Friday, July 8, 2011

Feeling Ever So Handy

Do you ever get in one of those phases where you look around your house and think, "Wow, everything needs to be different right now," and then go on a crazy cleaning/redecorating/rearranging binge? No? Just me? Oh. Well. Okay then.

I go through that phase about once every year (sometimes more often but on a smaller scale) and have been going through a pretty major one lately. Now, the way we have our house set up, in most rooms there are limited ways that I can actually rearrange the furniture at this point. That's usually my go-to method of scratching this particular itch, but it doesn't really work once you've mounted your television on the wall.

So instead I am trying to find all of the small things that really irritate me and fix (or change completely) those specific things. I just bought a bunch of new lamps (that actually match each other, for once) to replace the ones that have just completely stopped working or that I really don't like anymore. I ordered a new desk to make my daughter's work space (she was going to get the old desk I got from Salvation Army a few years ago, but it is pretty beat up and the drawers are no longer cooperating and I really didn't feel like trying to fix it). Once the new desk arrives and is put together, I will rearrange some of the smaller furniture and hopefully that will make a big enough difference that I will be satisfied.

We will, of course, need a chair to go with the new desk. The current desk is more of a landing place for living room junk and a storage space for my current(ish) yarn projects. The new desk will not be used for either of these purposes (I've also gotten some organizer containers to solve the problem that getting rid of that desk will create). We have a really nice antique chair that we got several years ago from my husband's grandparents but that really, really, doesn't go with anything in the house. I have been thinking for a while that it would be a perfect chair for my daughter if I could make myself refinish and reupholster it. I have finally decided that the time has come to actually do that.

But I figured I should probably start small and work my way up.

Shortly after my daughter was born, a friend of ours who owned a piano repair shop decided to retire. This resulted in us getting a pretty awesome piano for an even more awesome price (we just had to pay to have it moved from the shop to our home). We also got the bench that went with the piano.

What, erm...lovely fabric you have there.

It has seen better days.

Now, we chose the piano we did partly because the wood color went fairly well with what we have going on in our house, and the same goes for the bench. The fabric on the bench is another story entirely. Not to mention the fact that this thing is not new (we are unsure how old it is but I promise you that upholstery dates back to at least the seventies). The foam pad on the seat had gone crunchy. That's just not right. I had been thinking for quite some time that I needed to replace the pad and fabric on the bench.

So I did.

This past weekend I dragged my husband out to JoAnn's so we could pick out a good replacement fabric for the seat (we went with a nice dark blue corduroy, which I figure will hold up nicely to Baby Girl's attentions for at least a few years). I also picked up some staples for my shiny new staple gun (bought explicitly with reupholstery in mind!), and some new padding, of course.

It only took me about an hour to do (even with a toddler helping), and I am fairly pleased with the results. It is not perfect, but we don't need it to be.

The hardest part was cleaning up all of the yellow dust from the disintegrating foam pad. I swept twice, broke out the dust buster, and then ran a Swiffer over it, which still came out completely yellow. Yeesh.

Crunchy is not good.

Yellow. Dust. EVERYwhere.

But once I got the old fabric and pad off, and had removed any nails sticking out, I gave the whole bench a good polish, then slapped on a new pad and stapled on the new fabric, and voila!

That oil really did wonders for the thing.

Who doesn't love corduroy?

Baby Girl seems to approve as well.

This seat is much comfier!

Time to jam!

All in all, I am pretty proud of myself. Now I just have to keep the momentum going. One more test project before the chair--a lamp that my grandparents gave me that I can't bring myself to throw away. If I can figure out how to take it apart so I can paint the ugly gold accents black, and refinish the wood body with the same finish I plan to use on the chair, we will be in business. It should be perfect for the new desk, in fact.

I already got a snazzy new lampshade for it and everything.

1 comment:

  1. Muuuuuuch better! Wes and I did something similar with the footstool for the glider we got at a garage sale the other week. Makes a world of difference.