|I finished giving the wing chairs the slip!|
Everybody knows that paint and slipcovers are the easiest way to change and refresh what you already have. This is not unlike getting yourself a new outfit, painting your face and trying a new hairdo, but I digress.
I have had these monster wing chairs for over twenty years now, and when I first bought them they were teal. They were supposed to be Hunter Green, which was very popular at the time, but when they finally arrived three months after I ordered them they were disappointingly teal, a color I have never liked.
Here they are in all their brand-spanking new glory (hideous fabric, right?):
|I climbed a ladder to find this album --|
don't tell Sweet Husband.
Aside: I adore aqua and turquoise, which are really just lighter shades of blue-green, but I just plain don't like teal.
|This is when they were first done in the previous house.|
Photo by E. Lockridge from The Birmingham News.
I used to drape things all over them, trying to camouflage that color (and the fabric was just plain ugly) with throws, spreads, quilts, lots of pillows -- whatever. The fabric had a "hard" unpleasant hand, too. What was I thinking?
|I think this must be the updated version of the fusible quilt batting?|
...one day on TV well over ten years ago, I saw a method demonstrated for an alternative fix that was a cross between reupholstery and slipcovers. Reupholstery would have been very expensive, and although I have made some tailored slips with mixed success, for these particular chairs the process was daunting. So I thought why not?
I found the product at Hancock fabrics, and while there I ran across a bolt of toile on clearance for $5 a yard, and so I bought the whole bolt. There is a lot of waste with a pattern like toile because of having to match the design, called a repeat. On most toile, the repeat is large, maybe even 36 inches.
|fitting the new slips with quilt tacks|
The way the process worked required special batting which was coated with a heat-activated adhesive. First, you cut all the pieces to fit the chair and applied them with a quilt tacking gun. These chairs were BIG so it took quite a lot of batting, the better part of three rolls if I remember correctly. Then, you cut the sections of the fabric, and positioned those over the attached batting with the quilt tacks.
Last, you fired up your iron, and I actually don't remember if you used steam or not. I think maybe you didn't. At any rate, you ironed your chair all over, slowly and deliberately for what seemed like hours, which required turning that monster thing over and over in all directions. It took me a week to do each chair. Then the seams had to be turned in and set with fabric glue and pins, and that had to dry for a couple of days.
I was so tired of the whole project, although the chairs turned out fine, that I never even put on the trim over the seams as I had intended. We put the (previous) house on the market again for the 5th or 6th time, and I had no time to worry about trim any more.
The chairs have been extremely comfy and well-used over the years, and the toile fabric is nice and soft from use. However, the arms are starting to look very worn out. The soft batting and a more tactile fabric made all the difference in comfort.
Toile comes in and out of fashion, although for those who love it, it never goes away. Popular with devotees of Country French style, it mixes well with checks of various sizes and coordinating prints.
|The same Indigo denim on the bottom of the curtain was going to go on these chairs|
Then recently we moved those chairs back to the bedroom. I knew I had to do something, but I still was unwilling to fork over the cash to get a pro in here to do it. You can buy new chairs for what that costs, and besides I wanted these that are "broken in" to be in here for comfort.
|I think the slip for the ottoman is going to be small green checks|
The wheels began to turn, and I thought it might be kind of interesting to do a looser, less formal type of cover on what is essentially a classically formal style of chair.
Here is how it worked out. I am quite happy with it, although you more persnickety types probably wouldn't have it. I bought enough of this contemporary floral to do the fronts and over the arms, and I already had the solid apple green chintz on the back left over from a show house a long time ago.
|When everything is done, I am going to remove the white slip on the bench for a while.|
It's fabric goes with these other colors.
I have three more pieces -- two chairs and an ottoman -- in this room to slipcover and three pieces to paint before I show you the whole room. Plus, I will probably re-work some other lamps and make some new pillow covers and a waterfall spread... (It never ends) I will probably change the drape on the corona, too. Maybe I will be done with all this before Christmas.
|oops! just noticed the cord|
So, how do you like it? Too funky for you?
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