Friday, December 7, 2012

Rock-a-bye

Refinished Bentwood RockerThis is a project that took me way too long to finish!  This rocking chair was given to me by my parents when I got married.  The chair is sentimental to me mainly because my family has a home video of me on that chair.  They had their camera hooked up to the TV, so I was watching myself on the television while they were recording everything!  I was on my feet on the chair and I was going up and down (extending my legs and then folding back up) and getting a kick out of it!  I was probably about 2 and a half.  It’s always funny to watch a kid laugh, even if it was your younger self!
The chair was all sorts of brown from the 1980s.  And so I wanted to change it up.  At first, all we could afford to do was to use some fabric I had on-hand and cover the brown cushions with white fabric and I glued a black nylon decorative rope around the edge to hide the staples.  It wasn’t what I really wanted, but it wasn’t as ugly. 
Sometime later we moved to our new place that has a backyard and a garage which meant I had room to work!  One of the first things I did after we moved here was to take the chair apart and then find some paint stripper and sand paper.
Refinished Bentwood RockerRefinished Bentwood Rocker
It took a bit of work.  And this spring and summer were rather wet for this area, so there were some days that I just couldn’t work outside.  Finally, it was done!  I put all the pieces back together and painted and painted and painted.  My husband started off by using two cans of spray paint we already had.  But it needed a little more layering so we got a small can of paint.  I put on several more coats, with fine-sanding in between. 
During the stripping portion, I also removed the old, gross fabric from the back-rest and bottom of the chair pads.  The padding under the fabric had nearly disintegrated, so that made it very messy!  I only kept the wooden boards!  I went out and bought fabric (a very popular pick from JoAnn’s!) and new padding.  I used the wood as templates for cutting out the padding and the fabric.  I also put quilt batting on top of the padding for to make it extra plush.  I glued those all together and then once the frame was done, I glued the cushions back on.
My kids were so excited to sit on it once it was done (they were trying to sit on it in the middle of the construction phase!)!  It’s now in the kid room and I love it!
Refinished Bentwood RockerRefinished Bentwood Rocker
Here’s a good resource if you want to do this to your own chair: My Red Rocker.

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