Tuesday, November 1, 2016

BLC Day 1: Saving My Bum

I recently shared with you that my Sewing Room serves many functions, including where I manage my household affairs, so it's fair to say my office chair and desk has received lots of use since purchasing them in 2006 and '07 respectively.  My desk, purchased on Target.com, was part of their "Our House" collection and I liked its streamlined appearance and function, plus the approximate $99 price tag was right up my alley.  At the time of my purchase, this furniture line was being discontinued and the only color available was white, so I knew I'd be painting it black as soon as it arrived.

Images taken in 2012

The chair was purchased from Art Van, a well-known furniture store in the Midwest.  I think I paid about $100 for the chair - a price I would never ever pay again for a similar item.  Hindsight is 20/20, right?  Anyway, the seat bottom flattened out significantly over the years.  In fact, I've had several "Princess and the Pea" moments because I could feel the hardware through the seat cushion whenever I sat in the chair.  It is, however, in otherwise good condition, so I decided to simply replace the seat padding.

The space between my desk and chair is one of Max's favorites.

Please note - if you decide to replace foam padding in your furniture, I would highly recommend measuring your seat cushion to determine the foam padding size you'll need to purchase.  I didn't and had to do a little bit of piecing.

After purchasing new foam padding and packaged batting from JoAnn Fabrics about two weeks ago, I removed the seat from the chair frame to assess its condition.  As you can see, the seat front is very flat compared to the left, right and back sections.  I then began disassembling the chair seat, taking note of its construction so I could reassemble with the new padding in place.

I removed all the labels on the chair's underside, and then the staples holding down the dust cover.

I could see cording was used to anchor the padding to the wooden seat base.  I marked the seat base front so I'd be able to easily identify it during reconstruction, and continued removing staples used to attach the seat fabric.

Once the fabric was released, I was able to remove the wooden base from the seat and see how everything was constructed inside.

The original padding literally started crumbling during the deconstruction.

I noticed the original padding was contoured to match the decorator fabric's panels...

...and a strip of padding wrapped around the wooden base...

...and along the metal brace to which the arm rests are attached.

I measured the old seat padding depth in a lesser-worn area to make certain the padding I purchased would fit the bill.

Once all the former padding was removed, I was able to measure the seat base width and depth so I could trim the new padding to fit.

seat base width

seat base depth

When I measured the new padding dimensions, I discovered its depth was slightly narrower than the base and would have to be pieced.  I determined the piecing would be best positioned at the rear of the seat where it would receive less wear.

available padding width

available padding depth, at least a 1/2-inch shorter than needed
I decided to cut the width slightly wider than the wooden base to ensure a snug fit, used my VersaTool hot blade attachment to cut through the padding and positioned it in the base to test fit.

I marked the padding underside to cut it to the shape of the seat base and used the hot blade to trim away the excess.

With the leftover padding from the width, I added a length to the seat rear so it would measure up to the depth needed and trimmed it to match the wooden base shape.

I cut strips of the packaged batting and attached it all around the wooden base edge.

I also added batting to the metal brace.

Using a long needle and the VersaTool soldering tip, I marked and made holes in the new seat cushion so the anchor cording could run through.

I marked the approximate areas where the top fabric panels would meet the new padding, and used the soldering tip make the panel contours in the padding.

For extra loft, I added a layer of batting the the seat top.

Using my loop turner, I pulled the anchor cording through the holes located in the new padding...

...and slipped everything back into the original fabric cover, followed by the wooden seat base and then anchored the cording using staples.

I then began securing the decorator fabric to the seat base using staples...

...and reattached the dust cover and labels.

I checked the seat appearance with the new padding, and then reassembled the chair.

It almost looks brand new, and more importantly - my bum is no longer feeling hardware when I sit.

Be blessed!



  1. Wow! That was a lot of work, but looks so worth it! Great job Aisha!

    1. Thank you, Myra. It was time consuming - especially removing all of those blessed staples - but it went smoother than I expected.