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other recent LOUNGE articles:
o The Furniture Facelift Fiasco, part I 
Minor Makeover Miracles  
Handy Household Tools  

o Lighten Up!  

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the Furniture FACELift Fiasco, a cautionary tale 
in two parts
: PART II | 1 2 3 4 

Last time we saw our chair, it was in a dis-assembled state of chaos Ė boasting a brand-spanking new pecan-colored tan (see part I: re-finishing) but still missing its cushions. The second half of the great furniture facelift: decking out the cushions in a bold and sexy red, then reuniting them with their wooden frame.

PART TWO: Re-Upholstering
The old upholstery was that sort of nubby, beige-ish tweed material that was, for some unfathomable reason, a popular choice for furniture in the 70s. Why anyone would choose to cover something that has to touch your body in a rough, scratchy texture is beyond me Ė even if it hadnít been old and filthy, I would have wanted to replace it with a more appealing fabric that didnít make my skin itch.

Having set my heart on re-upholstering in a deep red color, I headed on over to my favorite cheap fabric store. I knew that I wanted a fabric that was neither too thin (I didnít want it to be see-through, after all), nor too thick (the stiffness of a very heavy fabric would make it too difficult to wrap smoothly around corners). I avoided the more expensive "upholstery fabrics" (the relatively small size of my chair cushions meant that I didnít require the greater width offered by these fabrics, anyway), and ended up finding a medium-weight fabric with a nice smooth texture in the perfect shade of (non-orangey) red. At $2.99 a yard, it was a real bargain, to boot.

Let me note here that, standing at the measuring counter with my bolt of fabric in hand, I suddenly realized that I had completely neglected to measure my chair beforehand. I therefore had to estimate Ė nothing unusual for me in and of itself, but made more difficult since I lacked the benefit of having the chair right in front of me -- how much fabric Iíd be requiring. Figuring that over-estimating would be much smarter than under-estimating, I purchased 3 yards of the fabric. This turned out to be much more than sufficient (well over a yard more than sufficient, actually.) Iím planning to use the extra fabric to make some cloth napkins, so it actually worked out quite well. Nonetheless, Iíd recommend that if youíre going to be doing this, plan ahead better than I did and take the tape measure to your chair before you head to the fabric store.

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