Cane Chair Inspiration

While browsing Craigslist last week, I stumbled upon these two antique cane chairs for sale at a very reasonable price. I’ve been looking for something small scale, preferably a pair, and easy to reupholster. After emailing the seller, I thought these fit my requirements and she happened to live close by, so I schedule a time to go by and take a look.

Though not my preference, the gold velvety upholstery is in very good condition and there were just a few spots of wear in the caning. By the way, the seller had such a cute style. Check out the rug in the image below. I quizzed her on several things in her house and found out she’s pretty crafty.

The chairs now live at my house.



I’m trying to decide what to do next. Like most men, my husband thinks painting them would be unholy. But, have you ever met a man who thought painting dark wood was a good idea? I compiled a few ideas of reupholstered chairs and unpainted wood. Yawn. Kidding, I like the first option.


Images from: here, here, and here


Next, I thought about painting them white and adding a fun bold pattern. You can see a few fun inspiration images below.


Images from: here (original source unkown), here (original source unkown), here, here, source unknown, and here


Lastly, if I’m going to paint them, why not go bold? I love the mix of pattern on the green chair but I really dig the greenish yellow chair color.


Images from here (original source unkown), here and here (originally from Crate and Barrel, no longer on website).


For now, they actually look pretty good “as is” in our family room. I took the Richloom Invigorate Confetti pillows that I made¬† off of the sofa and adding them to the chairs for color… not too bad.



What would you do? Find a fabric that complements the wood, paint them white, paint them a bold color?

Linking to:
southern hospitality

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11 Responses to Cane Chair Inspiration
  1. Angela
    May 15, 2012 |

    I say paint them, paint them! I’m all about paint these days. I’ve actually gone a little crazy searching my house for things to paint. And I’d say use color something soothing or vibrant will work! The only problem is if you paint them you may find that you will need to recover them so it looks more coordinated. I know I’m no help. Can’t wait to see what you do!

  2. Rebecca
    May 16, 2012 |

    I think you could pull off the bold yellow with a new coordinating fabric. it would be a nice contrast if they’re staying next to the white cabinet.

  3. Natalie
    May 16, 2012 |

    I can’t decide :-(. I love the painted green ones in your pictures and that would be the color if I painted. The current stain finish looks in good condition and maybe if you just changed the fabric? Looking forward to seeing what you decide to do.

  4. I love, love, love the greenish-yellow chair! Paint ’em! They would look great cream or grey with a fun pattern on them in your living room!

  5. Cheltz
    May 16, 2012 |

    They really don’t look bad with the pillows! If it were me, personally, I would paint them (my husband be darned!) and reupholster them. Of course, they have to wait their turn in line, which means they’d live just like you have them for a year or two :).

  6. Kirby Carespodi
    May 21, 2012 |

    I found two of these chairs at a yard sale (and I’m attempting to reupholster them myself, which was a horrible decision) and I have painted and distressed the finish. I really like the way it looks.

  7. Marc Jones
    May 28, 2012 |

    The dark stain dates them, but that new paint especially in a bold new color with some graphic design fabric will give them a new modern twist and be the centerpiece of the room, paired with your white armoire, it will look stunning. If you choose to go white, do a lacquered finish and choose a graphic design fabric that has some crisp white in it. Good luck, it will be great!

  8. Barbara Bussey
    May 28, 2012 |

    Greetings, from California!,
    Great finds on Craig’s List! When you buy at such great prices, you can afford to experiment a bit. Upholstery is something different! I can’t do it myself and having it done can be pricey! The pea green option might clash with your beautiful wall color. I don’t know about the rest of the room, but red might be fun!
    Nice to meet you,

  9. Wanda
    May 28, 2012 |

    I love the chairs. I would paint them a shade darker or lighter than your walls.

  10. Reupholstering furniture
    April 16, 2013 |

    Also remove any foam or padding from the seat. I recommend
    starting high and then working low. If you’re looking for ways to keep your staff motivated, why not consider an office makeover.

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