Crafting with the Kourdoglous: Saucer Chair Makeover

Have you noticed that when you hit a certain age, your parents just start giving you their things?

 Furniture mainly.

Furniture you don't have the space for, but neither do they so they show up one day with it in their car and drop it at your house and it's suddenly your problem to feng shui.

That's how I came into ownership the saucer chair that sits in our living room. Charlie had stayed with my dad for a few weekends and apparently he loved sleeping in it – so when my dad moved, he decided Charlie (and therefore I) needed this saucer chair that he got when – I am not lying – some college student was moving out of their dorm and was donating it.

The chair before we made it pretty & after Charlie ripped the stuffing out of it.

The chair before we made it pretty & after Charlie ripped the stuffing out of it.

So it was dropped off and naturally, as he does, Charlie ripped a hole in it when he was nesting one day. (You might be saying – Rosemary! Get your dog's nails trimmed! To which I respond that I do, his nails aren't the issue it's his incessant digging in cheap fabrics to get comfortable.)  While it was adorable to come home to a sleeping Boston Terrier covered in fluff, it wasn't quite as funny when he burrowed into the chair cushion and couldn't get out. The chair cushion got added to the list of things to patch up.

 Mainly, the chair was just an eyesore to me. First off, it's a saucer chair. Secondly, the cushion is this cheap corduroy khaki fabric that is super comfortable if you are a dog, a cat or an aging hippie. For me, it's just kind of gross.

I didn't want to just toss the thing that brought my pets such joy though, I mean, I'm not a total monster. I figured that I could just refurbish it and one day it could have a great place in our future basement.

On our recent Ikea trip, I presented to Angelo a selection of pre-selected fabrics and told him to pick. (This is how we do things.) Naturally, he told me he didn't care and that I should pick, so I pressed him and forced him to make a decision. I just want him to be included. He just doesn't care about patterns. With a fabric selected, I snagged about four yards of it and headed home.

We then spent the rest of the weekend at his mom's and arrived home on Sunday to a clean apartment with a dumb cushion chair. 

"Let's make that cover," Angelo said to me, at 9:15 p.m. on a Sunday.

"You're insane," I said, changing into yoga pants.

We started out the process by popping on some background noise in the form of the Expendables 3. I don't know a single thing that happened in it, except that at one point Angelo said, "Oh no, they killed Terry Crews," but when I caught the last five minutes – Terry Crews was at a bar somewhere having a drink. So, yeah.

Angelo set to work patching up the holes that Charlie had torn, while I got out my trusty old sewing machine (a Viking Husqvarna 300 that I inherited from my grandmother) and set to work threading and filling bobbins. Let me just say, it may be a huge pain but always check your bobbins before you start a project. Make some backup bobbins. Just having them on hand will save you a headache.

We then brought out our Ikea fabric we snagged. Measuring it against the pillow, we realized the pillow was slightly bigger than we had realized. We made the decision to fold the fabric in half and sew up the sides. After that, we placed the cushion inside and sewed up the top.

At this point, Angelo explained to me that we needed to sew our cushion cover onto the actual cushion so that it would sit right (otherwise known as "tufting" which is a tedious process that knots up your stomach). He had mentioned this to me earlier on, and I had hoped that we didn't actually need to do it. But, he insisted and since Angelo is actually a little savvier than me when it comes to sewing – I took his word for it. We cross-stitched over the tiny indents where the original cover was sewn into the cushion.

With our cover now firmly held in place, we tucked in the four corners of our cover (like I said, we had just folded it in half to sew it, giving it a square shape). We quickly hemmed up the corners on the sewing machine, and voila! A brand new saucer cushion cover. And I still got to be in bed by 11 p.m.

The overall DIY was cheap and relatively easy, especially if you know your way around a sewing machine. If you don't, just take your time. Have a helper. Make sure your bobbins are full.