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Blogging about gardening in zone 4, marriage, our golden retriever and life in general.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Setting Up House: The Office, Part II

I inherited a crafting gene from my mother and grandmothers. Although she hasn’t had time to work on projects, my mom is a sewer. Both of my grandmothers are products of the Great Depression. Although they were in elementary school through the 1940’s, both are very thrifty and have a knack for turning something used into something useful.

I’m looking forward to putting my crafty gene to work on our house. I think the craft gene is next to the cheap gene? Maybe?

I’ve we've tackled setting up/ decorating the office first. Since we won’t receive many office-related wedding gifts, the office is the room that will change the least post-wedding. I’ve  shown you the basic idea for the office, and we’re making progress on it.

On Monday night DJ hung the shelves above the desk, as well as reinforced my desk. I dressed up a corkboard with some decorative ribbon and hung it above the desk. Dusty has named the desk area “Little Courtee’s Workstation” (in a sing-songy voice) and he seems to anticipate a number of Courtney-drawings in the corkboard.

Instead of drawings I started working out my creative drive on Tuesday night by taking apart one of the chairs my grandmother gave me in order to recover it. I saw this fabric on Sunday with DJ’s mom, and thought the green/ teal/ blue etc. would be a nice accent to the grey wall paint, the tan couch and the darker wood color of the desk. Hopefully the floral pattern isn’t too feminine for DJ’s taste.

Of course, you remember this chair:

Sorry for the weird lighting. Blackberry phone photo.

With exception of the back, the pink fabric was all attached to the chair with staples. I started by using a seam ripper to take apart the backing, which is the only piece of actual sewing on the chair. Then I ripped the stapled fabric off of the remainder of the chair, taking care to pull the staples out with a pliers and set them aside so no one stepped on them.

Yay taking apart old fabric!

I should add that Real Housewives of Orange County is good background noise while doing a project like this. Because I had to concentrate on the chair, I needed TV that required not a single brain cell!

Once I got down to the cushions of the chair, I assessed whether I should start over with new cushioning. My answer to that is I probably should, but I won’t. I don’t have the first clue what is appropriate for this chair, and it’s just easier to not mess with the current cushioning.

Yeah... I probably should have put new padding on... but I didn't.

I’m crafty, but not overly ambitious!

Once I’d taken all of the old fabric off of the chair, I spread out the two yards of new fabric I purchased (at half off Jo Ann Fabrics!) on the floor. I decided which way the pattern went (flowers up), and laid the old upholstery pieces out on the fabric as guides. I played around with which flowers I to capture for specific pieces, and then cut around the templates, adding about an inch to my cutouts as accident margin.

Once all of my new pieces of fabric were cut out, I laid them on the chair to see how they fit. Some additional scissor snips were needed to make the fabric fit around the arms. By the end of night one, my chair looked like this!

At some point I should have gotten a real camera out...

I just needed a staple gun to attach everything.

I stopped at ACE Hardware on my way home Tuesday night and purchased said staple gun. By 7pm I was off and running, stapling away. Despite cutting the fabric an inch larger on all sides than the templates, it seemed like I had to do a lot of pulling to get the fabric to stretch to the length I wanted. I wrapped it around the base of the chair and stapled it to the inside of the chair frame. This way the staples shouldn’t stand a chance of being visible.

Staple staple staple!
By the end of night two (Wednesday night), I’d stapled all of the fabric to the chair, with the exception of the back. I hand stitched the backing to the chair on Thursday, and was done!

Off center, camera phne photo.
I think the chair fits quite nicely into little Courtee’s workshop…

The next project is to repaint this white dresser a matching color of blue/ green, so we can use it for more storage. This dresser, oh the places it’s seen! I even dragged it back and forth from Kentucky with me…

Hmm... how to choose.
Have you used your winter evenings to get home improvement projects done?

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