From Donation to Treasure!
October Open House
October 23 – 27
Tuesday 10 – 6
One of our long-time, great friend of our business recently made a decision to down-size. One of her saddest realizations was that she would not have the space to keep many of her treasured family heirlooms.
This chair, while very sentimental, was in very bad shape. Her instinct “donated” it to me, but her heart held on to it. I took her donation and then started!
I wasn’t even sure that I wanted to bring the chair into my house because I’ve seen some pretty nasty things under fabric that old. I decided to strip it in the garage (with gloves and a mask on) and then make the call about moving it into the house. The fabric was crusty and brittle, so it came of in small pieces. When that was off, I could see the “guts” of the chair.
Burlap, horse hair, and broken springs were what was left. None of it was salvageable. So, I carefully removed it all and was left with a very basic (and hollow) frame.
At that point, I knew it could be into something special, but had no real inspiration for it. So, I put it in my secret storage space-under the ping pong table in my basement. It set there for months. Then, one day, it’s owner was in the shop and mentioned how much she liked one of the chairs that was on display. Immediately, I had inspiration for that chair. When I shared my idea with the customer, she was completely on board.
It was then that she told me how special the chair was since it had been her mother’s. She had many memories of her mom sitting in the chair and had been distressed about giving it up, but just didn’t have room for it in the new home. As we talked, she realized she could use it as a practical piece of furniture at her desk.
And so, my work began. I painted the legs and arms, then stretched strapping on the back and seat. New foam was cut, covered in batting, and attached. Then finally, the reupholstering began.
Several days later, we had an absolutely new looking chair.
Now, my friend still has her chair and the memories to go with it. I’m sure her mom is pleased!