DIY Night: How to Recover Dining Room Chairs

Can I get a high five?

Yup, that's right, the dining chairs are D-U-N done! I am so proud of myself, if you couldn't tell.
 I started working on them at 7:30 last night, and was finished and cleaned up by 9. That included realizing that my staple gun didn't come with any staples and making a Menards run!

Here's my recap

Tools used:
  • fabric scissors
  • manual screwdriver ( I'm always paranoid about stripping the heads)
  • manual staple gun
  • 5/16" staples (mine took T50 kind.. whatever that means)
  •  quilting basting spray (temporary adhesive, makes it easier to work, and isn't permanent in case I decide to change fabrics in a year or so)
  • home decor fabric of choice
I had originally planned in this previous post to get 54" wide home decor fabric. But my Joanns had gotten water damage (what? aren't we in a crazy drought?) and most of the 54" stuff had been affected. So instead, I bought 45" wide. Word of advice - measure beforehand! Duh, I know this and usually do it, but wanted to shortcut so I didn't have to run home, then run back to the store. Anyways, the bolt only had 1 yd and 8 in on it, and I ended up buying all of it. Lucky for me that's EXACTLY how much I needed, with absolutely nothing to spare.  The fabric wasn't as modern/geometric as I had wanted, but I should hide spills fairly decent.

  1. Took seats off. Flip over the chair, and take out the screws attaching the seat cushions onto the metal chair frame.
  2. Clean seats of any crumbs, stuck on food, or other yucks. I know it's going to get covered anyways, but I'd rather not seal in nasties.
  3. Rough cut fabric to correct size.  I cut the fabric along center fold (hot dog way), then again the hamburger way - so 4 square-ish pieces that fit perfectly on my covers. 
  4. Use quilt basting spray for a temporary hold. Lay out a square right-side down. Spray old seat with basting adhesive. Flip seat over into center of fabric square.  Again flip seat right-side up, with fabric sticking, and smooth out any wrinkles. (note: I found it easier to put seat on top of fabric, rather than fabric on top of seat. That way you can see just how much extra fabric you have on all sides. Much easier for centering)
  5. Now we start stapling. Have under-side of seat facing up at you. Start stapling in the middle sides, (like N,S,E,W of a compass) and work your way out. . I found the staples went in best if I put my weight behind it & the main part the the staple gun in resting on the seat -  so turn the seat so that you're stapling the far side from you. About 3-4 staples per side was enough for my chairs. No need to yank on the fabric, as long as the basting spray step was nice and taught.
  6. Corners - I ended doing a simple pleat corner, that's how the chairs were done from the manufacturer.  I wish I would have gotten pictures!
  7. Double check that all staples are holding, pick out & replace any that didn't go through (can be a problem on the corners with multiple layers of fabric. 
  8. Trim up any loose bits. 
  9. Place pretty new seat onto chair frame, and screw back on! This is a good step to have a power drill for, but I was too lazy to go down to the garage to find it :)

    Fabric: ~$8  (40% sale, at ~6.50/yd, then remnant at half of that)

    The staple gun was kind of loud - and this is all relative. Both boys were in bed, and Mr. E. was catching up on his DVR'd man-shows.  I know he thinks I'm crazy for being such a busy body, and I  try not to be disrupting. My point: not something to do at midnight if you have other people in the house sleeping.

     I love that feeling when you finish a project, and each time you walk by it you get all giddy "I did that, I made that!"

    Next up: painting the picture matting a green to match!

    I can often be found linking up at these fabulous parties-
    Monday: Make It Pretty Monday, Skip to my Lou, DIY Showoff Project ParadeMore the Merrier Monday, C.R.A.F.T., Just Something I Whipped Up, The Gunny SackDebt Free Mommy,Cutesy Mondays, Craft-O-Maniac Mondays, Make It Mondays,
    Tuesday:Get your craft on Tuesdays, Project Queen, Sugar Bee Crafts, New Nostalgia, Lady Bug Blessings, Too Cute Tuesday, The Schwins Tuesday Party,
    Wednesday:The Thrifty Home, Linking up with Lil Luna, Tea Rose Home, Adorned from Above, Rae Gun Ramblings - What We Wore, Read, and Made Link Party,  Ginger Snap Crafts - Wow Me Wednesday,   Someday Crafts - Whatever Goes Wednesday,   My Girlish Whims - Your Whims Wednesday,  
    Thursday: Transformation Thursday at The Shabby Creek Cottage, Catch a Glimpse Thursday, Creative Juice Thursday, Thursday's Temptation @ Two Yellow Birds Decor,Crafty Soiree at Yesterday on Tuesday, Delightfully Inspiring Thursday,Throwback Thursday
    Friday: Shabby Nest,Whipperberry, Its a Hodge Podge Life, 30 Handmade Days, I'm Lovin It Link Party at Tidy Mom,
    Saturday: Free for All at Young and Crafty, Show and Tell Saturdays, Strut Your Stuff, Get Schooled Saturday,
    Sunday:Think Pink Sundays at Flamingo Toes, Sunday Scoop at I Heart Nap Time, Our Favorite Things Link Party,



    1. Wonderful!!!! I love to give new life to old things . Gr8 job!!
      I have also made some soft seats for my kitchen chairs recently :)

      1. Thanks!
        Although I can't read Russian, I really like how your chair pads came out! They are a lot like the style I've seen at Ikea (my fav store), and love the veggie material :D

      2. Thank you ;) I love Ikea too and these chairs are from Ikea !
        btw, there's a translator on the page.

    2. I love these kinds of projects. So easy to do and make such a huge impact.

      Thanks for linking up to Throwback Thursday!



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