Grab that summer wicker chair from the sun porch, and get ready to merge these recycled materials for a fall fashion “No Sew Boho” chair makeover, EXCLUSIVE from expert indie furniture redesigner Jeanne Connolly of Vintage Renewal!
The first step is finding your fall color inspiration. Forget those color wheels! Go on outside for a hike. Let mother nature tell you what looks best together.
This project is meant to be fun and to get your creative juices going. All you need is your camera, a wicker chair, a closet to raid and the ability to tie knots to complete this simple, yet elegant bohemian luxe style for fall.
I chose a Peacock shaped Rattan chair with a woven wicker back for my makeover. If your chair has been used like mine was, than you’ll need to do some easy cleaning to get it ready for the redesign. I used a scrub brush along with a product called Wood Renew and water to clean my wicker chair up for painting. A solution of equal parts bleach and water would work just the same if you do not have Wood Renew for the project. Make sure to use gloves to protect your hands. Clean it thoroughly and let it dry for approximately 24 hours. Then prepare the surface for paint with a surface prep like TSP. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
Once the surface has been prepped for paint, take some of nature’s inspiration with you down to your local home improvement store to pick out your paint color.
I used a stick for my chair color inspiration. Since this project is all about color and texture, I decided on a metallic nickel finish for the chair color. To save time, I decided to spend more money on a spray paint that also doubled as a primer. It was money well spent! If you do not buy a primer and paint combo than you will need to take the separate steps to prime, than paint your surface area.
My chair makeover called for 6 cans of spray paint to complete. You can judge your own needs based on the size of your chosen project chair. Apply several thin coats and let dry in between sprays.
Now you are ready to take out those scarves and cami’s and get to work. Cut your recycled materials into strips approximately 2.5” wide and as long as the material will allow. Since this is a fun, stress free, redesign, there are no exact measurements to follow. Just start making strips and I’ll walk you through the rest.
You will want to use a fresh rotary blade with a rotary cutter for this project. I selected a blade with a decorative edge, but this is not necessary for the same end result. The most important thing is that you have a sharp fresh rotary blade before you begin.
Grab your first strip of material and use your scissor to cut the end of the scarf approximately 3 inches. You will use this cut area to make a knot around your wicker. Don’t tie it yet, just cut approximately 3 inches in.
Now the fun begins! You can decide on how much material you want to use to bring the color and texture into your own design. I decided on a diagonal start.
Take your “cut end” and make a knot around the wicker and through the back of the chair, keeping your long strip on the front side of the chair. Then start weaving your material through the wicker in the direction that you find the most appealing for your specific chair.
I went on the diagonal with my design. I just followed the lines of the chair. It’s super easy! You can decide just how far you want your own design to go. When your material strip is getting down to the end. Snip it again and tie it off around the wicker and out the back of the chair again.
That’s all there is to it! Keep cutting strips and tying them off until you fall in love with your chair all over again.
This project is meant to allow you to take this concept and apply it directly to the materials and chair that you choose to use for your makeover. Most importantly, it’s meant to be fun and to inspire you to see your old materials in a new way. Add high style to your home using what you already have or by hunting through your local thrift store and bringing their recycled materials back to life in a new way!
Here is the finished result:
You can take a winter scarf and wrap it around the base of the chair and use a faux sheep skin to add some bohemian style and replace that drab cushion.
Another idea is to drape a shawl down the one side of the chair:
If you like the idea of reuse and redesign and want to learn more, Indie Redesigner Jeanne Connolly of Vintage Renewal wants to show you how you can save the earth one redesign at a time! Follow this link to learn more about her exciting project!
For more information about Jeanne Connolly and more tips for repurposing your favorite vintage finds, check out her designer profile in Flea Market Decor’s upcoming Spring 2013 issue, coming to a newsstand near you in January 2013!
Written, styled and photographed by Jeanne Connolly
Edited for the web by Elaine K. Phillips