Vintage rattan chairs are perfect to incorporate into so many decorating styles from Grandmillennial to Chinoiserie Chic to Hollywood Regency! See how I changed the look in my dining room with these Ballard Design Dayna dupes!
Vintage Rattan Chairs – Update In The Dining Room
I’m excited to share my vintage rattan chair update in the dining room today! In a way this was an unexpected change, but one that I’ve been thinking about for some time. If you’ve been here for awhile then you might have seen my recent dining table project. I showed you what I feel is the best way to paint furniture…and it’s NOT chalk paint! While I was at it painting the Facebook Marketplace table (trash to treasure!) I painted my existing chairs.
These chairs went well with the table. You can find them still available HERE, and honestly they are lovely! After about 5 years with them though I have been bored. 😝 Notice the legs on the table and the chairs. They are close to the same, but honestly I’m not a matchy-matchy person and I’ve been looking for something lighter in feel. NOTE* I’m storing the French style chairs as an option to use in the “winter” months. I say winter lightly, since it’s always tropical down here!
But I digress…as I was scrolling Facebook Marketplace. Typically I’ll peruse FBMP a couple times a day when time permits. Woah… up popped this set of 6 (4 side chairs and 2 armchairs). They were just what I was looking for!
I believe that they could be Henry Link cathedral chairs and if they are…well then...😱
Lucky me that the seller happened to live almost around the corner, and they were priced at just a couple hundred bucks! 🙋♀️ When you find something that you know others may covet on FBMP, hurry and be nice to the seller. Don’t act like an a_s and try and bargain them down too much. I’ve been both a buyer AND seller of vintage since the 90’s and find that the best way to negotiate is to just ask “can you do a little better on the price”?
The Original Look Of The Vintage Rattan Chairs
The chairs had been recovered at some point and were already lacquer painted in a pure white. Lucky me again, since I only had to recover the chair seats which only took a few hours. But wait! When I began inspecting the seats I pulled the cambric off one to see what I was dealing with. Behold…glorious vintage tropical barkcloth!
The Chippendale Dining Chairs Original Seats
Red just isn’t for me, so I started looking for pale blue performance fabric. Of course I turned to Crypton Fabrics a company that I had gotten to know more about when I worked with the Design Blogger Tour at High Point Market.
I ordered THIS Crypton fabric at just $20 a yard. It came quickly and I couldn’t be more pleased! It has a nice hand to it and was thick enough that I could just cover what was on the seats.
Simple Steps For Recovering Chair Seats
First of all, I am NOT a professional upholsterer by any means but I have done my share of home projects over the years! You will find THIS DIY UPHOLSTERY TUTORIAL useful that goes into it a bit further. On these chairs, I decided to remove the piping and staple the fabric directly over the existing red fabric. The homeowner told me that they hardly ever used the chairs and they were in excellent condition.
Cutting the piping and then pulling it off was pretty straightforward. The only tip that I have here for you is that corners can be a bit tricky, so use a razor knife to cut into the corner folds with a new blade.
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I laid out the fabric on my kitchen island and measured then marked with a pencil. Be sure to leave at least 2″ all around to be able to pull your fabric taught. Put a staple in the center first of each of the four sides. Then you’ll work your way out from each staple to the ends. HERE is a great tutorial to watch on YouTube and there are plenty of others.
* TIP *
Corners come last and be sure to flip over the chair to see that you’re pulling tight enough in the corners.
The entire process took me no more than 3 hours at most for 6 chairs. Don’t be intimidated to take on projects like this, as I promise they aren’t that difficult. After you do your first chair the rest will be much faster! Just make sure that when you order your fabric you measure correctly and purchase a bit extra…just in case.
The Vintage Rattan Chairs Reveal!
I’m not sure if I’ll add some contrasting piping and going to live with it for awhile first. When I took these photos I hadn’t yet screwed the seats in place, but I’ll get around to it! As I mentioned, there are four of these vintage rattan side chairs and two arm chairs. Our dining area isn’t very large, so I opted to place the four side chairs around the table and an armchair on either side of the buffet.
Dining with a view around here! I placed an oversized sea shell on the dining table and filled with a few oranges. Since it’s currently summer, I enjoy keeping the decor light and uncluttered.
The vintage Thomasville buffet was a thrifted find that I painted several years ago. It’s tropical look mixed with my French finds give the room a Palm Beach Regency vibe…perfect for Miami life! Interesting side note: I have several of these HUGE shells that came from the former Miami home of Sly Stallone!
With our dining room facing west, we have outdoor canvas roll down shades to block the afternoon sun. We installed this at least 25 years ago and had them custom made with marine grade canvas. One of the best things that we’ve ever done here! Anyone notice the photo bomber 😻 outside?
I’m contemplating wallpaper next over the chair rail, but not 100% convinced. We plan on painting the interior of our home in the fall because it can use a fresh coat of paint. Not sure that I want to go down the rabbit hole of wallpaper, so will see. Thought of something floral…as in my visualizer photo below. What do you think?
I ordered a sample and it is definitely more on the green side then seen in the photos online. So it might be back to the drawing board if I decide on going the wallpaper route.
Are you looking for some blue and white accessories? I have had a nice collection for awhile now, and put together some products for you! Just tap on any image to shop the look below!
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