Charming Painted Upholstered Chair

I have jumped on

                                the band wagon of

painted upholstered chairs

                      that are out there on other blogs.

Doesn't that just sound crazy?

But I had to give it a try and I'll admit,
                it came out lovely!

Shall we begin? Here is what the chair looked like when I purchased it at a garage sale.
I asked my daughter if she wanted it and she said if I take the 'old lady' look out of it!

What put me over the top, to go ahead and paint this chair, was a video. I am sorry to say, I don't remember what blog this was on, but she painted a chair, seat and all, then did a video of her 5 year old son jumping up and down on it. It did not crack. It feels like leather if you take the time to sand in between each coat. And I don't know what time and use will do with this chair now that it is painted, but it is very comfortable to sit on.

It was sturdy and the upholstery was in good shape. I thought of re-upholstering the whole thing but talked myself out of it because of all the tufting required. Instead, I opted for just upholstering the seat cushion and making a lumbar pillow.
I researched other painted chairs out on blogland and here is what I did,

First, vacuum the upholstery
2nd, Apply a coat of primer latex paint all the while spritzing with a spray bottle of water. This will allow you to be able to easily spread the paint on the upholstery.
3rd, sand with 220 grit sandpaper, it will keep the painted upholstery smooth and it sands easily.
4th, mix equal parts textile medium (found in small bottles at the hobby stores and Walmart by the acrylic paint...it keeps the paint pliable), white latex paint (I used semi gloss trim paint to get this sheen) and water. This has a very runny consistency and paints in minutes.
5th, sand after it dries.
6th, repeat step 4
7th, sand after it dries.
8th, mix equal parts textile medium and the same white latex paint but no water this time.
9th, sand after dries.
NOTE: After each step of the painting process, wait till the paint is dry before moving on to the next step. Any paint can be used but you may have to seal some way if using other types of paint.

It's as easy as that. It looks and feels like leather.

I got some dirty fingerprints on the painted upholstery as I was screwing the base of the chair back on but it wipes right off with a damp rag just like leather does.
Daughter approves and says that she will now take it home!
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  1. Dare I say it - awesome! You are so talented, I always admire your projects and keep coming back for more. I have been wondering about doing something similar myself for quite awhile, but I'm a chicken, what can I say. My main concern is whether the painted finish will hold up to wear and tear of normal use of the chair. Will the finish start to crackle and fall off in bits after awhile? Does painting it make the upholstery feel "hard" and not very inviting or comfortable? Is it just for show and should not be used as a real chair?

    1. Your questions can be answered by others that have painted upholstery and have had the time to see what will happen with use of their chairs. I know that this chair feels good to sit on and when touching and squeezing the back tufted area, it does not crack and feels like leather.

  2. I wish I was your daughter. smile It's beautiful and it does look like leather, I have a chair down in the basement which I'd like to do this to. I so have to try this!
    Pinning this:)

    1. I say, "go for it" since my chair came out so lovely and feels good to sit on. It really didn't take much paint either and I only used up two small bottles of textile medium.

  3. Stunning transformation! I love everything about it!

  4. I keep saying I'm going to try this, but so far haven't had the guts. Maybe I'll start small (like an upholsered stool) and see how it goes!

  5. Oh wow - what an amazing transformation! I have a chair that I inherited several years ago that I nervously had planned to paint next week. Thanks for giving me a boost of courage and inspiration!

  6. I love the chair, it came out so beautiful and I love the tutorial on how to do it, so much more detailed, the chair is fresh and beautiful, who wouldn't want such a lovely chair...Phyllis

  7. Wow, great transformation. Looks great. Love the fabric used on the seat.


  8. Woweeee it turned out beautiful ;)


  9. Oh wow! that turned out gorgeous!! I'm looking for a similar style chair.

  10. You did a wonderful Job... Love that fabric too :)

  11. Ok, now I'm convinced. I'm going to try this. You did an amazing job and definitely took the 'old lady' out of it. I have a chair in our bedroom that we call the Frazier chair because it's super ugly, but soon to be NO MORE!

    Stopping by from Throwback Thursday and happy to meet you (and can I say you join soooo many link parties! I'm in awe).

  12. I have painted two wing back chairs in black, both were plaid to begin with. I covered the seat cushions in black and white check and then I put a long runner over the back and under the seat cushion. I didn't sand and I think that makes a huge difference. Yours looks fabulous. Mine isn't perfect, but they served their purpose. My house is decorated much like yours, lots of Mackenzie childs pieces. Also did my outdoor furniture black with white polka dots

  13. I have to admit that I've never heard of painting an upholstered chair. I'm in awe! What a beautiful finished product! Thanks for sharing at Throwback Thursday!

  14. Great job! I love how this turned out!

  15. I have this EXACT same yellow-green chair that I pulled off someone's curb who had set it out for trash day earlier this summer. It's in great shape but just needs a makeover so badly! Thanks for giving me inspiration for what it can become! I'm glad you linked this up to Throwback Thursday. :)

  16. You did a fabulous job on this!! I have a friend who just used acrylic paint over chintz and it also came out great! I have to put this on my "to-do" list!

  17. This is such an amazing transformation! I really want to try this! Thanks for sharing.

  18. Judy @ Season of SweetsOctober 4, 2013 at 12:05 AM

    Wow! So glad I stopped by from Create It Thursday. Beautiful job! Your daughter is a lucky girl :)

  19. This is gorgeous! I keep seeing painted furniture around and I'm dying to try it!

  20. Your chair is amazing. I love your fabric choices and have been dying to try painting upholstery. I read a final wax coat makes it feel like leather. Wonderful Chair! No more old lady i there...

  21. What an amazing transformation. Please link to Throwback Thursday in a few months so that we can feature you. I'm sharing your awesome work on my Facebook page today. I hope you'll stop by to like it!

  22. This is absolutely amazing! You completely inspired me to get a "grandma chair" and make it look like new for my new house. Thanks for the tips!

  23. Terry I also painted a chair with chalk paint and I was very happy with the results. I love the way you combined the painted chair with the upholstered cushion. I think your chair looks fantastic... your daughter is lucky to have such a talented mom :)

  24. This is amazing Terry! I never knew it was possible to paint upholstery! Love it :-)

  25. This is beautiful!! I just saw a chair like this on Craigslist but passed it up b/c of the upholstery...may have to go back for a second look :) Did you wax it??
    Cindy @ Diy beautify

  26. This is awesome!
    Thanks for sharing.
    Hope to see you on my blog:)

  27. Shut the front door! That is insane awesome!

  28. Terry,
    Thanks for sharing this pretty painted chair...looks GREAT! I have a few chairs that I am going to try this method on.


  29. You did such a beautiful job. I will be featuring this tonight at my Fall into Fall party that opens at 8pm EST. Please stop by and pick up an I've Been Featured button. Thanks. http://diybydesign.blogspot.com

  30. What a great transformation! I'm featuring it in this week's PoPP Spotlight.

  31. love your painted chair I did that a couple years ago and still set in the chair
    I like how it looks like white leather

  32. Fantastic makeover! LOVE the color choices! Life to the full! Melissa @ DaisyMaeBelle

  33. What is textile medium and where would I buy it? Is that what gives the color?


  34. Oh my heavens!!! GORGEOUS!!!! May I ask tho, what sheen of latex paint did you use? (is this a dumb question?)

  35. Looks beautiful! Your choice of upholstery fabric is perfect.


  36. Love the chair! I bought the exact same chair at a local.thrift store and it sits in my daughter's room, still in all of it's orange velvet glory. The upholstery is not in great shape or I would be getting my paint brushes out now! Great job.

  37. I just wanted to let you know that I featured your wonderful project on homework. Thanks so much for sharing it on The Inspiration Board. Have a great weekend!

    homework &

  38. Wow! Very cool. Thanks for sharing with Silver Pennies Sundays. x

  39. This is fabulous! Just wanted to let you know that you were featured at Give Me the Goods. Congratulations! Please stop by and grab a button. :)

    Rachel @ Maison de Pax

  40. I love this! After step 9 is there anything else you do? I should have that same sheen after the final sanding? No wax or sealant put on it? What grit sanding paper did you use? Does it matter what type of fabric it is? Sorry for all the questions but I'm very curios to try this myself. Thanks for the inspiration!!!

  41. Great job! The chair looks stunning after your work. You have done a good jov with this chair. I can't even think of doing something of this sort on my own.


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