Sunday, March 16, 2014

Evolution of a Chair

"Doesn't it look beautiful," I said to lifting the chair out of the convertible.
"Yes," Mr. Wonderful said smiling in the driveway.
"The new fabric makes it pop!"
"Yes."
"I can't wait to sit in it!"
"You and someone else..."

I didn't have time to contemplate who he was talking about. But yes, not only did my spouse and I fix up The House, the Guesthouse and the backyard birdhouse, we even fixed up some of our furniture. There are few joys like taking an old piece of furniture, reupholstering it and making it a new piece of furniture.


The chair in question was given to me by a friend whose mother had gotten it at a Hollywood garage sale some years ago. It had a metal frame and was covered in a faded brown vinyl fabric. Why would someone cover a chair in vinyl? My friend's mom paid $45 for the secondhand piece and estimated that it dated to the 1950s or even late 1940s. Since she never used the chair, she gave it to her daughter who felt the same way about it and gave it to me. I loved the lines on it and had a vision of what I wanted. I drove to Downtown Los Angeles where fabric stores are as plentiful as sand on Long Beach and within 10 minutes I found the fabric: A western theme in red, blue and white wool.

The upholsterer did an excellent job removing the vinyl back and seat and recovering it with the western fabric. The whole chair really popped! I sat on it. Firm, functional and beautiful. I loved it!

Some evolutions happen quickly. My chair evolved from a garage sale find to a conversation piece overnight! 

After work I met my friend for coffee to thank her for the chair and tell her how well it turned out. She was gracious saying how happy she was that I enjoyed it so much.

When I got home that night Mr. Wonderful met me at the door. 
"You have to see where the cat is." He led me to the room with my gorgeous western chair and there was our feline. Lounging on it, fur all over it, exposed claws which had been sharpened on it.
My heart sank.
"My chair! But I love sitting in it!"
"I told you you wouldn't be the only one."



Evolutions are slow: Neanderthals evolved into homo sapiens over thousands of years. 
I evolved from a wine novice to a knowing wine drinker in a couple years. 
My chair evolved from garage sale find to conversation piece to cat scratcher in one weekend! 

If I'd had a firmer fabric maybe Jackson wouldn't have attacked my chair. Or may he would have. There's only one thing I know for certain: next time I recover that chair it's going to be in vinyl!