Hey, it’s Jillian, and here at my brick nest I have some really fabulous furniture upholstery changes to share. I tend to get really excited about home decor, but these changes really made my heart skip a beat. Many months ago I started to make plans to reupholster my living room furniture, and it was a loooong process–but boy, was it worth the wait!
I mentioned back in this post that my mother-in-law has a treasure trove of antique furniture, and we have been fortunate to receive most of the antique furniture in our house from our in-laws’ collection. Several of those pieces worked fine in the formal living room, so I lived with it as was for five years. But with home decor, I have a hard time settling for “fine” when I know it can be fab, and the decorating itch finally got me (again). Since the bones of these pieces were great, there was no sense in replacing them, when updated fabrics could breath new life into them. I don’t think the price of reupholstering is always worth it depending on the furniture, as often times new furniture can be purchased at a similar cost to reupholstering. But in my case, these hand-me-down pieces are unique, well-made antiques, giving our home character, so a fresh fabric facelift was the answer. It was time to tackle this room with a few reupholstering projects.
Nothing against pineapples, but the fabric on this cute little channel back chair (pictured first below) was not a favorite of mine. The second chair with the yellow dot print was also never really my cup of tea. Lastly the brown velvet couch was a dark, drab color towards which I almost never gravitate. So now these three furniture reupholster victims are about to become totally changed divas! Here are the before pictures.
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I should start by saying that last spring I decided to cover the bright, overpowering blue painted walls in this room with a grasscloth wallpaper (you can see it in the yellow chair photo above). I adore this beautiful, textured, tranquil wallpaper, and that change to walls is what got me scheming and dreaming about tackling the upholstery. I wanted the fabrics to work with not only the wallpaper, but with the existing rug in the room, so finding fabrics with the right shades of blue was a challenge. I went through many, many, many samples until I got it right. After MANY trips to the local fabric warehouse, I selected three fabrics.
The first textured dot print fabric I copied from a friend’s house (with her permission, of course). I had been on the search and couldn’t find anything great until I saw this fabric while visiting her. It was perfect, and was the jumping off point for the other fabric decisions I made. This Lee Jofa fabric is super pricey, but I was able to score it from the local fabric warehouse at a discounted price (but I’m not going to lie–it was still no where near cheap). Did I mention all this furniture was free??? It was easier to justify the cost of the fabric when the chair itself cost me nothing. Once I selected the dot fabric, I decided that for the second fabric I wanted a large-scale print to contrast the small-scale dot pattern. This was difficult to find with the right color of blue, but boy did I nail it (if I do say so myself) when I found this Kravet fabric (pictured second). For my final choice, I decided on a simple, durable, well-priced neutral fabric to complement the other two prints.
I am literally squealing with excitement as I prepare to show you this transformation! Let’s begin with the fabric that started this all. I mean, come on, I am drooling while typing! Is it polka dot? Is it animal print? Does it matter? It is so ridiculously dreamy!!!!
But this chair is the real showstopper–it turned out even better than I imagined, because the beautiful pattern displays in full on the large flat back of the chair (called a Martha Washington chair–I had to google that). My heart is going pitter patter!
You should have seen me when the furniture was delivered. Let’s just say I’m pretty sure the delivery men think I’m crazy, and truth be told, I am…crazy in love with this furniture! See my two new
babies chairs together below.
I think I need to calm down and have a drink of water! Okay, now I am ready to show you the less exciting but very beautiful and simple couch, as well as the rest of the room. I think the light tan color really shows off the curves of this couch nicely, and the durable fabric is not only so much brighter, but more functional too–double bonus.
Well, another lesson I have learned is that once you start changing things in a room, sometimes it creates a huge snowball effect. First came the wallpaper, then came the reupholstered furniture….but then I realized that the lighting in the living room was not sufficient enough to allow for full appreciation of the beautiful fabrics! So these fun new lamps are another addition. Since these are without lamp shades, they really brighten the room (which has no overhead lights). They are also similar to my favorite lighting fixture (available on our Shop page) that is located in the casual dining area. I love to tie together decor elements throughout the house to make it feel cohesive.
But the snowball effect doesn’t stop at the lamps! Also on the chopping block in the new living room is the coffee table (the curtains and rug could also be replaced, but I do need to stop the gigantic snowball soon!). It is fine for now, but I have my eyes on these beauties.
I hope you’ve enjoyed touring my “new” (thanks to the power of reupholstery) living room!
- My nest is not a museum, it is a comfortable, charming, unique, fabulous home with young children. I have high-end custom pieces, vintage tag sale finds, authentic antiques, colorful prints, and basic box store staple furniture. There are many ways to add functional style to your home and I can't wait to share my ideas and inspirations with you!