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Learning to upcycle and craft doesn’t come natural for some including myself. Although there is something I’m coming to understand; art and crafts don’t need to be perfect, if you’re trying that’s good enough. There’s multiple ways to do stuff not just one way.

When I saw this Ikea toddler table and chairs on my local Buy Nothing Facebook group I just knew I had to get it and upcycle it. I had my doubts about doing it myself, if I should just paint it and glue the cracks in the seat and call it good. Then I just decided I was going to not only paint it but put cushions and fabric on the seats, I was going all the way and not doubt myself. They turned out amazing, a few miner imperfections but perfect in my eyes. And it was so much easier than I thought it’d be.

This is what I started with, the seats had cracks all over and crayon/marker markings throughout the set. If you’re on Facebook and haven’t joined your local area’s Buy Nothing Group, I highly suggest joining. You can find or ask for many amazing things, not to mention meet your community members. 

After wiping the set off and removing some strips of tape that was on the chairs, I had to dismantle the chairs a bit. So, I grabbed an allenwrench, laid the chairs on the ground with the back to the ground and removed the two screws from the front. Those came off easy and then I slid the white seat board out. I measured the white square on the seat for where I’ll place the cushion and fabric. Then I headed to the local craft store, Hobby Lobby. Found the cutest fabric that matches Piper’s room perfectly, a yard was only $6 and the poly foam was $3.99. Keep in mind the fabric should be thin as it will be hard to replace.

For the foam, lay the seat board on the foam and cut with an exacto knife a straight line with the board. The foam should lay perfectly without extra hanging over. Then lay the seat board on the fabric and you want to leave about 2 inches extra on every side.

Now it’s time to put it together. Place your seat board, foam and fabric and grab your either glue or staple gun. Then you fold over the fabric to the bottom of the board and glue it to the board, it was very easy.

This was the most difficult part but was still easier to do than I thought it’d be. After your seat is complete and ready to be placed back, slowly slide it back in. This was a little difficult as you had to pound on it in a few places, that’s why it’s best to get very thin fabric. Be sure to take your time on this step because it can be easy to ruin the cheap wood. After it’s in, close it up with the allenwrench and you’re ready to paint.

Learn from my mistake unless you’re really good at painting, paint the chairs before you put the seat cushion on. Painting didn’t take very long and it was very easy. I painted on two coats, of the Mint Julep chalk paint and it dried very quickly.

Give it a little time to dry and then you’ve got a completed project. What a great and easy way to turn a plain table and chairs into a unique piece of furniture! I felt proud of the work I completed and that I saved this from being thrown into the landfill. Piper absolutely loves her little table and chairs, the seats are comfortable and it goes perfect in her room with her kitchen set.


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