Rescuing a Lady’s Parlor Chair

Since becoming an aspiring minimalist, I have been much more selective in my lifelong curbside-treasure hunting. Much to my hubby’s relief, my collecting habit has been broken for the most part due to my desire for a less cluttered home…

But my rescuing heart is not so cold as to leave a gem like this lady’s parlor chair to an undignified fate in a dump! Yes, she was certainly in rough shape, but I knew there was royalty within. In fact, she belongs to the family of Louis XV and Louis XVI chairs, from around 1760, at least as far as I can tell from looking at her. She is a fauteuil (pronounced “foe-tay”), or a style of chair characterized by a carved wooden frame (as opposed to a chair whose frame is covered fully by upholstery) with open-sided arms, wider in the front for the billowy dresses of the day.

Although her seat had caved in due to dry-rotted webbing, her frame maintained its integrity, and I was taken back by the beauty of her carvings. The floral, curvy designs are indicative of the Louis XV period while the column-style architectural legs are Neoclassical, a development in the Louis XVI period, so I concluded she is a product of the transition between the timeperiods. Please do comment if you have more accurate info than I do, but this was as well as I could do in my few hours of researching.

If you’d like to see the full journey from discovery (I was on a date with my hubby when we drove by) to reinvention, watch here. This was by far my most exciting trash to treasure adventure. I totally geeked out about the history, even discovering horse hair in the padding!

While I would LOVE to restore her properly to her true historical finery one day, I opted for a cheeky reinvention in order to use her in my 6 year old daughter’s upcoming room makeover. My girl loves soft things and pink, so that is how I came up with the faux fur design idea. I actually used a faux fur rug, which I snagged for only $15,* as opposed to the $30+ price I was seeing elsewhere. It would have cost even more to buy faux fur fabric by the yard, most unfortunately. I did have to do some piecing and hot gluing as it was only 2×6′, but I am so thrilled with the outcome. Kody likes it too.


* Some links above which are provided for your convenience may be affiliate links, meaning if you make a purchase through them a small commission goes toward my creative content. Thanks for your support!

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