What I have learned doing this project:
1. The best way to understand how to reupholster a piece of furniture is to analyze the original upholstery job when you strip the old upholstered piece.
3. It takes longer than assumed. There were zillions of staples to pull, there was so much material to remove and it required two more visits to the local fabric shop to find the material that I needed. So it took me two weekends and some hours after work instead of one whole day. Yeah I´m a bit optimistic. The next one will be faster.
after glazing the front legs
4. A reupholstery job is always good for a surprise. You´ll never know what you will find underneath. I didn´t know what the old batting and foam would be like. It was disgusting! I had hoped that I could reuse the old foam after cleaning and would only need some batting that I already had at home but there wasn´t any foam in there- just tons of yucky dusty wool. I had to remove everything except for what you see on the above picture and wait for the next working day and the shop opening to buy some foam. Plus I found a burried treasure in this chair, little by little, while I stripped it:
- some old Austrian coins that were used before the euroization in 2001: 11 Schillinge and 60 Groschen (worth less than 1 Euro, so you´ll find me back at work on Monday)
- a hair pin,
- a pin, a broken rubber band, a metall hook
- a pen,
- a knitting needle
- and a button for a blouse. Apparently the midcentury chairs had belonged to a woman. There is still hope that the former owner hid her packet of paper money in the 2nd chair that is awaiting upholstery. Keep your fingers crossed!
5. Choose a not so complicated piece for your first attempt. I did good to choose a chair with wooden armrests for my first project so I had to sand and glaze but didn´t have to upholster the armrests. A winged back chair with upholstered armrests is definitely something for advanced learners but now I think that it is totally doable as a second upholstery project if you use the old fabric as a template to sew the new cushions. I want to reupholster my old navy blue wing chair in the living room one day (Add it to my to do list- haha. First I need to finish my second mid century chair. Both midcentury chairs will be in our bedroom. Then I need a matching king size quilt for our bed and I have only bought the fabric yet -'Ruby' by Bonnie and Camille. You get the picture. :-) )
6. Just try it! It´s fun and rewarding. It is really not so hard. If you try it on a thrift store find you can see if it works and if not- who cares?