Stencils, Paint, & Grainsack, Oh My!

Recently, I had a client who wanted a shabby chic look for her new dining space, but she just couldn’t come to terms with the idea of using old grainsacks. Sure, she wanted an authentic look, but the thought of sitting on used (and possibly dirty) grainsacks wasn’t her cup of tea.  

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So, we went to work hunting down a few stencils to make our own grainsack. One was a stripe stencil and the other had the design. Then we selected just the right shade of hemp fabric. If you’ve never used stencils on fabric, it’s the easy thing in the world. Here’s how you do it.

Continue reading “Stencils, Paint, & Grainsack, Oh My!”

The Ugly Chair Makeover Reveal

Remember back a couple of months ago? I put out a call for for you to submit all your ugly chairs, we voted, and there was a winner! Does this chair ring a bell? It was the winner!

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This chair was one of those that has awesome bones. My rule of thumb is to always look at the shape of the chair. Ignore the wood and fabric. Is the shape attractive? Does it have potential? This one was a definite YES! Continue reading “The Ugly Chair Makeover Reveal”

How to Make Your Day a Little More Happier

There are so many people out there who are making career changes later in life, just like me. Anyone who’s done this knows what a scary thing this is to leave a career—especially one you’ve been successful at—and move towards one that pulls at your heart but is also very uncertain. You don’t know how its going to evolve or end. Over the past few months I’ve been reading books by author Chris Guillebeau. His books explore topics like finding the work you are meant to do, setting goals, living a life that doesn’t conform to society, and giving back to people in need. It’s encouraging to read stories about others who are forging their own way into the unknown so they can find happiness and joy in what they do.

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Why Everyone Needs a Challenge

While on vacation in France with my family, I was reminded of something that I knew as a teacher long ago…we all need a challenge. During that week, we spent our days doing a lot of walking and exploring, which left us really exhausted in the evenings. Since there was no television, we took up playing cards. Now for a little context—we are not much of a game family. Sure, when the girls were young we half-heartedly played Monopoly and Sorry, but now we typically spend our evenings at home chilling in front of the television or watching a movie. We found a deck a cards in one of homes we rented via AirB&B (which I highly recommend in place of hotels because its much cheaper and more interesting!). Here’s one of the places we stayed…a 16th century chateaux. Continue reading “Why Everyone Needs a Challenge”

What Happens When a Chair Graduates?

I often get the question, “Is it hard to let go of a chair after you’ve worked on it for so long?” My response is not typically what people expect…No, its not hard to let go. I’m not a hoarder…even though my chair stash in my storage would seem to claim otherwise! I’m the type of person who likes to finish a project and check it off my list. (Don’t get me wrong, I have some pieces that I’m not parting with any time soon. But these are NFS!)

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I like to get client’s chairs in the mail and on their way to their new home. Yes, I feel proud of what I do and I love the chairs that I work on, but there’s a time and place to say goodbye.
So, a chair gets stripped, painted, and upholstered—which takes many hours to complete—but what happens to a chair when it graduates my workshop and is ready to go to its new owner? It’s a process, that’s for sure!  Continue reading “What Happens When a Chair Graduates?”

How to Upholster Like a Pro

Have you ever wondered how upholsterers achieve beautiful works of art on chairs?  It’s not an accident when upholstery turns out beautifully, I can guarantee that!  It takes thoughtful consideration when working with printed fabrics, especially when it involves a set of chairs.  Should the prints match exactly or show different aspects of the print?  What color do you paint the chairs, if they need painting?  And what style(s) work best for a particular room?  When a client comes to me looking for a set of chairs for their dining room, there are a few consecutive steps that I take to give them the set of their dreams. Continue reading “How to Upholster Like a Pro”