Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Recovering cushions

There are things I plan to do "someday" and then I put them off for ages.  These are things that I'm not totally familiar with or only have a vague notion of how to do them, and uncertainty/fear paralyzes me.  Then, I finally do them and I kick myself for not having done them years earlier because they were so frickin' easy.

Recovering cushions on chairs was one of those things.

We bought some furniture from a neighbor who was moving away last summer, and it included a desk set with a cushioned chair.  The fabric wasn't terrible, but it was a bit faded and was nothing special.  We have been on a big home improvement kick the past few weeks (tearing down miles and miles of wallpaper and actually painting rather than just whining about how ugly the walls are), and I was suddenly inspired to tear the seat of the desk chair off and try my hand at recovering the cushion.  It turned out great!

No, I didn't take a "before" photo because I had no idea how it would work out.  I also didn't take a gorgeous beauty shot (like, without the tools and crap in the background) because I am lazy.  I just helped finish creating the elementary school yearbook (yet another reason the blog and sewing in general has been on hiatus, since all my creative energy has been poured into that instead) and I'm kind of taking a break from photography and photo editing.  Cell phone pics will do the job.

I got that fabric from an awesome fabric stash that I inherited from Corey's grandmother when she had to downsize.  It's a nice heavy home decor fabric.  I used Corey's heavy duty stapler and fell in love with it.  (He may never get it back -- kind of like his big metal l-shaped woodworking ruler that I have absorbed into my sewing tools collection.  And the retractable tape measure I cut up without his permission.  Sorry, honey.)

We also were the happy recipients of some furniture from Granny's condo, including a hilariously awesome chair with lion's heads on the arms.  The fabric on that cushion was old and faded, but I was nervous about recovering that cushion because it also had piping.  Turns out that was actually not a problem at all!

The fabric looks way more royal blue than it looks in real life.  It's really more of a dark slate gray/blue and beige stripe.  The piping was actually just stapled on rather than sewn into the cover.  All I had to do was tear apart the old piping and repurpose the cord inside to make some new stuff.  I have made my own piping before a couple of times and it's really a simple process.  The hardest part is cutting the darn fabric on the bias, but I used a great big square clear ruler (another hand-me-downfrom Granny!) that has diagonal guides on it that I could match up with the stripes.  Easy peasy.

The fabric is also from Granny's stash.  The chair is sitting next to a table and stools (also from Granny!) that she had covered with the same fabric.  Luckily, there was plenty left over for the seat of the lion head chair )as we have been calling it).  Now it's all matchy matchy!

Rocky the cat's new favorite place is under the stools.  I totally don't blame him.

Next up, I'm going to try to recover the cushion of the old rocking chair in my bedroom!