A Thing For French Chairs…Redeux

antique french caned chair
I have a major thing for French chairs and if you’ve toured my home on the blog before then you know that I am not even kidding!
Today I worked on some chairs that were a Craigslist score

from a few years ago when we were up at the beach house and I was matter of factly looking at what was for sale.
french cane chair peonies
We brought them to our house to use, as I had been coveting something looking like the Rachel Ashwell Darcy chairs that were out of my thrifty budget.
beautiful french farmhouse dining room
I’ve really enjoyed having them here at the house, which by the way does not have a formal dining room…only a dining area that is open to the kitchen. I love them so much that I made several sets of chair slips for them…you’ll see why shortly and can see more of the room from a recent story HERE.
french country dining room set
New replacement chairs in the dining room…
Those caned chairs always seemed a bit petite in scale for a regular sized dining table, as they are vintage and in my years of buying and selling I’ve noticed that chairs and beds used to be smaller than they are now! Recently I purchased new dining chairs at World Market and they are sized better for today’s times I think.
vintage beach house dining set
The photo above is of the breakfast room at our beach home and is taken from a French magazine that the house was published in. Although pretty, I grew weary of the outdoor patio set and the somewhat retro look in the room. After 11 years it was def time for a change.
french script chairs
Have I lost you yet? I know…it’s confusing, even for me! Here is how the vintage French caned chairs look as purchased from Craigslist a couple of years ago. I have never been a fan of that French script fabric, but someone covered up the seats that way and I have been covering with slipcovers since I got them.
french caned chair diy project
This morning I got out some of my fabrics and linens and knew that this authentic French grainsack would be perfect. Luckily it was just the right size to cover 4 chairs. Whoot!
reupholstering a chair
I was surprised to see horsehair under the burlap and springs, and SEVERAL layers of old fabric as well. I decided to just pull up the French script top layer only.
chair project photo
Staples come out easily with a small flat head screwdriver and pull out with needle-nose pliers.
before after diy chair project photo
They look a whole lot better now and no painting was required thanks to the former owner’s fresh coat. I used my trusty staple gun to attach the fabric and the 4 chairs took only about an hour or so.
french cane chairs
This weekend we will be working on a table to go with these…and it’s one that a friend sent my way for free! I’ll show you that soon, and will be taking them up to their new home at the beach before the holidays.

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  1. Gee Singh Newbanks says:

    Swooning over your French chairs Janet. Sigh.. wee bit of chair envy.
    I know the table will be amazing!

  2. Jann Olson says:

    I love grain sack and the chairs turned out absolutely darling!

  3. Janet, these chairs are so awsome! Love the little stripes on the grain sacks! And for sure, your pictures are fantastic!
    Have a happy happy weekend

  4. Darrielle Tennenbaum says:

    I love your chairs too and I also have a thing for chairs and grain sacks!

  5. Love them Janet!!! Just so lovely!
    Have a wonderful weekend!! We are on a little getaway…just getting checked into the hotel!

  6. Kirsten Erickson says:

    Gorgeous! Where did you get the grainsack linen fabric?