Reader Redesign: One Charming New Chair

When Teresa sent us her before and after chair makeover pics, we couldn’t wait to share the goods. Here’s her letter:

I just had to pass along the story of our $20 garage sale find. My husband hated the patterned Ikea curtains that I had hanging in our living room so I’m happy to share one of the panel’s reincarnation. My husband and I refinished the chair by sanding it and using Kilz oil-based primer and a can of regular old white high gloss spray paint from Lowe’s. We can’t take credit for the reupholstering though, as we had that professionally done. But here she is in all her glory. This is definitely my new favorite nook. I unwind here after long days with my two year old and six month old. Sometimes with or without a glass of wine, but always with the latest book that I am currently reading. Hope you enjoy my special ‘getaway’ as much as I do. Cheers! -Teresa

Here’s Teresa’s chair before the big primer + paint + Ikea curtain makeover:

And here it is after being spruced up with some oil-based primer, some glossy spray paint and some fun patterned fabric stolen from the living room windows:

Don’t you adore Teresa’s creative use of the curtains that the hubby hated? We definitely love her new “getaway” chair as much as she does and we appreciate that she did all of the chair refinishing herself to save some money (while leaving the upholstering part to an expert since she recognized that it was above her skill level). Thanks so much for sending along those photos Teresa! Your “new” chair looks super cozy- and you definitely deserve some reading time after wrangling two young children all day.

So what do you guys think? Cozy? Inviting? Inventive? Who’s a fan of Teresa’s creative thrift store chair reinvention?


  1. says

    That looks so great! Way to think out of the box, Teresa! :) I looked for a link, but couldn’t find one. Does Teresa blog? I loved the styling in the photos, too, by the way. Nice work!


    • says

      Sadly Teresa doesn’t have a blog (we always include those links in Reader Redesigns if our submitters have one). But maybe she’ll catch the blogging bug soon…


  2. Christin says

    Love the chair! I actually really love those curtains and I’ve wanted to find a way to use them in my home – but they just don’t work for now for us. They work great as a chair too! Kudos to you Teresa! (And the general look of the nook is quite charming as well).

  3. Cindy says

    Beautiful. I am so sad that I have to be a full-time working mom because I want to do some projects so badly and haven’t yet found the time. I’m gathering great ideas though!


  4. says

    I love it! It’s so fresh and perfect in that little corner. This may be a silly question, but where do you take things to get reupholstered?

    • says

      Hey Michelle,

      You can just ask friends and neighbors for a recommended upholsterer or check out your Yellow Pages, google around or even peruse sites like Craigslist for some great options. You can also visit any fabric stores in your area for a recommendation (the private ones, not chains, are especially helpful). Good luck!


  5. Jen says

    I love those curtains too! What a great chair! So inspirational. I too am a full-time working mom so am just gathering ideas until I can find the time.

  6. says

    Tre awesome!

    Good job, Teresa! I think Ikea sells a chair with that fabric on it (or something similar) but it’s like a bazillion dollars! What a clever idea and I have to say I think I like Teresa’s better!

    Good work!

  7. Jo says

    I love, love, love this chair! I am not always able to see the potential in garage sale bargains like yours, but you have totally inspired me to try my own chair for our current bedroom redo on a tiny budget. Brava!

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