Jun 13, 2011

Extreme Makeover: Ugly Chair Edition

Five years ago or so my in-laws gave Paul and me a wine fridge.  And it was great- we kept it well stocked and it was nice to have.  But about a year ago or so we noticed that the motor had died.  So what it became was a large black box, that held a few bottles of wine but didn't keep them cold, and that took up a lot of space in the corner of our dining room. 

You can sort of see it in the corner of the room behind the table- it has a candelabra on top in this photo:

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We hated to get rid of it since it was a gift, but I hated even more the fact that it took up so much space and was no longer useful, so I finally convinced Paul to donate it to the side of the road (where someone pulled over and took it away in less than thirty minutes, even with a sign saying it didn't work). 

For a while I've been wanting to get LP a little table and chairs to put in that corner of the room, somewhere for him to color and eat his snacks. 

The last time we visited my parents in Pennsylvania we came home with two of the ugliest chairs (a third remains in PA).  These chairs originally came from the nursery school we went to as kids (if any of you readers went to College Hill Presbyterian Nursery School you might recognize them in all of their orangey loveliness!).  The Nursery School must have gotten new chairs at some point and we ended up with 3 of the old ones, one for each of us kids.  One rainy day we decided to paint them in order to personalize each chair.  The result being that the chairs ended up even uglier than before.

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They were good sturdy chairs though, so I set about trying to rescue two of them.  I first attempted to strip the paint off, only to find out that under the thick coat of orange was an equally thick coat of hospital green.  After a few hours of chipping away at it I busted out the circular sander and whipped the rest of the paint off in no time.

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I then painted the chairs (ok, I'll be honest- I painted one chair.  The other is still sitting in the garage waiting to be finished.  I only have one kid so I only really needed one chair for now.  The other will be painted eventually so LP's friends can sit at the table too) in a flat black so that they'd blend in with the decor (although Thomas the Train blue was requested).

And look how great it turned out!  I picked up the table at Ikea and it all fits perfectly in the corner of the dining room, with plenty of space for LP's coloring books and crayons on top.

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Of course, I couldn't just leave the chairs plain so I pulled out some vinyl and my Silhouette SD and cut out LP's name in a cool train font I found online to decorate the back:

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LP absolutely loves his new table and chairs! He spent about an hour coloring and ate his lunch there yesterday too. 

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We're trying to foster a bit more independence in LP, so after lunch he was asked to bring his dishes over to the counter and to wipe off his table and chair- things that aren't as easy for him when he's sitting in his booster seat at the big table. 

I love how excited he is to have his very own table and chair and to be able to color whenever he wants (as long as he follows the "only color in your coloring books or on the paper" rule)!

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