I am so excited to have finally finished my Louis XVI style chairs. It was such a pleasure to work on these pieces, especially knowing they will be adorning my own dining room.
I told you how I acquired the chairs in a previous blog post, so now let me tell you about my creative process to get them from the before…. to where they are now!
By now you might have guessed who it is that’s coming to dinner…
Let me tell you about my creative journey with these chairs.
First of all, it is much easier to find the fabric and then match the paint or stain to it, rather than the other way around. That being said, it didn’t work out that way for me. I opted to not touch the wooden frame, but instead to embrace the original glaze, so it was up to me to find a fabric colour that worked with the glaze.
Every time I was out and about I found myself in thrift and fabric stores hoping the perfect print and colour would jump out at me. I would come home with samples of fabric swatches of new fabric, and occasionally I would find beautiful pieces of vintage fabrics or curtains that had been donated to thrift stores. But when I held each piece up to the chairs it was an obvious mismatch.
Then, one day at a a thrift store, I found two custom-made drape panels in a beautiful pink, cream, green, and robin’s egg blue floral pattern. When I got them home and held them against the chairs it was a match made in heaven!
I went to work on reupholstering the top front and the top back of the chairs, and I continued to keep my eye out for the perfect fabric to be used on the seats. I carried a swatch of the floral fabric in my purse so I was always prepared when I ventured into fabric or thrift stores. After a lot of looking, I found the perfect upholstery fabric for the seat in a robin’s egg blue and cream pattern. The chairs came together and I couldn’t be happier with how they turned out.
I love everything about the chairs, from the worn glaze, the proportion of the seat and back, the detailing on the legs, the stately look of them, the soft colour scheme, and the placement of the florals.
If you look closely you will notice that no two chairs are the same on both the top front and top back. That is part of the creative process I love — fabric placement. The chairs also scream French County, a style I love and appreciate.
As I had promised to do, I sent a photo of the completed chairs to the woman I purchased them from. I ask her if I could share her reaction to seeing the chairs completed because it filled me with such joy. Here is what she said: “Lisa— those are fantastic!!! They got such a bougie transformation, you did an amazing job, they are gorgeous.” And then, “I am so glad they went to you, and you made them magic. They certainly deserved it and you are so talented, they look so high end!!”
A reaction like that pushes me to continue wanting to rescue old, neglected chairs and give them new life. So, now that this project has been completed, I am looking forward to tackling the next one!