This project has been on our list for nearly as long as I can remember. Or at least for a long time.
Back when we made the farmhouse table for the kitchen, almost exactly a year ago, I starting rounding up mismatched chairs from thrift stores, with the plan that eventually they’d all be painted the same color.
And, look, now they finally are!
The color is Martha Stewart’s “Hosta.” I think I’m happy with it. It’s not one of those colors that I fall in love with immediately (i.e. it’s no Newburg Green!) It’s a little more vibrant than I was really expecting, but, then again, that was sort of the point. The kitchen is all wood tones and beige and gray, in ways that are tricky to change…..so I wanted to add some color with the chairs. I also like that it’s nearly impossible to decide if they’re more green or more blue, in the same way it’s nearly impossible to decide if the Revere Pewter on the walls is gray or beige. Oh, and the other day Dave put one of our Ikea plates up against a chair and, upon seeing that they’re almost the same color, asked excitedly, “did we do this on purpose?!”
No. We didn’t. I hadn’t even thought about it at all until that moment.
So the chairs started out like this:
All of them are from thrift stores except for the white metal one from Overstock (we have a set of 4, kind of spread all over the house right now. One in the kitchen, one in Ari’s room, and two in the sunroom). We sanded them down lightly, then used the paint sprayer to prime them and put several light coats of paint on them. Then two coats of polyacrylic (one with the sprayer, and then Dave was kind of over the sprayer, so I brushed on the last coat).
That makes it all sound quick and easy, but this was a big and kind of frustrating job. This was our second time using our HomeRight Paint Sprayer; I talked about the first time, painting Milo and Gus’ beds, awhile back. Everything went really smoothly that time, so I’m not sure why we ran into more trouble with it this time around. It was drippier this time than last time, and the finish also came out kind of…..bumpy. Interestingly, before we painted these, I talked to the HomeRight rep at Haven, and she told me that the medium duty sprayer we bought is actually not the best one for small projects like painting furniture. She recommended their fine finish sprayer instead for such things. And I was all, “well, the beds turned out great!” But I guess we just got lucky. I think I might save the medium duty one for some exterior projects we need to do like sealing our fence and the swing set, and try out the fine finish sprayer next time we have furniture or cabinets to do (which is always).
So, anyway, while all this endless painting was going on, I was really worried the chairs were going to look just terrible when we finished. But they don’t! They’re not perfect, but once we got them back inside, out of the glaring, every-flaw-accentuating sunlight, they looked pretty decent. I’m hoping they’ll be here relatively temporarily anyway and that within a couple of years we’ll be able to make some bigger changes in here.
But for now I’m just happy we finally have matching chairs!
Oh! I nearly forgot! Two of the chairs were upholstered and needed to be redone. This made me very nervous, because the only other time we’d reupholstered chairs they didn’t turn out so hot. But that was with oilcloth, which I think was just kind of hard to work with. Or maybe we just did a terrible job. But, at any rate, things went swimmingly this time.
I followed this tutorial from The Chronicles of Home, and it was super quick and easy. I bought this fabric; I wanted something fun, but I felt like too colorful might be too much with the chair color, so I went for fun pattern in neutral colors. Birds are SUPER fun.
Important staple gun safety tip: when your (borrowed) staple gun tries to indicate to you with prominent arrows and markings in about three different places which end the staples come out of…..pay attention! Otherwise a staple might shoot across the room and land perilously close to your eight year old. Sorry, Gus.
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