Barrel chair re-upholstered and re-finished

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Project by tswoodwizard posted 01-13-2011 09:07 PM 2624 views 0 times favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Ok.. This is the project. An old tattered victorian chair valuable to the client because it was handed down by great grandma.

So, first rip off the old pink fabric and pull off the rusted tacks(some of which were missing). To match the decent tacks that were salvageable, first I bought tacks of a similiar design with the same new brass finish. But there was a problem, the new brass finish didn’t match the aged brass on the old tacks. Tapping into my arsenal of chemical’s, I tried perma blue gun blueing paste. I then painted a coat on the new tacks and waited fifteen minutes.

Next, I rinsed off the gun blueing while agitating it with a white china hog bristle brush and dried it off with a soft clean cloth. I then chased off all the remaining water with air pressure.

Next step was to seal the patina in with clear polyurethane spray coat and they turned out identical to the old tacks.

Using a divider, I spaced all tack positions on the trim strip evenly. Tapped them in with a setting tool to avoid marring the refinished walnut wood.

The whole chair turned out even better than I expected and the client was very happy; so was great grandma.

Problem solved.

-- Tim B. Sweely Elizabeth, Illinois, -------- My potential is limited only by my emagination.

2 comments so far

View lightweightladylefty's profile


3238 posts in 3707 days

#1 posted 01-14-2011 03:53 AM


Wonderful restoration of a very lovely chair. Your precision in matching and placing the tacks is commendable. You are a true craftsman.

I have a old channel-back wing chair that I’ve been promising hubby for years that I would reupholster but haven’t yet gotten around to it yet. This should be an encouragement to me! Thanks for posting.


-- Jesus is the ONLY reason for ANY season.

View Ted Pagels's profile

Ted Pagels

63 posts in 3057 days

#2 posted 01-14-2011 10:47 PM

Great Job! I love the fabric selection!

-- Ted Pagels, Green Bay, WI

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