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1940s plywood chairs


The contract on the house fell over due to a very rusty, rotten roof. We had suspicions when we noticed that they had spray painted an old corrugated iron roof. What were they hiding? A rotten, leaking roof. Thankfully our builder inspected on a rainy day! On we go with search. To take my mind off things I have been working on some 1940s plywood chairs. Won them on eBay for pittance because they were in such a bad state. I was looking for something with a slight industrial look and these were perfect. After gluing, sanding and applying danish oil (they were SOOOOOOO dry they soaked up the oil before I could rub it in) it was time to recover the seat pads. I still have some vintage bus roll fabric left and convinced myself to use half a metre. I think they look great. What I really love is that you can read their hard life in their finish. Tough old chairs that have survived so much. I know exactly where these will go in my new home ... when I get a new home. For now they will live in the storage shed.


Here's what they looked like on eBay. I won two and then ended up buying 2 more from the seller. Hi Pete! The others are finished but I'm waiting to decide what fabric to use on their seats. I'm so strict with what I use my remaining bus roll fabric on as my stocks are getting low. I've also included a couple of shots of the work in progress. Time for the next project I think!



Reader Comments (11)

Holy sh*t they look incredible! You have so much more patience than I do for projects like that.

9 May 2010 | Registered CommenterKiM

Great job, I really like them!

10 May 2010 | Unregistered CommenterWY Gal

Thanks WYGal. Kim I find it like meditation. Wax on wax off :) Plus I know how much I'd have to pay in a shop for something like this and that motivates me!

.... that was me Jo. I forgot to sign in as me.

10 May 2010 | Registered CommenterDesire to Inspire

can't believe they are the same chairs :)
love them!

11 May 2010 | Unregistered Commenterjoanne

Hey Jo, they are amazing! The fabric choice was not surprisingly..... inspired. Proves what I always say, the trick to good ebaying is having the imagination to be able to see through the 'wear and tear' to the glorious finished product! Wanted to let you know of a fab event next week at the WAC would be great if you could get along...check out blog for info, cheers Katherine

I simply love these chairs! I wish I had them.

23 May 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTonia

Hi, I am from Las Vegas and I stumbled on your blog. I absolutely love your imagination and style!

30 May 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMitzi

Hi, These chairs are fabulous! I was wondering if you can tell me where you found the vintage bus roll fabric? I am in need of pillows for my couch and this is exactly the fabric I'm looking for, though I'm sure quite hard to track down. Appreciate any info you can provide.

22 Oct 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCourtney

Courtney I found several bus rolls at a flea market about 8 years ago and this is the last of it. I got each roll for about $10 and looking back now that was a steal but then nobody wanted it then. I have only ever seen it on eBay since and it goes for high hundreds if not more per roll and most listed these days are paper or vinyl anyway. Sorry I couldn't be of more help.

22 Oct 2010 | Registered Commentermidcenturyjo

Amazing marquetry too. Have you checked to see if it's signed? Oh, and goodness, take it out of the shed....right this very minute, it's far more valuable than you think if it's there!

26 Oct 2010 | Unregistered CommenterPax

It's not signed Pax. Found it in my local thrift store for ten dollars and love it. So much work and such patience. Don't worry it is safely inside at the moment about a metre from where I'm sitting. I'm hoping to use it in my husband's office when we move.

26 Oct 2010 | Registered Commentermidcenturyjo

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