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Wicker Rocker Resurrected

This wicker rocker had seen better days, and seemed destined for the garden to become a planter. I got it for $10 at a thrift store and lugged it home to join my other flea-market garden planters. After realizing how sturdy it was and falling in love with the vintage vibe, I couldn't bring myself to relegate it to the disintegration that would be inevitable outdoors as a planter so I decided to try to return it to life as... a rocking chair, of all things!
I cleaned up the flaking paint on the wicker with a wire brush and used sandpaper to smooth the wooden rockers.
While cleaning it up, I saw the Heywood-Wakefield label, a company well-known for quality antique wicker furniture. That convinced me even more that I wanted to save this chair.
The arm was badly damaged. I am not a wicker repair expert and didn't want to spend the big bucks to have it professionally repaired. I just wanted to make it a lovely piece that I could use in my potting shed for some relaxation at the end of the day.
I had some scrap copper pipe about the right size to make a replacement for the missing outside edge, so used a tubing cutter to cut it to the right length. I bent it to approximately the same curve as the arm.
Using e-6000 glue, I attached the inserted the broken ends of the wicker arm into the hollow ends of the tubing. I taped the tubing to the framework and let it dry for 24 hours.
Still a pretty ugly repair, huh?!
A coat of white latex primer and a couple of coats of Krylon Ballet Slipper pink paint, and it's starting to look better!
Now, to cover up that ugly broken arm! I had some old and faded Rachel Ashwell Shabby Chic rosebud sheets that I had saved after we bought new ones for the bed. I tore a piece of the sheet into about 1" wide strips and wrapped them around the arms, tying the strips at each end to the wicker frame.
To make the fabric more moisture resistant so I could put it outdoors on occasion, I sprayed the strips with several coats of clear acrylic.
A bit of a vintage lace scrap for trim to cover the broken seat edge, a pillow for the seat, and a vintage flour sack pillowcase tied on the back with ribbons = pure bliss for a comfy spot to relax, have a cup of tea, and read my garden magazines!

Materials I used for this project:

  • Antique Heywood-Wakefield wicker rocker   (thrift store)
  • Sandpaper, wire brush   (hardware store)
  • Copper tubing   (saved from another project, found in my junk stash!)
See all materials
  • Ann N Glenn Seabolt
    Ann N Glenn Seabolt
    on Sep 25, 2016

    What a fabulous save. I'd love a little she shed like that in my backyard.

    • Barbara Stanley
      Barbara Stanley Hendersonville, NC
      on Sep 26, 2016

      Thank you! I do enjoy my little cottage. I have a post on here with some photos of the potting shed if you'd like to see more You could find it if you search for Crickhollow Cottage.

  • A Crafty Mix - Michelle
    A Crafty Mix - Michelle South Africa
    on Sep 25, 2016

    Amazing, I absolutely love how you used the fabric for the arm rests. Stunning job

  • Dianne Paradise
    Dianne Paradise
    on Sep 25, 2016

    Nice SAVE ---- LOVE IT!!!

  • Specialgrannie
    on Sep 25, 2016

    Well done I love how you re-loved this chair and put it back to something elegant that you can have a lot of joy sitting in it.

  • Helenehi
    on Sep 25, 2016

    Done so nice! Very encouraging to DIY's.

    • Barbara Stanley
      Barbara Stanley Hendersonville, NC
      on Sep 26, 2016

      Thank you! It wasn't hard to do, just a little tedious to clean up the old paint.

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