Thursday, April 28, 2011

Six New Dining Chairs for $16 (well... sort of)

Spoiler: This is how it ends. With my reupholstered chairs, and joy.

Nearly three years ago, my parents bought me brand new dining room furniture for my new house. The furniture I'd had was built-it-yourself plywood furniture from Crate and Barrel. While I did painstakingly build it, it wasn't built well, and the materials were cheap and shabby. I like real wood, wood that gets scarred with use, showing signs of the people who enjoyed spending time at it's side. I would have liked a giant, old butcher table, but that was not in my offered price range. The table I have now subs nicely.

This new furniture was from Raymour & Flanigan, and is strong and fairly well built. It's heavy wood, and comes with a side piece that holds all of my vintage stemware and plates. The seats, however, have accumulated various small stain spots. Nothing major, but definitely obvious. Since we have a three year protection plan on the furniture, the company has to come out and remove the stains. Or so I was told.

When the technician arrived though, he nearly laughed and said, "I'm not cleaning these seats." He did, however, spray something on one small, unnoticeable stain. After it dried, it was a hundred times worse.

He sprayed the cleaning foam in a ring, and created this stain.
All that was there before he sprayed it was a quarter-sized water stain.

I called the company to complain and to get help, and they offered to credit me the price of the chairs so that I could pick new ones. They wouldn't match the set, and it's the kind of set that needs to stay together. I love mismatched furniture most of the time, but not in this instance. I didn't want new ones, I just wanted the ones that I had to be clean. My son's belt had carved notches (literally) into the back of the chair, my red toenail polish had marked the legs of one or two of them, and W taught the kids to play poker in them. We've had good times in those chairs, and they are practically brand new.

I bought $16 worth of fabric -- about 3 yards -- and reupholstered the chairs. I love the fabric, and the colors (buttery yellow and a dark pink) and feel so good about having done them myself, and preserving the chairs. Now, they are my new favorite chairs.


  1. They look fabulous! That fabric is great! Seeee I knew you had it in you DG! Niccce!