Wednesday, December 19, 2018

The Egg Chair

We've realized early on that our cottage style furniture will look out of place in our new mid-century modern home.  But according to Emily Henderson (my favorite design guru) furnishing a large house costs upwards of $200,000 (gulp!!) and that certainly isn't realistic for our place!  We're too busy buying windows and toilets!!

So, I've started scouting for deals.  I picked up some very cool chairs at a yard sale (yup, that works with my budget).  And I've been scouting outlet stores and clearance sales for serious bargains.

And then I read about a mega Yard Sale that was held to benefit reuniting families that have been separated.  A sale and a cause?  Well that's pretty cool.  So I headed over - making sure I was one of the first people to walk through the door.

That's when I saw this chair.  I'm pretty sure it's a copy of Arne Jacobsen's Egg Chair.  Designed in the 50's, it was created for his hotel design of Royal Copenhagen hotel (Architectural Digest recently did a big story on it - https://www.architecturaldigest.com/story/the-story-behind-the-iconic-egg-chair).  And it is so darned cool!!

There was just one problem.  It's purple.  Not a soft, pretty lavender, but a bright, in your face purple.  And I HATE purple.

But for $195, how could I say no?  So I paid up and loaded it in my mom-van to bring it home.

He likes it!
Normally, my husband Richard is not quite as excited about my bargains as I am.  But in this case, he too was smitten with the uber cool design (and the fact that it was a great deal).  He also really liked the color.

Now I should mention, Richard is color blind.  But for some weird reason, purple is a color he can see pretty well.  And when you're from New Orleans and have a family that is obsessed with LSU, purple is a pretty popular color.  He pointed out that we could get a gold pillow and he could use it to watch LSU football games.

This is not going to happen.....

So I'm looking for help.  The fabric is a beautiful wool mohair, the color just needs to change.  Does anyone have any experience dying upholstery?  I've read articles that say chalk paint is fantastic.  And other articles that say chalk paint is horrible.  I've also read about spray dye made especially for upholstery fabric.  But have any of you experimented?  Any real experience and dos/don'ts would be appreciated!

I figure I don't have anything to lose.  I can try changing the color and if that doesn't work, maybe I'll have to figure out how to re-upholster it.

Thanks!


Pin It

16 comments:

  1. Dharma makes dyes for wool and other fibers. Here's a page that discusses airbrushing wool upholstery: https://www.dharmatrading.com/paints/dyeing-and-or-painting.html?lnav=paints.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh thanks for the link! It's a great resource!!

      Delete
  2. Maybe you could just a throw in a color you like over it. That won't change the texture of the material and your husband could uncover it at the appropriate LSU times.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Reupholster it. Problem solved. If you don’t know how, take a class.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I'd say reupholster it. It's a pretty simple design. I don't think the intense purple will take dye well and will end up a muddy brown. Paint is just going to flake off and leave a nasty mess.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Reupholstering an egg chair (or a knock-off) is actually pretty tricky, because the surface is almost entirely curved. There are a few how-to videos on YouTube but they're mostly by professional upholsterers/ furniture restorers, and involve things like stretching and gluing fabric (pattern-cut from original upholstery) to fit the curves, and hand-stitching the seams along the arms. It might be a job for the pros - though even sending it to a pro is going to be cheaper than buying a $1,200 original chair in a color they can live with!

      Delete
    2. Excellent points!! I took an upholstery course several years ago and have done a few chairs, but this seems like an advanced project!!

      Delete
  5. If you do decide to dye it, keep in mind that the color is going to have to be darker than the original purple (so, deep indigo, charcoal, cocoa brown, black). If you want to go lighter, fabric paint or reupholstering are likely your options there. If you think they will get a lot of use, I'd go with new upholstery, as dyed fabric can show uneven wear patterns eventually. A good wool upholstery can wear like iron. Good luck!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for the tip! I was thinking about a charcoal color!

      Delete
  6. Hi Laurel - If you reupholster, all of the discontinued fabrics at Robert Allen Outlet are 75% off clearance prices until 12/21 https://robertallenoutlet.com/index.aspx. Also, http://iluvfabrix.com is a great resource for high end fabrics at discount prices.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for the tip!!! I figure I can try dye/paint first and if that fails, I'll go the reupholstery route!

      Delete
  7. I have no idea if this idea is feasible or not, but maybe professional carpet dyers could update the chair for you? My inclination would be to try to dye or paint the chair before attempting to reupholster...but that is because I think the shape of the chair will make upholstering it a challenge. Wool stretches and shrinks....so I think the air brush or paint sprayer method would be my first choice. Good luck and keep us posted!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Hi - I think I remember from past posts that you have family in the Atlanta area. There is a young man who sells mid century and similar era furniture here in Atlanta that you might be interested in for your home. He is John Bailey @atlantausedfurniture on Instagram. It’s intriguing to see your process with your current home after following so many of the past designs. Happy holidays!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Aileen! I'll check him out on my next trip!

      Delete
  9. I have tried chalk paint and painting fabric. Both were duds. Dont bother it flakes or it comes off on the clothes of the people who sit in it. Myself I would go for new fabric on it. but that comes at a price... Can you live with it and see if it grows on you?

    ReplyDelete
  10. Maybe I am the only one, but I would embrace the purple. Its a good purple as they go and feels very true to the time. I could see it paired with a Calder mobile. I understand the personal distaste, I feel irrationally opposed to most greens. But if you aren't living with it, it is worth the change?

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...