Chair Makeover: Re-purpose A Seatless Chair Into Fun Rustic Decor

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I often see wooden chairs given up at the side of the road whose seats no longer quite fit the bill.  Most of them were the old cane seat chairs that ended up with holes or tears to big to be dealt with.  These chairs do not need to be discarded, however, when there are other fun ways to use them.  I found this chair at a resale store and picked it up for next to nothing.  It looked like the previous owner had re-purposed it also as a garden planter but it was now in very rough shape.

Here is the before picture:

I could have simply repainted it and used it as a garden planter by sticking a potted planted through the hole in the seat and setting it outside in the Spring.  However, I wanted to try something different, fun and just a touch whimsical.

I started by giving it a good cleaning!  Since I wanted the chair to have a distressed look, I didn’t worry about sanding the old paint off.  I simply worked with all of the imperfections.  First, I brushed on a light coat of flat white latex paint, leftover from somewhere in our house.  **I’ve grown to love all of those leftover gallons of paint in our storage room!  Anyway, I brushed very lightly over the areas where I wanted bare wood to show through.  I figured it was much easier to have a light hand rather than painting a thick coat and then sanding some of the paint back off again.  After the first coat dried, I went back over with a second coat, filling in any areas that I thought were too distressed looking.

Now for the fun part!  I wanted to add a rustic accent and suddenly deer antlers popped into my head.  Who would have thought?  I couldn’t shake the idea so I took a peek into my husband’s stash of antlers and found some I liked.  He has so many that I was sure he wouldn’t mind or even notice one little set missing.   I held the antlers up against the chair and thought WA-LAA!  It was kind of weird but I liked it.   I really like the contrast of the antler color against the white.  So I plunged right in and super glued those babies right to the chair.  Then I wrapped them around the chair with twine as an extra measure.  The next idea to pop in my head was glitz.  Really?

I draped a string of clear beads from each antler to dress her up a little bit.  I thought my husband would have a stroke when he saw that but he actually like the artsy look.  Plus, it was in my office so it was totally appropriate!

The whole purpose of this chair is to use it as a magazine holder.  Luckily, I already had this great tin bucket that just happened to fit into the whole in the seat perfectly.  I tied a burlap garland scarf around the bucket, at the seat, to hide the remaining hole and to add a touch more glamour to her.  Then, I filled the bucket with some favorite magazines and my chair makeover was complete!

Happy Decorating!

I share my projects at these link parties.

I'm addicted to crafting and decorating my downtown urban loft and up north rustic cabin. Read more about me.
  1. Very rustic, it looks great!

    I’d love to invite you to share this on my Thingamajig Thursday party going on now..


    1. Thanks Alida, I’m heading over there right now!

  2. It just makes me smile that your husband has a “stash of antlers”.
    thanks for linking up.
    tara @ Tales of a trophy Wife.

    1. Ah yes….he’s been hunting for lots of years 🙂

  3. Thank you so much for sharing last week on Thingamajig Thursday! Hope to see you again this week!


    1. You’re welcome Alida! I will be sharing again 🙂

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