Wednesday, February 1, 2012

I'm Sorry, You're Gonna Have to Find Somewhere Else to Sit

Remember this pretty little chair that I pictured last week with my desk?

Well, now look at her:

Excuse the smart phone-quality photo above. 

She was pretty by herself (yes, it's a she) and might have looked better in another room, but I thought she 1) didn't connect well enough with my room in her deep turquoise state and 2) looked childish next to a borderline, could-go-both-ways desk that some people thought would look nice in a little girl's room. It would, but that's not exactly the look I'm going for at nearly 25. I'm all for feminine, but I want it to be sophisticated too. So in an effort to make this chair grow up a bit, I plan to refinish it. Not paint it, but actually sand and stain it. And that required me to strip all the paint off.

My first attempt, with the chair fully assembled, was mildly successful. Still, I had a really hard time getting in all the crevices to remove paint. After all, if I'm going to go to this much trouble to refinish a chair, I'm going to do it right. I also think there is part of me that knows my grandpa, who did an amazing job refinishing antique furniture all the time, would do a nearly perfect job, and there's some romance and nostalgia in trying to emulate his old-school, high-quality craftsmanship.

After doing quite a bit of googling, I found one website that gave instructions on how to disassemble a chair. Duh! Why didn't I think of that before? It's the same strategy I used when I refinished my coffee table last fall. So I bought a $5 rubber mallet from Home Depot and used it to knock all the pieces out of their joints.

And boy oh boy did that make my life easier. I know that this "chair" is going to be so much easier to sand in pieces too, which is important because I need to do a very thorough job. Tonight I'm going to make one more attempt at stripping some stubborn residue off the pieces, wash it down with mineral spirits, and start sanding. Oh yes, I'm also going to write a blog post so you can see our new, pretty TV stand. Fingers crossed that I don't stay up till 2 am doing it!

Update: I just linked up to Shine Your Light's "Before" edition of her February's Before and After link party. So I have to finish this by the end of the month! Although I'm hoping it will be sooner :)

1 comment:

  1. Sarah, I am so impressed that you took that chair apart! Wow - you're like a professional furniture refinisher! Can't wait to see it's after (the before was so fun!) And I loveeeee that desk. Seriously has me eyeing my endtables for a possible stencil project.
    Thanks for linking up to Before & After! See you on the 24th.


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