Painting a Child-Sized Chair

How chalk paint saved these chairs from the trash

They were not pretty. They were badly dinged and banged and likely had been thrown around for a few years, literally.

They were unwanted. Ready for the trash.

No way, I said. These chairs still had a LOT of life left to live and I was ready to bring it back. Well, at least I would start with one and see how it went.

Today was the perfect day for painting as it has cooled off so much. Last week we were still getting temps in the high 80's and now it's sweatshirt weather! This is my first Fall in TN so I'm not sure quite what to expect...everyone says the weather can flip flop back and forth but I think Fall might be here to stay this time...I hope so! I'm ready to start making all my favorite soups!!

Sorry for the rabbit trail; back to the project...

I didn't bother sanding because there were so many gouges. Well, I take that back. One of the rungs was missing and where it had come away from the back legs there were some sharp pieces of wood so I sanded those smooth. Didn't want anybody hurting themselves, after all.

I painted two coats of creamy white chalk paint and I sanded it smooth. It was looking a whole lot better but a little boring.

I've seen so many cute chairs with grain sack stripes and dipped legs so I decided to do both. Frog tape is great for this because it's sticky without being overly tacky so you can be confident you won't remove paint when you pull it up. I taped off the stripes where I wanted them and also taped around the legs. I used some leftover wall paint in a grey-blue color, and immediately pulled up the tape.

Once it was completely dry, I lightly sanded around the edges so it didn't look too perfect. This is an old, imperfect chair after all :)

A light coat of wax and a buff and it's all done. Quite an improvement, wouldn't you say??

It is so adorable now!!

The stripes were so easy to do, but make a HUGE improvement in the overall look! I love how it mimics the antique grain sacks from Europe. And check out the little dipped legs...

Who you calling a dip??  Haha sorry, couldn't resist! It looks like I literally "dipped" the legs in paint.

Right now I'm using the chair as a plant stand in our piano room. This is actually the wall paint that I used on the chair. It will likely stay here until I finish it's "brothers & sisters".

I wonder if I should paint them in matching stripes but different colors?? Or go with something totally different. Hmmm.

Here's a little reminder of where this chair started and where it's come...

I'm so glad I saved them from the dumpster. Lots of life left, wouldn't you say?

Have you saved anything from being thrown out and given it a new life? I'd love to hear about it.

This Project was Featured at:
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  1. Oh so cute...I am obsessed with grain sack stripes right now. I may need to find some old trashed chairs and try this myself. Thanks for the frogtape tip. I always have issues painting and taping but I will give that tape a try! I found your post on coastal charm If you have a minute check out the storage bench I made at
    Thanks for the great post!!

    1. The frog tape is a wonderful assistant when going for a crisp edge! Thanks for stopping by :) I'm heading over to check out your storage bench!

  2. Super cute idea! Love the stripes and the dipped legs - they work together perfectly!

    1. Thanks Sharon! It needed a extra dose of "cuteness" and I think the stripes and dips did the trick :)

  3. Love, love, LOVE this! I actually just did a piece with grain sack stripes and another with dipped legs-- we must be on the same wavelength! ;) Thanks for linking up at Get Your DIY On, Cindy!

    ~Abby =)

    1. Hahaha, yes...great, creative minds do think alike :) I'd love to see your chair Abby!

  4. I like this a lot! Stripes on a chair, what a good idea. I'm thinking I will look for little kid's chairs and give this a try next summer when the garage sales are up and running. Check out my Great Aunt's nightstand that I redid with my daughter. It's amazing how easy it is to fix something someone else would pitch -

    1. Thanks Val, I just hated to see these thrown away just because they were ugly! Can't wait to check out your nightstand :)

  5. Well, Cindy. You inspired me. I was at Goodwill today and found 5 little oak kids' chairs for $18. Three of them are taller than the other two. I thought of you and your post and bought them! One is staying here at Grammie's house and the others are getting painted for a craft show I'm doing in December. I'll give a hollar when they're done and I've posted the project. I painted an antique adult sized chair and used it as a prop on my fall porch. Here's the link: Happy painting! (Loved your PIano Room reveal.)

    1. Yay Val, great buy! And if you paint them all either the same color or with the same theme, they'll look adorable as a set! I can't wait to see them :) Btw, I'm still looking for a little table to go with my chairs...


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