And as a bonus, the chairs smell heavenly. Love that Mrs. Meyers line of cleaners – they smell AMAZING!!

*Update 1/7/13:  Another reader said they tried the fabric softener and it made the chair sticky for weeks, maybe forever… so just a heads up.*

And, here is how the chair looks today.  She threw a throw blanket over the middle part to make it all the more comfy.


Looking great!   What a transformation.  Thank you for the tips!  Visit her blog to read more!

Have you taken the risk of painting a chair or sofa?


Reader Painted Two Wingback Chairs!

Bethany at Winkler Avenue painted not one but two wingback chairs using my tutorial.


Here they are before.  A nice textured cranberry fabric.


Amazing difference, huh?


She didn’t use latex, just acrylic paint, and did two layers.  She wrote a very thorough post on how it went.  So, be sure to check out her blog for all the nitty gritty details!

She may one day reupholster them, but for now, this was a nice $40 fix.  So, for the time being, it saved her $1200+.


What do you think?

I also stumbled across a fantastic article about painting upholstery written by Melissa Steele.  If you like doing a little extra research before embarking on a scary project, check it out.

In the article, she mentions Jacquard textile paint.  I have not used it, but would be curious if anyone has… is it any softer than our “painted canvas” feel that we get with this technique?


It appears they have a decent selection of colors, unlike the upholstery spray paints.  And, a number of art supply stores carry Jacquard products.  However, it’s more pricey than latex or acrylic that I recommend.


Here is a chair that Melissa painted with it.

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Have you painted a chair?  I’d love to see your chair projects!  Just email me from my contact page.


Painted Chair Fail – Michelle from Décor and the Dog

Let’s welcome Michelle today.  She is going to share about a project fail.  She tried painting a chair!  Didn’t go so well.  Michelle, take it away.


Have you read Kristy’s awesome painted upholstery tutorial?  Of course you have.


Were you inspired to tackle a painted upholstery project yourself?  I was. 

How hard could it be?  The steps seemed easy.  I loved the result.  I can totally do this.

I posted on my personal facebook status that I was painting a chair.  My best friend commented asking “Who did I think I was?  Thinking I could paint anything.”

I’m a blogger.  Have you see my other chair make-overs?  It couldn’t be harder than ripping out 1 million staples…


It was.

I purchased a $15 wingback from my local Salvation Army.  I grabbed Kristy’s tutorial and went to town.



After three coats, I had this hot mess of a chair….

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The chair was blotchy and pretty crusty.  It looked like a bad version of acid washed blue jeans.  Not exactly a hot design trend.

I’m not sure what went wrong.  The light grey paint may not have been the best idea with the dark chair.  I may not have used enough fabric medium.  All I know is that this chair is toast.

Slip cover anyone?

Be sure to stop by Decor and the Dog in the future and look for a slip cover tutorial.  Hopefully it has a happier ending!

Any other chair painting failures out there?  Maybe I’ll start a support group…

Thanks so much for sharing about your experience with the chair.  I kind of liked the before color.  Ha!  I’m so glad other people also have project fails.  I know I do!  Have you?   What was your biggest fail?


A Reader’s Painted Chair

A reader posted this painted chair on her blog, My House of Giggles.  She used my tutorial to paint it.  One coat of paint later and here it is.


Before and after.

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She is debating if to leave it with some of the orange showing through or do another coat.  What do you think?