Rocker Mountain High

Yep, it’s legal here in Colorado but this isn’t a pot post, so if you’re intrigued by the title alone and thinking that the following will be about ganja crafts, you will want to find another blog to entertain you for the next 5 minutes.  This is about a chair.

There is something so comforting to me about a rocking chair in a house.  More than likely I am just inherently nostalgic as I was a rocked baby, every night to M.A.S.H. reruns.  I may not remember the exact moments, but I must remember the soothing comfort for I have long desired a rocking chair of my own.  They are a symbol of simpler times, of relaxing and whittling on the porch, of embroidery in the evenings instead of a glaring television.  They are not complicated or padded or ergonomic, they just work without a ton of engineering.

Then one lucky day we came across a rocking chair for $10 at an antique store that seemed too good to pass up.  Structurally, the chair was still sound but the wood needed a bit of attention and it was desperately in need of a new seat.  With just a few materials and a few hours, we knew we could restore the chair to its former glory.

Before

Before

After about an hour of sanding by hand as a team, “You take the left side and I’ll take the right”, we had a pretty decent chair to spiff up.   Using leftover cans of stain from our former house-dwelling existence, we put a couple of coats on to restore the wood.  Side notes:  if you are looking to refinish a small piece of furniture, go to your local re-store (such as a Habitat for Humanity) for stains and finishes as there are always partially used cans for less than a dollar.  It saves you money, you won’t have your own leftover jar and it keeps yucky stuff out of landfills.  After the stain coats dried, we sealed the whole chair with a clear coat of polyurethane.  Again, you can easily get partially used cans of this around.

To replace the seat, we decided that instead of weaving a new one, we would make ours out of plywood, foam and fabric.  We cut a small piece of plywood to fit, cut foam to fit the plywood and wrapped fabric around the top of the foam to finish.  The fabric we used came from my stash (about a half yard) and is a nice wool Pendleton plaid.  We did a simple upholstery fold and attached to the bottom of the seat with upholstery tacks.  In order to secure it then secure the seat to the chair, we created some copper fasteners that we wrapped around the frame and screwed into the seat.  Because we are always looking to create and restore with the materials we have on hand, we only had to purchase the foam; however even if you had to purchase/collect everything needed, you are still looking at an affordable piece of furniture.

And After.

And After.

And now we have a rocking chair of our own! Although I still gravitate to the cushy armchair with my leisure activities, I love to see it being used in our household every morning by my sweetheart with his mug of coffee.  We have our own rocker in the mountains.

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