Google+ House Revivals: How to Weave a Pretty Seat

Friday, March 25, 2016

How to Weave a Pretty Seat

I popped into a Goodwill the other day and found the cutest little bench -- that is, it could have been cute. If it had a seat.

My husband has a running joke about my love affair with "broken chairs". We've moved broken chairs half-way across the country and back again.
Of course, this little bench was exactly "broken", strictly speaking. In fact, it was rock solid. It just needed some cheery yellow paint, and a seat. Luck would have it that I still had some raffia left over from this rush seat weaving project.

I started by cleaning the bench well, then lightly sanded it. Then I wiped it off and painted it with some leftover paint. I gave it a couple of coats, with a couple of different colors. Next, I sanded it again, then lightly wiped some stain over the bench and quickly wiped most of it off to create an "aged" look.

To begin the weaving, I nailed the end of a piece of raffia to the inside of the seat frame. You can also use a staple gun to do this.

Because I didn't have very much raffia, I decided to do an open weave, in hopes that my coil would get me through the entire project. Of course, I didn't actually do any math to be sure I had enough raffia (this is where I hear my husband saying "hope is not a methodology").  The chair was woven using two wraps across the width or length of the chair, followed by two wraps around the frame/rung.

To make this work, on one side of the chair, you actually need to wrap across the frame first, then "backtrack" and wrap the rung. Anytime I needed to add another length of cord, I planned it so it would be on the underside of the chair, and tied the two ends together with a square knot.

Did I mention that I had no idea what I was doing, and that I didn't have a full coil of raffia?

I ran out of material when I was about eighty percent of the way through the project. I was not about to order another coil of raffia, so I improvised.

Digging into my stash, I found some fabric that I tore into strips about two inches wide. These strips were then twisted into cord that was roughly the same size as the raffia cord.

I don't think the finished result looks like a failure to plan, at all! I think it looks like I planned it that way all along. Even my husband likes it. What do you think?

This has turned out to be the perfect little entry bench. You can drop your stuff, and kick you shoes underneath!

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