Rocking Chair Makeover – A story of 2 rocking chairs

This is a story of two rocking chairs…18 months ago Once upon a time, I spotted them driving by a yard sale – I may have shrieked and had the husband to pull over!! I ran across the road and asked the lady about the chairs… checked them for structural issues and ran back to the car for the money. I was so excited! I had just bought 2 little wood rocking chairs that would look amazing with a makeover I had brewing in my mind…

This is what the two looked like when I brought them home with me. The first one was bigger and very sturdy and just needed some paint to look good again. We will call it rocking chair A. The other one (with flowers painted on the back rest) was a little bit narrower and was going to be a little more challenging – the back spindles were coming out, the seat was made of a weird manufactured material that was flaking off. We will call it rocking chair B.

rocking chairs before

Rocking Chair Makeover – The before

The daughter picked purple for her chair (the larger one) and I picked a light blue for the other one (given that my then 10 month old son didn’t have much say at the time).

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To fix rocking chair B – I added wood glue to the spindles and put weight on them over night and hoped that would work given that clamping the awkward shape wasn’t a possibility. Next morning when I played with it, it came right off. Fail!!

Next I tried Gorilla glue – the kind that expands 3X. That worked amazingly! Phew! problem solved!

Fast forward about a year later – the chairs were still sitting in the garage gathering sawdust except sometime in between, I had sanded them and sprayed them with primer using my super awesome paint sprayer

I had to finally tackle something I had been procrastinating on -the seat of rocking chair B. Here is what it looked like.

rocking chair B seat

Not too great right… sanding didn’t help either – it just made it worse. After a lot of thought (aka 2 months), I decided to coat it with wood putty all over and then sand it down to smooth it. It worked! The seat isn’t completely smooth and there are some striations but I like it – it adds character. And yes, thats a sneak peek of rocking chair A on the top corner 🙂

Finally, it was time to  finish this long story and I got the colors picked – Valspar’s Lilac Blossom and Clark+Kensington’s Seaside Manor.

I made chalk paint using  I Heart Naptime’s recipe. I have used it before and love the results. Here is rocking chair B after being painted. Not too bad after all that we went through right?

rocking chair B painted

In my excitement I forgot to take a picture of Rocking chair A after it was painted. After being painter, the chairs looked too plain. I decided to add some pattern to the chairs. I asked my kids about what I should paint on them. The answer was a unanimous – Frozen!! Ok! so lets think… their favorite songs those days were “Let it go” and “In Summer”. I wanted a neutral subtle theme so I decided to be inspired by Olaf’s song – Bees will buzz, Kids will blow dandelion fuzz….

And…. drumroll….. here are the beauties –

Rocking chairs after

I hand painted the designs on the seats before applying wax… the kids love them! Here are close up shots of the chair seats –

dandelions close up bees close up

Thus ends the long story of the two rocking chairs that went from drab to fab….

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Frozen inspired kids rocking chair makeover

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Anika's goal is to inspire and empower beginners with woodworking, DIY, home improvement, and home decor ideas.
She wants everyone to unlock their creative potential and experience the feeling that comes with making something. Nothing feels better better than seeing something and saying "I can make that!"

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  1. I picked up a rocking chair at the dump that I need to finish. this gives me some ideas. Thank you.

    1. Awesome Lee!! Please do share how it turns out!

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