Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Ruffle Back Chair Tutoral

You can make a chair like this too.
Isn't this a cute chair. I can show you how to make it with no sewing.

This is the chair that I started with.
I know what all of you are thinking. Another Chair!!!! well I saw this one at a thrift shop and about died when the guy told me it was $5.00. I have been wanting to do a chair like this so I grabbed it.

I sanded the chair because it had quite a few scratches and nicks on the wood. The old finish of sealer looked like it was kind of flaky.

After sanding it well,  I painted it with primer and then rolled it with a white paint.
I did sand just a little to distress the legs and the fluted design just a little. It won't show much because the previous finish was very light in color. Notice above that I painted the old piping so that if any shows it will just blend in.

I started with a drop cloth and I washed it and dried it.
I cut the front of the upright part of the chair first, it being my largest piece. 

I stapled it on and trimmed the edges. 

I like to staple and trim leaving a little extra to fold up and glue, it looks finished and covers the staples. I can then put any trim over the stapled area with out worrying that any staples will show.

The folds don't really matter either, I will show you later that they won't show.

Next I cut a piece for the seat and stapled it on. I tucked the back in as far down into the chair as I could.  With out my pneumatic stapler I could not attach it there at this time.

I finished the seat with several staples to put it into place and then secured it down along the piping that I painted. If any of the piping shows it will just blend in. I trimmed it so that I could fold it up and glue it.

I measured here for a 4 inch ruffle to fit under the bottom edge of the chair. I decided to do it this way because I really like the fluted design in the bottom apron of the chair. 

I used a drop cloth and used the salvaged edges so that I did not have to hem the ruffle on the bottom.

Notice the left hand edge is the salvaged edge not the hemmed edge. Under the bottom edge of the chair I just folded and stapled over and over to form my ruffle edge.

Here is another picture showing the back, seat and the ruffle. Didn't take long at all and working outside on the deck was a lot of fun. 

I cut a piece for the back and on the left side I took advantage of my seamed edge. 
I cut off the hemmed edges of the drop cloth and decided to use it for my trim. This hemmed edge will be used to trim out the rest of the chair as well, I figured it would be a little different and have it's own personality.

Next I stapled across the top and  then down the right side.

Here is where after I attached the back I glue the edge back over the staples here you can see it half done. This cuts down a lot on threads hanging out when you put your trim on. Frayed edges are really common when working with drop cloths, you have to learn how to glue it down and hide it under.

This is what I don't want to see under each ruffle. I have wanted to do this type of back for a long time. I have never seen one done like this, but these things exist in my mind for a long time before I actually get to do them. This fabric on the top is not attached I am just trying to figure out how many ruffles to do and the spacing of the ruffles.

I figured out that the back is 22 inches and I want to tuck at least an inch under each ruffle, so I did 5 - 6 inch ruffles for the back.  I don't have a sewing machine here at the beach house so I had to figure out how to do this without a sewing machine. Here is my first ruffle. I started at the bottom of the back and glued the top of the first 3 inches then made a fold and glued that down. I repeated this over and over again.

Here are two ruffles done. Keep going until the back is covered overlapping as you go.

Then I took the hemmed edging and went all around the chair and finished it off. I think it turned out great. I am thinking of doing some type of stencil pattern on the front of the chair. I have not decided yet and some carefully placed bows.

This is the hemmed trim.

Trim on top of back.

Trim on bottom of back side.

Trim around the front of the seat. This was fun to do not really very hard, no sewing. I just stapled and glued the whole project.

I love how it came out I will update it as soon as I do the stencil and bows. 

Here are some before and after pictures so you can really see the difference.

I think I am going to take this home from the beach house and use it in the living room. I need to enjoy it for a while. I like how it turned out and I might want to try my hand at the stencil idea.

I have linked up to the following party's.
Savvy Southern Style

My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia

Kirsty Girl

The Trendy Treehouse


Miss Mustard Seed's Creative Blog
DIY Club


  1. That is so cute. I will definitely have to try this one!

  2. Cindy, that is fabulous and original. You did an amazing job.

  3. I so love it...fantastic job and no sewing that's what drew me in:) Really a wonderful idea.


  4. Forgot to say that I'm now a follower:)


  5. SHUT UP!!
    That is so cute!
    If you lived close to me I would so be on you to make me some too!!!

    Just became your latest follower!

  6. Hi Cindy!!

    Thanks for visiting my blog! I am so glad you did because I can't believe this chair ...I love it!
    This is what I want to do to my dining room chairs that you saw in my post!!
    I'm a new follower!

    Pamela :)

  7. What a fantastic idea and adorable finished product! I'll have to add that to my list of wanna dos!

  8. I'm swooning! This is fabulous!! Love love love!
    PS THanks for linking

  9. That is the most adorable chair ever! You had me at the "no sewing." Love all those ruffles! Just found your lovely blog via Kim's party. I'm your newest follower and would be delighted for you to follow me back!

  10. LOVE THIS! Come on ova' and link up to my Linky Party! xoxokara


    That is BEAUTIFUL!! Come share!

  11. How fun is that ?! Love it ... super tutorial, too. Thanks for sharing, *Becca* (your newest follower)

  12. that is awesome, it's the most beautiful chair! i love it. i'm having a party today, i would love it if you shared this.

  13. Wow that is gorgeous. You give me ideas!! Love it.


  14. Adorable! You are so creative. I appreciate the's really inspirational!

  15. This is such an amazing tutorial! Thanks so much for sharing and for linking up with my linky! I so have to keep this one in mind! And no sewing! What could be better!
    The outcome is superb really! You did a marvelous job!

  16. Its so perfect


  17. This has to be one of the coolest chairs ever. You did an amazing job. I am your latest follower. I would love for you to come and check out my blog and follow me back at Thanks so much.

  18. Gorgeous chair! What a difference you made--simply beautiful.

  19. Such a cute make over!!! Bien.

  20. This is fabulous! And unique and doable...and stencil would be a great final touch!
    Thanks so much for sharing.

  21. This is cutest idea I have seen in a very long time. So darn cute I can hardly stand it.

  22. So glad you stopped by and linked up this awesome post to my Swing into Spring party. Thanks so much. Hope to see you again next week.

  23. That is BEYOND darling and you made it seem so simple! It is truly one of the most original chair recoverings I have ever seen. I love how something like a drop cloth can look so elegant done in this way. Thank you so much for linking this up to Inspiration Friday this week!

  24. So creative! Love this post...thank you for linking up to Whassup Wednesday! Hope to see you tomorrow:)


  25. i featured you at my party today, it'll be up in a while and you can check it out. hope you party with me again this week!

  26. You had me at no sew. This is just so fabulous. Great job.

  27. I featured your gorgeous chair at my Swing into Spring party today. Please stop by and pick up your "I've Been Featured" button. Thanks so much.

  28. Cindy-I love your chair! You did such a nice job, great tute!
    I'm featuring this post @ CCC this week.

  29. that turned out so cute! what a great concept!

  30. I have been wanting a ruffle back chair and have not quite got around to that I see yours and how pretty it is, I might get moving a little pretty! I am a new follower.
    504 Main

  31. I love the back of that chair!! and no sew, that is brilliant. So pretty! You rocked it!

  32. Very well done! Great tutorial too - I linked this to my ruffles post today, it's good!

  33. A very nice project...the chair looks awesome!

  34. This is such a great project! Your chair looks fabulous!

    Your new follower

  35. I am over the moon for this, just getting ready to re-do the master bath and I WANT this chair!

  36. Hi! I just saw this via facebook. This is the cutest project I've seen!! My kind of project as I'm not a sewer!! You have NEW FOLLOWER! Thank you for sharing your Ideas!!


  37. Hello! I just wanted you to know that I thought this was gorgeous!! And, I think you are very talented so I awarded you the "Liebster" award on my blog. You can check it out here: Thanks again for the great tutorial and I love your blog! ~Julie

  38. I just found you through Pinterest. This chair is AMAZING, even more amazing because it is NO SEW!!!! I have shared a link to your blog on my Facebook page at:!/pages/The-Pink-Porch-Antiques-Vintage-Finds-Cottage-Decor/219189644766542 I can't wait to make a ruffled back chair of my own. Well done!!!!

  39. This is lovely! I featured you today on Craft Gossip :)

  40. What kind of 'glue' did you use? Love this! I'm getting ready to recover 4 parsons and this gives me a great idea for the back!


I love to hear from my followers. Questions, or comments are always welcome.