Wednesday, January 23, 2008

A chair makeover...

I am having a busy week as I change around some furniture, do a bit of organizing in my quilt studio and work on a set of chairs we have had for many years.

When we were first married, we moved to Stockholm, Sweden for my husband's work. We bought these chairs after returning to Holland as they were a perfect reminder of the beautiful Swedish castles and museums we loved to go to. These Gustavian chairs are seen everywhere. Only one problem. They just don't go with our style of decorating.

I seem to become more daring as the years go by and I decided this week to see what would happen if I waxed the chairs. I used a dark furniture wax over the white paint and the result has just been perfect. We love how they have now warmed up in color and really match our home's interior while having the Swedish nostalgic charm.

Okay, I admit it! I am a wood and brown kind of girl. Sorry to all you cottage gals out there. I love seeing the white cottage style by others but just cannot make it work for me no matter what I try. I bought this fabric at a market last April in Maastricht. I loved it the moment I saw it. I planned on using it on a different chair. It just seemed the right fabric though for these chairs with their new color. It is a real "touchy~feely" fabric too.

One of the things I am really thrilled about it how the wax has brought out this beautiful wood carved detailing even more. Compare it to the photos of the chair before and after and you see the motifs much more pronounced.

So I will be working on the second chair now today. What are you doing around you homes? It seems this time of year inspires to start projects to make the house more appealing.


Wild Rose said...

Hello Heidi,

I love the detailing on your chairs ~ they look terrific!

Marie x

Nunnie's Attic said...

Good Morning Heidi!!
I love the chairs. And I agree, I just can't seem to make it work either. Except for maybe in my bathroom. I'm a brown wood kind of girl too. But, I keep trying! Missed you bunches!!


Nancy said...

Hey, I love this look. I always liked these chairs anyway, (but I love blue) but they are so you now.
That fabric is so perfect. Good job Miss Heidi. That's what Zoe would say.

Anonymous said...

What a good idea, using wax on the chairs. I like the woodcarving very much. Great job again.
Groetjes, Elly

angelasweby said...

I love the Swedish look and am especially fond of Carl Larsson, Your chairs are really lovely and make me think of him and his home. I love the way you have made them work for you. You have make such a great job of the waxing and recovering.
Warm wishes Angela

Ragged Roses said...

The chair looks lovely Heidi, SSSSh don't tell anyone I am meant to be painting the hall but thankfully, I think everyone has forgotten I said I would do that! If you go over to my blog Heidi, I've given you an award!

Carolien said...

Hello Heidi,

I love the way you changed the chairs. That woodwork comes out far better. Though I love the blue fabric, the white chair itself was a bit sterile, wasn't it? That new fabric must be comfortable ... Well done!

I will show you my sampler next time. Have a nice day!!!
Hugs, Carolien

Nancy said...

What a wonderful idea Heidi, and the results are beautiful! I love how your wax treatment brings out the detail. The fabric is nice colors and design, and I think the two are perfect together.

theresa said...

Hello Heidi, the chairs are lovely. I lived in holland in 1967 for 3 years as my dad was in the air force and worked in maastricht, we lived 20 miles away in a place called heere. I still have a taste for salty liqourice, you can get some over in wales, but not the selection that you get in holland. Theresa

Jessica said...

The chairs look great! I love the details on them. I just finished my own reupholstery project and it's a lot of fun making a huge decor difference with one small fabric change.

Dena ~ swaddlecottage said...

Hi Heidi,

I love the look of your new chairs! You can really see the detailed work now and the fabric is really perfect with the new tone. On the peck box, I got that at an antique shop and they had a bunch of them. It's made to look old but it isn't. The chintz rabbit was a thrift store find last summer and I hadn't seen anything like it before that :) Happy creating!!! I just love doing decorating and redoing something so that it fits better!


Regina said...

Hello Heidi
Wonderful chairs with loveley detail
and beautiful fabric.I love it.Great
Yesterday we had sunshine alldays.
It's war so beautiful.Today we had on
earlier morning frost and one later a little bit sunshine and on the evening little bit rain .
Hugs, Regina

Kristen said...

What wonderful chairs! I would like them either way, but isn't it wonderful being able to take something and give it new life! I just love it!

Lynda said...

The chairs are beautiful, Heidi! Isn't paint wonderful? When something just doesn't work a little paint and a bit of fabric completely transforms it! Good for you to recognize what works for you and not get swayed by someone else's style. ~ hugs, Lynda xo

Mary said...

Now this is a perfect makeover Heidi - they look much more inviting for your style home, less stark. You did fab job. The Scandinavian white/blue scheme is gorgeous with Gustavian style pieces - but perhaps moreso in those countries. I think it has something to do with the light. I love the cottage look too of course, however am not into everything painted white with cabbage roses on all the upholstery. It's beautiful when done in the right setting - and if one is into Rachel Ashewell's Shabby Chic look.

Like you, I enjoy mixing the wood tones - especially with creams and warm white shades such as sandstone and limestone. These pick up the warm wood tones and, as all my doors and trim are stained a medium warm brown, having lighter walls works.

I bought all the paint today and am hoping the painter comes this week - I want to get going!!

Andylynne said...

I love your chairs and have enjoyed seeing the huge difference the wax made. Amazing how something so subtle can be so different. I can see how they blend in with the way you have the house now. Sounds like you have been busy and that yet another project has been taken on and almost finished. I envy you that, but it's inspired me and that's good.
I also enjoyed catching up on your other posts. I love that yellow and brown dress! Sounds as if you had a wonderful experience living in England.

The Tattered Nest said...

Hi Heidi! Love the chair, it turned out beautiful. If you are anything like me, this project will snow ball into another and another...that is the cycle I am in...and having fun doing it!Enjoy yourself!

Penny @ Lavender Hill Studio said...

I think your chairs are turning out wonderful! I love the white cottage look, but I need color too.

p.s. Yes, I do miss my farmhouse! I loved that home. I won't get rid of the hutch, I will just find another place in my home for it. Maybe use it for books, or something.

Ragged Roses said...

Hello again Heidi!
No of course I don't want the award back, I LOVE long comments! Thank you for all your lovely words as usual, DD is feeling a little better today and M is very happy that I mentioned him!!!!
The hearts are little about 13cm x 16cm
Have a good day xxx

Rhondi said...

Hi Heidi I love what you did with the chairs. They look so much richer now and the fabric you chose for the seats looks veryrich. I like it. I'm with you . I love to look at the all white rooms but need color for myself. Today I am working on a quilt. Rhondi xo

Nan - said...

I like the brown, too. All three of our comfy chairs are a variation of the same kind of brown brocade. I think it allows for splashes of color other places. But they sure have been torn by our one stretching-on-the-furniture cat. :<)

Joyce said...

They look fabulous!
The carved designs are just lovely as is the new "color" you've given to them. I'm not the PURE white kind of girl myself either, I would rather it be a bit more "dingy" or aged looking as well.
Job well done!

Tracy said...

Wow, the chairs look brand new! It's amazing what a little paint & fabric will do. :)

Espresso Girlie said...

LOVE the chair. Your talents never cease to amaze me. Perhaps I can persuade you to come to the states to help me.