For a long time, I’ve been a huge fan of Mid Century Modern furniture and art. So when I found this chair at a local estate sale, I just had to buy it. It doesn’t look like much, but I could envision its potential! My dad, whom I lost a few years ago, loved to renovate furniture and inspired me to find some diamonds in the rough. He was amazing at furniture renovation because honestly he had a lot more patience than I.

Mid Century Modern Chair Renovation

Mid Century Modern Chair Renovation

Step 1

I started by sanding the polyurethane off. It would have gone a lot faster with an electric sander but I used a sponge sander and got a good workout in at the same time.

Mid Century Modern Chair Renovation


Step 2

Then came the oil-based primer. I thought one can would do it but it turns out I didn’t buy enough (duh!). So I didn’t have enough left for the bottom. It was okay though—once the cushions are on the chair, no one will notice. =) I didn’t spray it very evenly either…oops.



Step 3

Then came the paint. I decide to go with a nice glossy black. I didn’t want any brush or roller marks to show so I used a little Floetrol to help mask any streaks.



Step 4

I used a roller for the large areas and a brush to cut in on the corners.



Looking good…


I’m done!!! It took about five hours, letting the coats dry in between.


Step 5

Once it was finished I brought the chair to a local upholster who created new cushions from foam and bonded leather—super soft and comfy.


Drumroll…. here is the finished product complete with classic Mid Century Modern Eames fabric pillow. What do you think?

mid century modern chair renovation • pomp creative • design studio • washington, dc • annapolis, maryland