Refinished Thrift Store Chairs

I bought these chairs from my local thrift for $3.00, they had a great look, but needed a re-vamp. The wood needed to be brought back to life, and those ratty seat cushions needed to be replaced. So here's what I did:

Step 1: Remove the Seat

First, I removed the seat and seat back in order to make it easier to sand.

Step 2: Sand

Then, I sanded, and sanded some more. If you have an electric sander use it to save your hands and time (Bonus: If you have a boyfriend or girlfriend tell them how fun it'll be to help sand). I didn't use stripper though because it wasn't necessary but you may want to if the chair has heavy or multiple coats of varnish or if it's painted. Make sure you read through the directions on the can.

Step 3: Remove Dust

Take a damp cloth a wipe the sanded chairs down to remove the dust.

Step 4: Stain or Paint

Choose a stain and follow the directions on the can. Staining your chair will alter the color of the wood and protect it, but the wood might look great's up to you.

Step 5: Replace Seat

Re-screw the seat and seat back onto the chair, then take a seat!

Time elapsed: approximatley eight hours. Total cost: approximatley $13.00.

Overall this was a fairly easy project and I would recommend it to anyone who likes the look of old-timey chairs... and with time to kill. Thanks for looking!



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    5 Discussions


    12 years ago

    Great idea, and great way to save cash! I have a suggestion- if you didnt dig the material for the seat, one thing you could have done was, say find a couple of sweaters also from the good-will, and use those on the seats.

    2 replies

    Reply 12 years ago

    Sweaters is a good idea, but I wouldn't do that for kitchen or dining room chairs. I covered my dining room chairs with a $2 vinyl tablecloth so they wipe off when they get slobbered on. (But those seats are purty.)


    12 years ago

    indeed they are


    12 years ago

    Dang. Sorry the picture that shows all the steps and the original chairs is so small.