Scalloped Kitchen Chairs

When Corey and I originally moved into this house over a year and a half ago (!), I honestly thought we would never use the little breakfast nook in the kitchen.

I mean, honestly. We’d lived in nothing but tiny apartments that didn’t even technically have dining rooms, so it felt downright luxurious to not only have the most giant dining room in the history of the world (our dining room table is 104 inches long!) but to also have a breakfast nook larger than any other dining area we’d ever had.

If I’m being honest, it seemed a bit overkill.

BUT!

After living here for over a year and a half (!), I have grown to adore our little breakfast nook. We use it all the time. Corey eats breakfast here daily, and we sit down to a big breakfast here every single Saturday morning.

And guess what? We use the dining room too!

I still feel a little silly saying that we actually need two separate dining spaces, but, um, we do now.

It’s so nice to have this little area in the kitchen to plop down for a quick breakfast or lunch (or just do get some work done), but to also have the giant dining table for when we have guests or want to sit down and have a nice dinner at home together.

So, in summary, we love the breakfast nook. And, really, it’s the only area in the kitchen that actually feels kind of “complete”. We think the furniture in this little area is perfect, and it’s really come together nicely over the last few months.

But, can we talk about those chairs?

Ugh. I love them so much it’s almost embarrassing, but that fabric? HOT MESS. I actually like the color, but it’s gross, dirty, and completely falling apart.

Cute, right?

We’ve been meaning to recover them for forever, but I have had complete design paralysis when it comes to actually choosing a fabric. Should I go floral? Graphic? Pop of color? Neutral?

I DON’T KNOW!

After months (and months and months) of indecision, I finally decided it was time to just make a damn decision and go for it. After all, it’s not like it’s particularly difficult to recover them if I hate the fabric I choose.

So, last week  I finally ordered some fabric.

I went with a scallop pattern in navy. It’s more color than a black or gray fabric would have been (and this area definitely needs color) but it’s neutral enough that we can still layer in colorful accessories without worrying about clashing. And, it ties in nicely with the navy chairs in the dining room, which is a win-win for me.

So finally, after owning these babies for more than 6 months, I recovered them this weekend. I’m always tempted to gloss over the steps to recovering chairs, but it’s something I’ve gotten asked about a lot in the past so I’ll go over it again – I promise it’s ridiculously simple.

STEP 1:

Remove the seat part of the chair.

STEP 2:

Remove the old fabric. Curse at the  chair many times while you do this. Remember that this is by far the most difficult part of this process.

It helps if you watch some Vampire Diaries while you do it. Ian Somerhalder makes everything better.

(Ew, Corey’s computer screen is dirty.)

STEP 3:

Cut your fabric to the right size for the chair – leave a few inches on all sides. Lay out the new fabric (iron it first, please!) and plop the seat on top of it.

STEP 4:

Enlist your handsome husband (or wonderful wife, or fantastic friend) to help, because this is a two-person job. I mean, you can do it alone if you want. It’s just easier with someone else.

STEP 5:

Pull the fabric tight on one side. Staple.

STEP 6:

Keep going. Cut off the extra fabric when you’re done. I know that’s not particularly descriptive, but this is one of those things you’ve just gotta learn as you go. It’s like wrapping a present…and just remember that if you mess up, it takes just a few seconds to remove the staple and try it again!

STEP 7:

Put the chair back together and marvel at the amazing job you did.

LOVE.

This might sound dramatic, but I feel like this transforms this entire little nook. The navy goes so well with that dark wood and the gold legs that it makes me a little weak in the knees. And having some pattern over there makes the whole area feel so much more put together and complete.

…now if only we could do something about that terrible floor and wall texture/color.

Oh well, baby steps!

Have you done any small projects that make a huge impact lately?

20 comments

  1. Brandi says:

    That looks super cute! I love the light you get in that space, and I think the fabric you picked really does make the whole space look cleaner and brighter. Our dining room set needs an upgrade badly, but the chairs aren’t upholstered, so sadly I can’t use this trick to make them look nicer.

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  2. Lauren says:

    Navy and Brown is such a classic color combo. I think it’s beautiful, and still looks very 60′s without being overkill.

    seriously, GREAT choice :)

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  3. Brittany @ Brittany's Joy Blog says:

    AAH! I absolutely adore them–the shape of those chairs is absolutely killer and you did a great job picking out the fabric too! (did you use fabric.com? That fabric looks familiar).
    Midcentury, man; i die!

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    Amanda Reply:

    Thanks!! I did! I actually first saw the fabric on Tonic Living but it was more expensive than I wanted to go, so I searched on Fabric.com and found the same stuff for way cheap!

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  4. Tanja says:

    Love the chairs they look so awesome. I have a bunch of chairs I have been meaning to recover and just haven’t bit the bullet yet.

    My question for you is, what bulb do you use in your ikea light? I have that same fixture in my dining room and I LOVE it but its so dim. I live in the pacific north west where we have lots of dark grey days so am at odds with the lamp. I want to keep it but with a max of 40 watts it just doesn’t give off enough light. Did you find a magic solution to the wattage limit?

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    Amanda Reply:

    Thanks! :) We actually use a 60watt bulb in it (oops?) but to be completely honest, we very rarely turn that light on. We have a set of bay windows right by that table, and are very fortunate to have a light-flooded kitchen, so it’s pretty rare for us to turn a light on in the kitchen at all. When we do, we usually turn on the overhead light (which is currently a big, awful, florescent light, but will eventually be replaced).

    So basically, I’m absolutely no help because our light just doesn’t actually get used all that often! Sorry!

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  5. Shoshanah says:

    I think you’re completely right. It does transform the room! It just makes everything feel so tranquil. And you are making me wish we had a breakfast nook as well as a dinning table. Currently we have room for a dinning table, but it’s in a location better suited to a breakfast nook.

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  6. kjpugs says:

    All I can say is WOW!!!! They turned out so great. Navy acts neutral enough without being boring. It is the perfect color/pattern to add something without screaming “LOOK AT ME!” Very impressed! Please come do my house next kthanx.

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  7. R. says:

    They look amazing! Are those chairs gold dipped? Or is it actually brass? I’ve been looking for chairs very similar but haven’t had much luck.

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    Amanda Reply:

    They’re actually brass on the legs. We definitely got lucky with these!

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