Decorating & Design - Styling Secrets

Before and after: Chair makeover

Style at Home web editor Lauren McPhillips teams up with Carrocel Restorations to take a $30 chair from blah to beautiful.

It all started with a $30 chair I found at a consignment store in Cobourg. I loved the shape of the chair, but the fabric was horrible and the structure was a little wobbly. A colleague recommended Carrocel Restorations in Markham, Ont. as they specialize in restoring furniture (rather than a lot of places that simply reupholster).

So call them I did, and in a few days I was dropping off my chair and DwellStudio fabric from Robert Allen at their huge showroom. Over the two week period that my chair was in their hands (we had to order more fabric because the bolt had a wee defect), Carrocel sent me pictures along the way, and I have to admit that I was a little scared when I saw a photo of my chair stripped down to the bare bones and scattered across the table. But when I arrived to pick it up, my jaw dropped -- I couldn't believe the transformation!

To realize how much hard work goes into a chair restoration, you have to see the step-by-step process -- it's incredible. Here's how my chair went from gross to gorgeous.

carrocel-before.jpgThe 'before' shot
This is the chair as I bought it, horrible pinky fabric and all. I had to look past that though to see the lovely shape and potential that the chair had. "It's a well-made solid wood Regency-style arm chair," says Carrocel Restorations office manager John Kalogiannides. "Starting a reupholstery project with a good quality frame is always a plus."

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