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Before and After: Cowhide Reupholstered Chair

Here’s a before and after that I’d like to soon forget! It’s one of those projects that I foolishly challenged myself with… I thought recovering an old vinyl chair would be a simple project for my skill set. Even when my brother-in-law insisted that I cover it with cowhide instead of fabric, I thought it would be no problem. … {proving I know so very little about upholstering furniture} …

I had no idea how physically tough it would be to work with a rounded chair and stiff cowhide. The first attempt at covering portions of the chair left me bloody hands and in tears, no joke. Unfortunately I had already invested in the expensive hide so there was no turning back. I would work a little on the chair and then set it aside for several weeks, so all in all it took me a good 6 months to get through this project. I’m not proud of that, but was so grateful to have it finally completed.
Here’s how the chair looked when we found it. It’s just an old vinyl covered chair with wood legs, really nothing special to look at. {that’s what I love about transforming chairs}
Here are some close-up pics of the project in stages…


The final project is a modern twist on the 60’s styled chair with a little western inspiration. I joked that the view from behind the chair reminded me of a woman’s saddle bags. Side and front views are not as humorous and seem to fit! Most importantly, my brother-in-law was pleased with it! Let me know what you think.


RESTYLE TIP: Don’t use stiff cowhide to cover a round chair. Seriously. But hey, the customer was happy. 

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