Chair refresh

I bought this nice chair from an auction and I really like the shape and the cushion color. It's a nice, rich apple green. The wood is really darker than I like and I think it would look better in my room, lighten up a bit. Any ideas on how to gently do that other than a total re-painting job?
chair refresh, painted furniture
  10 answers
  • Z Z on Sep 22, 2013
    What a pretty chair Frankie. The easiest way to make the wood lighter without stripping, which could easily damage he fabric, would be by sanding off the current finish and re-stain and/or coat with a polyurethane.

  • Darla H Darla H on Sep 22, 2013
    I really like it just the way it is, it is very beautiful, and besides it is a known fact that when things are not totally matched they are more inviting and cozy. It makes a room look more homey and comfortable, makes people feel at home. Look at some picture of home decor that looks similar to your room and what you have in it, and look at some that are not like yours, but that you like, and that would blend in with what you have. If you still want to lighten the wood, your best bet would be to either cover the cushions, or take them off while working on the wood, it isn't hard, you just un-screw them from underneath the cushions. When the wood has been sanded, cleaned and re-stained, let dry for a day, then put the cushions back on, This will make sure that they beautiful green cushions are safe :)

  • Carole Carole on Sep 22, 2013
    I would absolutely not be trying to sand or re-stain this chair with the fabric in situ. It is inevitable that no matter how careful you think you are being that you will snag the fabric or get stain on the fabric. If the seat or back can be popped out or unscrewed and removed while you make the frame over - then go for it. If not, I would leave it alone unless you are going the whole hog and replacing the fabric as well. Good luck!

  • Frankie Laney Frankie Laney on Sep 22, 2013
    @Z @Darla H @Carole All great advice and very much appreciated. The upholstery is the kind that is well seated and the seat cushion has double welting and the back is upholstered as well. After considering my options, and looking at all the other projects I want to work on, I'm going to leave it as is. It's like new, and I really do love the fabric....thank you!

    • See 2 previous
    • Loribeth Loribeth on Sep 24, 2013
      @Frankie Laney I'm so glad you decided to leave it as it is. I couldn't think of any way you could lighten the wood finish without ruining the fabric. I've tried to do that exact same thing before and have never been successful.

  • Bobby Barbara Smith Bobby Barbara Smith on Sep 23, 2013
    A friend had the same issues with two chairs. She masked off the fabric and used a lovely chalk paint to redo the wood. It turned out beautiful. Wish I had a photo to show you.

  • Frankie Laney Frankie Laney on Sep 23, 2013
    @Bobby Barbara Smith I was thinking about a chalk paint, but I couldn't determine a color that would work with the color of this fabric. I was thinking there might be a process I could do to brighten this dark wood. I really appreciate the information I have received.

  • Patty Patty on Sep 24, 2013
    I wouldn't do anything to that beautiful chair. If it had major damage to the finish then yes I would restore it. You have a beautiful piece and you really don't want to ruin the value of it.

  • Linda Stroney Linda Stroney on Sep 24, 2013
    I think I would find out first it's age and history. If it's a valuable piece as it is. I wouldn't touch it. I love it as it is too. It would be difficult to not get any paint etc. on the fabric, which is in great shape too.

  • Centrd Centrd on Sep 24, 2013
    Citrons & apple greens look really pretty with gray. I love that combination. You could use one of the chalk paints in a gray or "linen" shade. I do think it's possible to accomplish this without damaging the fabric, but you have to be meticulous with your masking (eg. getting the tape up under the welting and then covering everything) to ensure complete protection of the fabric. But if you're careful, I don't think it would be that difficult and would look stunning and you'd get what you want, rather than live with something you're not entirely happy with...depending of course on the value of the chair. If it's truly valuable then maybe swap it out for something less precious. My guess is that it's a pretty chair but not an heirloom.

  • Centrd Centrd on Sep 24, 2013
    dark gray would also be very pretty.