19th Century Chair Restoration DIY – Part 1

19th century chair webbing diy

I finally found some nails! They’re not exactly what I was looking for, but they worked just fine.

What I used for the first part of the seat:

  • Burlap/jute sack. The best thing would have been to get some real upholstery webbing jute strips, but uhm yeah. Good luck finding that in a store here. I had to go full MacGyver and make my own strips using a burlap/jute sack that I bought at a garden store. I think they will hold as I made the strips double. As long as no one gets any ideas and wants to actually SIT in the chair it should be OK.
  • Cotton fabric. Combined with the jute sack.
  • Fence staples and upholstery nails. Both types of nails were a bit to big, but they worked.
  • Hammer. Unless you want to Hulk-Smash the nails into the chair. ROOAAR!

This is how I made the first part of the seating – the jute webbing.

I had to make sure to fasten the strips in a way that enabled me to tighten them. I think professional renovators use some type of special tool for this, but I had to use my incredible muscle mass (and tears, lots of tears) instead.
fasten strips

tighten strip

first strip

I continued this torture until I had a webbing that looked like this.

webbing complete

The original seat only had four strips (I could see the impression from the strips in the wood) but I added one more for some extra strength.

This is the combined jute/cotton cover. As you can see I also ran my sewing machine over it in a chequered pattern. Hopefully this will make it strong enough to hold.

cotton jute seat

construction of the seat

jute weave webbing

Well… Shit looks LEGIT!

seat webbing underside

It was my intention to just let the old brown paint be, but now when the seat is looking this good I want to refurbish the whole thing.
Rococo chairs from the late 1800’s were usually shiny black or brown here in Sweden, so I bought some shiny black paint! I think it will look awesome. The only thing I have to find now is a suitable cover for the seat. Not sure if I want a more modern look or not…

To be continued…


19th Century Chair Restoration DIY – Part 1 — 3 Comments

  1. Pingback: My Jewelry Box, Part 1 – The 19th Century | Rags to Couture

  2. Pingback: 19th Century Chair Restoration DIY – Part 2 | Rags to Couture