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Thursday, July 4, 2013

The Lady and the Gentleman - in RED

Lady and Gentleman in Red

Darn it!! I have this terrible habit of getting too excited about new projects. I forgot to make absolutely sure I had before pics of both of these chairs. Oh well, I'm not gonna take them apart and start over! Here's the before of The Gentlman (he's called that because he's just a little bigger than The Lady).

Both members of this couple had seen better days: the cane was brittle and coming apart; the veneer was worn through in a few places; joints were loose.  But, they have wonderful "bones."

On a side note: don't ever, ever try to make red chalk paint with high definition paint. It makes the paint thin and watery. Also, ALWAYS use tinted primer when using very pigmented colors. Please don't ask me how I know this. :)

Anyway, this homeless couple was brought in, clean up, sanded, primed and ready to dress up.  After all the prep work, they needed to be really dressed up. So they were given a couple of coats of a bright red, like lipstick red. Then all the edges were distressed. After all of that the red was still too bright. It was like putting a pair of knee-high Chucks on a 70 year old woman. Some of them can carry it off, but this pair still needed to have age-appropriate garb.  

To take care of that, a dark wax was applied. What a difference! The red was still really red, but the wax brough out all the little details and gave the paint just a little more depth. 

Now that the paint was done, it was time to tackle the seats. My handy hubby came up with a solutions. He cut out plywood bases to replace the cane bottoms. Using 1/2 inch plywood, he routered the bottoms, creating a lip that extended on top of the seat. He made sure to leave a little give in the size to accommodate the batting and fabric. 4 little blocks were glued to the bottom to give us something to screw through once the seats were put in place. I know, it's a little technical, but we thought and thought about a solution. It's always exciting when you see it and are able to come up with a plan to carry it out!

The plywood was covered with a thin foam, batting and finally the upholstery fabric. It's "stuffy" enough to be dressy, but can still be country, primitive, modern or traditional. I fell in love with it the first time I saw it. Yo cover up some "outstanding" cane holes, I added a wide, black, braided trim. That was the final touch!

It was like putting that beloved brooch on you coat! They looked completely new! 

 Although this pair doesn't match, they are definitely are a couple. After all, clones can be boring. I think they will look great in an entryway, at the foot of a bed, or any corner that needs brightened up. And now presenting the Happy Couple - The Lady and Gentleman in Red!
The Genleman - larger and manlier
The Lady - because she's smaller, daintier