Repairing and repurposing Duncan Phyfe chairs!

No one likes stained and natural wood as much as I...and painting some pieces just goes against every grain in my body (get it..."grain" wood!) But sometimes, as I have said before, it is the only way to fix or enhance a piece. 

A few years ago someone in my family, who shall remain nameless (MOM!), broke the back on one of my Duncan Phyfe dining room chairs!!!  I stuck it in my bedroom along with another chair and a little table.  I only brought it in for big dinners and I made sure I was the only one who sat in it because I knew I couldn't lean back! 


Mahogany....beautiful wood and beautiful set!  Busted....literally in half....sniff.

I have seen many of these Duncan Phyfe chairs painted, but as much as I have tired of this dining set, I knew I could never bring myself to paint it.

But because of the repairs I had to do on this chair, I knew I didn't have a choice.  And I couldn't paint just ONE...I had to have a matching pair.    

First I had to glue and clamp the busted pieces.  After that dried, I had to get REAL artistic with the wood filler.  There were several chunks missing so I had to fill and shape...and then do some "sculpting" with sand paper!

Then it was time for a little kilz, a lot of sanding, tack cloth, paint and a clear coat. Maaaaan, that is a tough thing to do with such a pretty set! 

But honestly, I kind of like the way it turned out!   Not perfect but A LOT better than it was and now it is actually a functional chair!


I recovered the seats a year or so ago and I really like this fabric and have no desire to change it. So I debated whether to go with a "mocha brownish" kinda paint color or this soft off white.  I went with the off white.  I just decided if I was going to make a change, it was go bold baby!   White is bold in my world!

I put both chairs in my room next to the Duncan Phyfe drum table.  This is my little "computer and coffee" table.

Little story about this table...I actually have two....the other is in my living room (notice the way in the world to save the tops of your furniture!).  Twenty plus years ago, when I was a real estate agent, we were touring a new listing and the owner was selling all the furniture. I asked how much she wanted for the two drum tables....TWENTY FIVE DOLLARS EACH.  Are you kidding me...I couldn't whip out my wallet fast enough!!


Even thought I refinished this table a few years ago, it looks a tad "grungy" next to the freshly painted chairs.  Again, I know paint is all the rage, but I just can't bring myself to paint this table. 

But I am thinking seriously about painting the other 4 chairs that match theses.  I have two more like this and two caption chairs...hmmmm.  And of course the matching Duncan Phyfe dining table.   

As I mentioned, my taste has changed over the years....from "traditional" to more "mid century."  So I hope someday to have a more "mid century" style dining table. Who knows...some day when I have nothing to do I might just drag them all into the yard and give them a makeover....someday....when I have nothing to do....hahahahahaha! 

Because honestly, I'm kind of loving this set again.....see what a little paint can do!