Wednesday, April 28, 2010

My 1950's Chair ~ A Makeover Story

The cool little chair that sat in my Gram's bedroom for decades, finally got a makeover! This is the Before picture...
I agonized for several days about which fabric to reupholster her in...a fun vintage 50's barkcloth?...a pretty 1940's floral?...a tropical?...a patchwork of vintage cutter tablecloths?...or maybe the awesome Anna Maria Horner fabric I just got? You see my dilemma. So, I decided it would be best to use a plain unbleached canvas for the upholstery and make slipcover's to suit my current whim. :-)
Let me just say, that the upholstery part went MUCH faster than the slipcover part! It went something like this...First the old dry rotted fabric came off and the individual pieces were labeled with a sharpie.
Then I traced each piece onto muslin, and cut out enough to mark a 5/8 inch seam allowance.
After I had all my pattern pieces cut out and marked, I turned my attention to the base of my chair and added a bit to the existing padding by covering with several layers of cotton batting. Once I had finished fiddling with the pattern pieces and tested the fit, I was ready to cut out my canvas and staple it to the frame.

And then finished it off with the arm caps.

Altering the pattern pieces into a slip cover proved to be quite a challenge. There was a lot of wimpering and a near fatal incident with my evil serger that almost made me scrap the entire project. But I muddled through, and I have to say, I think she looks very sassy in her new dress. For the first slipcover I decided to use a bold teal and blue dress fabric from the 1950-60's and trim it out with piping made from a Garden Party fabric by Anna Maria Horner.
The back closes with simple ties.All in all it was a fun project. :-)
This DIY is also part of the link party over on A soft Place to Land.
And a big Thank You! to LuAnn for sharing this project on her Back Home Again blog! :-)

Monday, April 19, 2010

Vintage Ephemera and Feedsacks

Its time for another Vintage Alphabet Party! This month's letters are E and F, so I'm showing my collection of Ephemera and Feedsacks. (I know Fabric seems like an obvious choice for me, but it was too overwhelming so I narrowed it down to just feedsacks.)

First the Ephemera... the picture above is a group of advertisement cards. I also have a fun Cincinnati Reds Baseball schedule from 1956, a trio of items from The Fabulous Flamingo Hotel in Las Vegas circa 1950, and a ticket to the Kennedy Inaugural Parade in 1961.

I also love this beautifully written letter on Dry Goods stationary dated 1882.Now for the Feedsacks. Here's a few from my current collection...
Be sure to stop by the Etsy Cottage Style Blog to see the other collections beginning with E and F.

I also wanted to share a quick photo of the chair re-upholstering project. Because I couldn't make up my mind about what fabric to upholster it with, I decided to cover it in a natural canvas and then make slipcovers in different prints. I'll show the process in my next post.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

My excuse is Spring

Yes, I'm using Spring as my excuse for being absent. It has been so pretty outside and of course, there was some major spring cleaning. I also started an upholstery project.
First, I'll show you a few pictures of what's blooming in the yard...

And here is the cool 1950's chair that I'm re-upholstering...

I have the old fabric removed, and today I'll be making patterns with it for the new fabric. If all goes smoothly (ha) I'll be back within a week to show the make-over.

Now, get outside and enjoy the pretty weather!