Sunday, May 17, 2009

Save that old leather piece

About nine months ago, I realized our old leather chair
was on the way to the curb unless a major miracle could save it. I
sure hated to give that chair up. But like me, it was really
showing its age; all those years of kids tumbling over the
back and sitting three to the seat reading or watching TV together.
With nothing to lose, I borrowed my hubby's sander
( I could have used plain fine grit sand paper) and basically
performed a mini-dermabrasion on the chair. It was neat
watching years of stain, dirt, body oil and light scratches
mostly disappear. Once it was clean and porous, I decided to change
the color as well.

I vacuumed all of the crud away and then I rubbed the leather
with rich brown water-based gel stain applied with
clean cheese cloth. The leather soaked the stain up in big gulps.
This stain is the kind of stuff you find in a can at your local
hardware which stains and seals in one step, advertised for

The tones varied according to how lightly or hard I rubbed it. That
was great because the effect was an antique bomber-jacket patina --
a very expensive look. Some of the deeper scratches picked up deep
color which was attractive too -- instant distressing! I let that
dry overnight.

The next morning I rubbed in an over-coat of walnut Bison wax
and hit it with my hubby's car buffer. It looked wonderful! I
was amazed, kids were amazed, hubby was really amazed and
didn't even complain because I used his priceless tools.
The finish now felt supple and smooth plus that bison wax
smells nice too.

I would have shared this immediately but I wanted to make sure it
didn't rub off to discolor skin or stain clothing ----
BUT!!!---- months have passed, and there haven't
been any problems at all with it. This project was a great
investment of time (not much) and money (not much).

In this economy, we all should spread the word of anything that
helps us to make-do when we can. If you want to try this and still
feel nervous about it, test it on an old leather purse first.
Personally, I'm a real happy camper with this trick ---and now,
who knows? Barring some horrific rip, I can refresh the finish
every few years and may read to my great-grand children in it

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Let's Play Decorator... with an unlimited budget.

Creating the above layout was such fun - like going shopping without spending a dime. makes it possible to go shopping all over the web, import your own photos or photos you find online by doing a search right there and then , after which you can move it all around until you have something you love. I had painted the portrait of my grandmother and I wanted to see what would look good with it if I could have anything I found and liked online. With exception of the gilt framed portrait, everything in the layout, including the sunglasses, is available online.

Once I "published" my choices, the items on my shopping list popped up with the prices. I tallied it all up and the cost would be - 3700.00 dollars. Yikes! I bet I could beat that price to pieces by using trash to treasure substitutes. But still it was a fun project even though the painting is not mine. You have to be sure to click on the photo to see how neat this feature is -Terrific! It was a fun way to play decorator.

I'm thinking it would be awesome for project previews. For instance, my hubby is considering some new landscaping. It would be a big surprise if I were to take a photo of our home and yard, go shopping for plants, shrubs, trees, and flowers, cyber-plant 'em online so we can preview what might work for us with a cost-estimate for us to budget shop and beat. Wow! I'm loving it!

Next I'm making a Hint! card for my birthday this month. I know it would be appreciated because I must be very hard to buy for, since I can't even think of anything I want. I'll probably post it on the frig so my family can't miss it. Can't wait!

To run on over and give it a try - CLICK HERE.

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