Friday, April 26, 2013

New Life for Old White Chairs


In this day and age of throw aways, our dumps are getting full but everything we buy is no longer made to last. My chairs are still very solid they had only lost their luster, so I decided to paint them myself and create a 
unique and one of a kind set.
                                                                                                            It seems very wasteful to fill the landfill with my discarded items. I also find that most of the older goods were made of sterner stuff and last much longer than the newer materials,
they just do not look good anymore. So my project was to renew my old white plastic chairs and give them some love. I am very happy with how they have turned out. 


I have five chairs and have only been able to complete three so far as the store only had three cans of paint and each chair used a whole can. I am sure I will be able to get more as soon as I can get to another Home Depot store at another location. I started by giving the chairs a really good washing with a mix of white vinegar and dawn dish soap. I wanted to make sure there was not grease or dirt on the chair surface before I painted, so that the paint would have a good surface to adhere to. To make painting easier on myself, I covered my round patio table with a dollar store plastic drop sheet so that clean up would be quick and easy. I wanted the chairs to be at a convenient level for my body posture while I was painting. This would keep my arthritic body from complaining too much while I was working. The base colour I chose was Hammered Copper from Rust-oleum. This is an all surface paint that is textured.

Hammered Copper Spray Paint


The hammered finish covers any imperfections in the old chairs finish. I then chose to tape off and paint the back section of the chair with Black Satin Rust-oleum paint. I spent lots of time with the taping as it was important not to have any over spray.





 Some of the taped sections were curved, for these sections I had to cut small snips in the tape as I went to shape it while I taped it along the line I wanted. I taped off a section in the centre of the chair, for this section I used an x-acto knife to cut along the line I wanted taped. First I used my finger to find the line on the chair and then I lightly cut with the knife. It was very easy to remove after I had painted.
When all of the spray paint was dry, I used my collection of Delta Perm Enamel Air Dry Paints to add a Free hand design to the back of each of the chairs. I chose a daisy and vine design as I am very partial to daisies.

Each of the three chairs is slightly different. I added a dragonfly to one of the chairs and a lady bug to another. 






When the painting was dry I gave them a quick spray with a clear varnish just to help them last longer in the outdoors.  As soon as I can get more Copper paint I will finish the other two chairs on our patio. I may have to think of a few accessories now too. This worked out to be a perfect sunny day project. I hope you get inspired to keep your old chairs too.

Cherie

11 comments:

  1. What a great idea! I just threw an ugly white plastic chair away :-(

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  2. I have recently done a new design on one more chair, that I have not posted yet. It turned out great too. One less thing in our city dump, and the chairs turn out so nice. They have a great smooth surface now too, that they did not have even when new. My preference for painting the old chairs is to use a hammered finish paint, as it hides any imperfections that the chair may have acquired over time. Maybe one day you will have another old white chair. Cherie

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  3. Your chairs look great! I wonder if you painted the black area first and then did the copper, if it might be easier to tape that section off (even using some cardboard to cover over the larger area of the black back section) if that might make the work of taping easier. They probably make a hammered finish in black as well. What do you think? Keep your spirits up, you are doing great things! Cheers, Cathy vJ in MA

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    1. Thank you Cathy; I painted the copper first and then taped off the areas that I did not want black paint. The chairs are curved so I found I needed to use plastic to cover the areas that I wanted to protect. Cardboard does not bend enough to fit the curved sections of the chair. I would think that they probably do make some type of textured black paint that would work very well. The texture really does help hide the fact that the chairs are old and beat up. I have done one more since then but I used hammered silver on the base and white for the accents. It turned out really good too. It always makes me feel better when I do something creative. I hope others find that wonderful glow that comes from creating. Its what keeps me smiling despite being in chronic pain. Cherie

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  4. What a great idea ---- I am waiting for spring and will do the same with my chairs and table!
    Greetings from Germany, Sabine

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    1. Please send me pictures, so I can see how they turn out. I would love to see them. I had such fun doing mine. There were no restrictions in my mind while doing them as they were already junk chairs that no matter what I did they would look better. This gave my creativity free reign. Good luck with yours

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  5. These are beautiful! I don't have any white plastic chairs but thinking of buying some just to paint like yours. Thank you for this information!

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    1. Thank you Carol; I hope yours work out great too! They only took a day to complete. The drying time and taping were the most time consuming

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  6. Indeed, this is a work of inspiration and congratulations for the great chair transformation. Renovating or transforming a chair or furniture is such a great idea to considered because this means you have to brought-up your creative mind and at the same time you will save a lot of your money. Thanks for sharing this idea so that many will be inspired to do their own renovation and transformation.

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  7. Love this idea they look so good but it is now 2016 and I am just wondering how the paint has stood up? If they have stood the test of time I am so doing it! :) And even if they haven't I will still do it but not do the extra work of the cute embellishments. Thanks for sharing!

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  8. Very cute and creative Cherie. I too, sufferfrom chronic pain so completely understand what you are saying about trying to stay busy and creative which helps to take your mind off of the pain. I hope you find relief from that horrible pain, i am fighting it every day but try to stay busy with crafts and gardening, grandchildren and great grandkids too ! Best of luck to you .)

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