A no sew way to recover a chair seat.

A special chair gets an easy update

A no sew way to recover a chair seat.

Hi friends!

I have a confession. I have a special affection for this beat up, old ladder back chair that I have had for many years. I found it in an old shop in Richmond way back in the late 90’s.

Shortly after I bought this chair, I adopted the love of my life, my dog Payne. Payne and I lived in a few different apartments together before I got married, and this chair was always around. Other furniture pieces came and went, but this chair moved around with us. It was well used and even has places on legs where he chewed on it as a puppy.

Well, Payne passed away at the sweet old age of 14 1/2 and this chair is one of the things that reminds me of our days together. It’s priceless to me and I always find a place to put it.


It’s not much, it’s certainly not fancy , and over the years my cat Macy has also had her way with the original woven seat.

It wasn’t looking good and was in desperate need of an update.

(photos of cat damage)




So, I went ahead and gave it a simple face lift.

Using a grain sack style tea towel for fabric and some batting I had in the attic, I gave it a 5 minute no-sew makeover.

A no sew way to recover a chair seat.

Here’s what I did:

First, I removed the seat and covered it with 2 layers of batting that I stapled on with a staple gun (yes Rori, I know how to use a staple gun).



Then I lined up my towel so that it was as straight as I could get it. Pulling it nice and tight, I stapled it across the top, bottom and sides.

image That’s it.

5 minutes later it looked 100% better and the seat no longer has to be hidden.

I’m thinking this summer it would be fun to cover the seat with a fun floral print and maybe even touch it up with some colored paint. In any case, I’m happy to still have it and I will continue to see the sentimental value that it holds.



14 thoughts on “A special chair gets an easy update

  1. I’ve always wondered a little at how you would recover a chair like this. I love that you covered this chair with a dishcloth! So clever! I would have never guessed looking at the chair… This was one of our features at at our ReLoved Fridays! Thanks for linking up! I hope to see you again at this weeks party!

    Kelsey @ The Vintage Storehouse & Co.
    Kelsey @ Vintage Storehouse & Co. recently posted…ReLoved Fridays Link Party #16My Profile

  2. I love the chippy imperfections of your much loved chair Karen. I’m sorry to hear about the loss of your dog Payne, but I’m glad that this chair brings back such lovely memories for you. The tea towel make-over looks fabulous and I appreciate you sharing it with the party goers at Shabbilicious Friday. I’m excited to be featuring it at tomorrow’s party.
    Hugs ~ Kerryanne

    1. Kerryanne, thank you so much for such kind words and the feature at Shabbilicious Friday! What a nice treat for me!
      Have a great day.

  3. I love the make over and I absolutely adore the story ! If it was ME I wouldn’t paint it (that’s the history of your dear Payne) and it looks great the way it IS !! I like the idea of changing out the seat cover for the seasons or when you need a pick me up.
    Question: I see you have a Stanley stapler…I’m going to pick up a stapler at Home Depot this week and was wondering if that gun is easy to handle. I have arthritis in my hands so I need eeassy !!!

    1. Hey gal! Yes, it is very easy to use. I have the same problem with my hands and I can work with it easily.
      Looking forward to getting more pics from you!!!

    1. Kris, can you believe I bought that chair that long ago? Back when I was single, in my own place, I had a lot of the original Rachel Ashwell stuff, remember that? I had a ton of the bedding and Payne would eat the pillows that were über expensive! Ha! Those were the days! He was a good dog.

    1. Thank you, he was a legendary dog.
      BTW, Sorry for the typos in the post, I hit post instead of preview, oops! I knew I was going to do that one of these days! Always a darn typo!

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