Refinished and Re-caned Chairs

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Project by BobTheFish posted 09-10-2011 04:04 AM 2690 views 1 time favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I was recently given three chairs which had been readied for trash collection after many years of abuse and neglect, not to mention a number of rainstorms.

The person whom gave them to me was simply curious as to what I might be able to do.

As you can see the caning on two of them was completely shot, and the third had been sealed over with some decorative upholstery tacks and a sheet of badly stained luan plywood (which was seriously water damaged).

So I cleaned them up, stained them heavily with Minwax’s Sedona Red (I wanted a red stain, but wasn’t really concerned with covering up the rather blah grain of the not so great quality wood [seriously ugly knots on a few parts, no really marked grain, and its only great quality was that it wasn’t rotting and still pretty stable] ) and sealed them many times over with wipe on poly. a sand down to 600 grit, and them another coat of poly.

Finally I recaned the chairs with some medium sized bleached white cane (the gentleman I got ahold of by calling the number on this site : was EXTREMELY helpful, and even was able to throw together a starter kit for me with the white cane, which isn’t available otherwise. If you’re looking to re cane a chair, I recommend them).

The instructions for caning and other woven seating styles is difficult to find. The instruction book was only moderately helpful so I ditched it in favor of this site:

Another great source for other weavings was this:

Amazingly the only sources for this information I found that were even halfway useful came from college sites..

In any case, thanks for looking, and hopefully all this will help others with their caning projects.

4 comments so far

View DaddyT's profile


267 posts in 3505 days

#1 posted 09-10-2011 05:52 AM

Wow! Great job on the refurbish

-- Jimi _ Measure twice, cut once.......@#%#$@!!!......measure twice, cut....

View dustbunny's profile


1149 posts in 3290 days

#2 posted 09-10-2011 10:55 AM

What a difference a little TLC can make.
These look super, I’ll bet the original owner was surprised ?


-- Imagination rules the world. ~ Napoleon Bonaparte ~

View BobTheFish's profile


361 posts in 2547 days

#3 posted 09-10-2011 11:56 PM

Thanks guys.

I don’t know how the original owner will react. They’re on vacation for two weeks. We’ll see soon enough. :)

View HorizontalMike's profile


7755 posts in 2909 days

#4 posted 10-03-2011 10:46 PM

Well done Bob! Times THREE!

Some 30+ years ago I re-caned an old rocker for my sister and remember the challenge it presented me at the time. Thanks for sharing.

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

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