I’ve got from a Freecycler these 3 chairs with all 3 cane seats broken. Everybody knows how difficult and expensive can be to change or fix cane on a traditional cane seat chair. With all those little holes around the edge of the chairs, if you really don’t know what you are doing, is better to call for a professional, but if you don’t have that kind of money to pay for it, you better put your brains to work and find an alternative solution to create a beautiful seat.
I loved the colour of the wood and the vintage look with the original patina and I definitely didn’t wanted to change that, so I had to come with a solution to hide the holes without hiding the whole wood of the seat.
After a few days work to remove all the broken cane from the 3 chairs, I’ve got some webbing and started to fix to the seat to close the hole and make a base to receive the filling and fabric on top.
At this point you really have to fix the webbing very well to the chair and make sure its has a good tension, use a webbing stretcher if you have one, if the webbing is loose the seat won’t have a good result at the end. I’ve used 6 staples on each side of each webbing strip.
One the the chairs also had being fixed before with screws on the inside edge, because I believe the too many holes made the wood a bit weak and at some point in the past it broke and previous owner had to fix with screws to hold the wood together. So I decided to used wood filler to fill in all the holes on this chair to make it stronger.
After I’ve finished the webbing, then I started filling. I didn’t used foam, first because I didn’t have any and I wanted to use what I had at the home, so I had some polyester wadding and loose polyester filling. I’ve used 4 layers of wadding with the loose filling between them. I’ve stapled them around the edge on top of the webbing.
To finish off, I’ve used a fabric in a blue greyish colour with white embroidery, I’ve already had it, didn’t have to buy it. I’ve folded the edge and fixed with staples first, then finished with decorative upholstery nails. These nails come in strips and you have to use only one nail at every 5 to fix the strip to the chair. So this is not for the purpose of holding the fabric, but merely decorative, so make sure you staple the fabric very well, because that is what will hold the fabric.
I know a lot of people throw away chairs with broken cane seat, just because the only solution is to put another cane seating which will cost a fortune and it’s not worth it. But here is a very good alternative and much cheaper. You just need a bit of patience and some basic skills in upholstery. Hope you enjoy and will be able to save some very good chairs from the tip.
These chairs are now available to purchase from my online store.