In April I took on a project that would later become my worst enemy.
Disgusting Gold Chair
Ben and I found it at Diversity Thrift. It claimed to be a club chair and seduced me with its soft curves and seemingly endless potential. Ben purchased it as a gift for me to makeover. At the time I was very excited, little did I know that what laid beneath its faded gold surface would smell of death and literally disintegrate into puffs of dust when I touched it...
But I was determined. I would dominate this chair. I would cleanse it of it's dirty past and make it fresh and new again! I would make it loveable and the perfect chair for my Ben to play Fifa in. Together we would be proud of what I had accomplished!
The fact that 60% of this chair was made out of cardboard should have given me the heads up to back away slowly.
But I pressed on.
So young, so naive.
So willing to spend a stupid amount of money to make something so ugly potentially beautiful.
I painted the legs and covered the CARDBOARD in brand new thick padding. This would be the most comfortable chair in all the land! ...right?
There were many things structurally wrong with this chair, that I tried to make up for with padding, always more padding! But that just made it impossible to secure the fabric. With all the padding there was no way to access the two tiny pieces of stable wood in the back of the chair. The fabric just laid there. It also didn't help that I reupholstered the chair in the wrong order.
After roughly 3 1/2 months of staring at my failed pile of fabric and staples, I finally let it go. At this point there was no way to fix it, I refused to donate something that would stab the buyer when they sat in it, so all it had left to do was make it's final journey to the local dump.
So what is the moral of this story? I think there are a couple, actually.
1) Know when to move on. Some things aren't worth the time, patience and money to refinish. When you see something in a chair like, I don't know, broken cardboard masking itself as back support...resign yourself to the fact that while yes, you lost a few bucks on the chair purchase, you didn't lose close to 20 hours of your time and over $100 in materials...
2) Smell your thrift store furniture before you buy it. I know that sounds weird, but reupholstering a chair is crazy expensive and you want to save money where you can. If a chair smells like a gymnastics mat, you're going to have to replace EVERYTHING from the padding to the piping, and that adds up fast.
3) If ever you start to feel an ounce of regret for throwing out your chair, take a look at the progress pictures you took. Think about how stupid and annoying that experience was, how your husband sat in it and it actually hurt him, how it sat in your family room covered in a large blanket and pillow for 3 months mocking you for giving up. Then write a blog about how stupid and annoying that chair was. Then you'll feel better and know that you are much smarter now ;)
Hi friends! Welcome to the blog! I'm Mandy and I'm an artist, blogger & founder of the "Artists to Know" interview series. Here you'll find photos of my latest art adventures, furniture makeover projects & advice from successful artists!
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