The Berr Chair (Phase I)

(Pronounced The 'Bear' Chair).  This is the (beginning of a) story about a lone, antique, Belgium school chair...and me...and the family it belongs to.  You see we are good friends to an amazing family who happened to have a chair sitting around that, well, was quite past it's prime.  I was over babysitting one day when I laid my eyes on the tired little chair and (of course) started dreaming of how it could be made 'young' again.  I didn't know what they had planned for it but, for lack of projects going on at our house, I asked if I could refinish it for them.  To my joy and surprise, they said they would love it if I did.  Home came the little chair with me and off went my mind reeling with different colors and fabrics.  Here it is, tired and worn out from the past century:

After removing the old seat (which will return in cushy cuteness), I grabbed some sand paper that had been left over from a Vacation Bible School project and took the project outside.  In order for the paint to stick, I needed to sand down the chair just enough to get most of the existing varnish off (which had already been mostly scratched off by years of use...and Belgium kids who needed their little fingernails clipped). 

Sanding can make quite the mess, so doing it outside makes clean up a lot easier. 
After the "Berr Chair" was sanded enough, I wiped it down with a damp cloth.  I didn't use too much water to wipe it down because too much could warp the 'naked' wood.  The damp cloth, rinsed out a few times, was all I needed to get all the sanding powder off so that it didn't get mixed in the paint.

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Next time on "Bean In Love":  See the "Berr Chair" go to 'prime time' and get the fresh coat of paint it's been waiting decades for!

Also, stay tuned and find out what color we decided to paint it and which of these three fabrics will allow for comfortable seating! 

1 comment

  1. Sheena,
    After sanding wood, you can use mineral spirits to "clean" the fine sand off. This is what Bob uses on gym floors and it works great! Be sure and let it completly dry before doing any more refinishing. Can't believe how good you are with all of this "stuff'! It's wonderful!
    Aunt Sue