Living Room Queen Ann Chair Re-Do & Update

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This room is really hard to photograph because of the bright light coming in on only one side, but I wanted to share a whole-room photo now that both queen ann chairs have been redone!  There’s a lot in this post that I wanted to go over quickly, but feel free to ask any questions in the comments for more details since this is mostly an update post.

Here’s a before:


Pretty-but-oh-so-90s-grandma, right?  You may have seen this chair in the preview post where we finished one chair in more time than we thought it’d take to do them both.  These chairs had literally thousands of staples in them and we opted to remove all of the original upholstery before putting on the new canvas and leather.  That’s one of those things that you can’t really know until it happens, so it’s best to not try a project like this on a tight deadline.


In the end, I’m really happy with how these turned out!  They are technically my mother’s, but she has downsized while they are preparing to build a new home and I was happy to foster these chairs in the meantime, especially since I’m trying to furnish this room for next to nothing.  Here’s our living room as is right now:


Now the chairs are in the fully-functional living room!  It still  needs some help, but here’s where we’ve been:

Last time I shared a photo of this room, the only piece of furniture that was the same was the rug.  It’s a ~1904 Heriz Persian rug that we thrifted for almost nothing.  It used to be paired with ole’ blue, which we reupholstered, but really didn’t love (and decided to part with):


It used to be in our master bedroom, but fits the new living room so well!


Anyway, back to the newly mid-way improved space (and chairs!).  The canvas and leather works so much better in a more modern/transitional space.


Between the chairs, that’s an old letterpress cabinet.  It’s one of those pieces that migrates around the house.  It works as a little occasional table between a pair of chairs.  The woodgrain is beautiful, so I don’t have the heart to paint it.


We decided to try brads on the armrests.  Don’t look too close, because this was much more difficult that we expected!  The chairs did not have these before so there were not any existing holes.  Had there been, this would have been much easier.  With the railheads, you have to hit them super straight or they bend.  Instead of getting insanely frustrated, we did our best and will reevaluate later when we have the energy for it again.  There has to be a trick to this that we haven’t found.


I love the fabric and the leather!


Seriously, though.  Isn’y this leather beautiful?  I’m so glad I’m not vegan sometimes.


Okay, so I’m going to go back to that photo of the whole room for a second…  The main items on the to-do list are:

  • Update the sofa, maybe a color change, definitely a foot change
  • Finish the white cabinet – I have TWO posts coming on this beast; it was one of those projects that just will never end
  • CURTAINS!  That wall of windows desperately need some control and structure.
  • Art & accessories – what’s there was just thrown in place for the meantime.  Chances are it will all get changed.


I’m not ignoring the two elephants in the room (the sofa & the cabinet).  One is mid-project and needs it’s own post(s) and the other is still in the planning stages.  I’d love to hear your ideas for the sofa.  We are currently looking at a product that will change the color to something close to the chair seats.



1 Comment

  1. Painted Buffet Re-do for the Living Room – PART 1

    May 21, 2014 at 11:13 am

    […] I’d still love to paint those master bathroom cabinets, but I wanted to do a test-run on something easier to prep, less permanent, and that wouldn’t shut down our master bathroom with all of the craziness we have at our home these days, and I had a very sad formal living room.  I snapped this photo in the midst of re-uplohstering my mother’s queen anne chairs: […]

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