decorating,  DIY,  Makeover

Cat-tastic Chair Makeover

If there’s ever any doubt that I love my kids, let’s all remember this blog post, shall we?

On a recent trip to the Habitat Restore where I found THE couch, my daughter found a chair for her desk.

It’s actually less of a desk and more of a vanity table (from IKEA), but let’s not mince words.

She draws her cat pictures there, so I’m calling it a desk. Plus, we’re a little too early for the vanity stage of growing up.

Draw cat pictures as long as you want, kid.

Now, back to the chair. My daughter tested out a lot of potential chairs and finally after I said just pick one before I grow old and die settled on a bamboo dining chair that was the right scale for her desk. Most important, it was wobble-free.

It cost ten bucks.

The reason why the chair selection took three lifetimes so long was that my kids doubt my expertise at the oddest times.

I can wing it with loose explanations of scientific theories and they totally believe me. When I explain that it doesn’t matter what the cloth seat on a chair looks like because I can change it, THAT is when I get the raised eyebrow.

Child of mine, this is my wheelhouse. I was born to staple fabric!

Anything to avoid actual sewing.

Making over a chair is a great starter project for an 11-year-old, by the way.

They can handle cleaning the chair, unscrewing the seat, even spray painting.

Fully expect them to fade away during the bajillion coats of spray paint that it takes to cover all the nooks and crannies of a chair though.

You’re doing a great job, Mom! Can I play Minecraft now?

Since I can’t handle a chair with paint drips and I do like your use of flattery, yes you can.

My daughter picked the spray paint color for her chair. She likes purple and immediately gravitated to a light lavender color (this one by Rustoleum).

My logical expectation was that we would find a fabric to coordinate with the lavender.

Logic never met an 11-year-old animal lover.

My daughter expressed interest in making over the chair seat with a soft plush fabric, which I thought would be easy to find. Maybe a fleece material or something sweater-like.

Well, those options all went out the window in a flash when my daughter saw…it’s hard for me to say…when my daughter saw the CAT FABRIC.

Who knew they made cat fabric!?

Of course they make cat fabric.

You know I tried my best to nonchalantly position my body to block the bolt of cat fabric from my daughter’s field of vision. Nothing suspicious about that.

But even without her glasses on, she spotted the SECOND BOLT OF CAT FABRIC.

Yes, the store had two bolts of the same cat fabric.


This is reason #5,380 why I should never, ever shop at Walmart.

So I bought an entire yard.

Also known as reason #5,381.


We have not procured a heavy-duty stapler or staple gun since moving back from Ireland.

As luck would have it (finally!), my regular stapler did the trick on securing the fabric to the underside of the chair.

As luck would NOT have it (of course!), I had to do the reupholstery part of the project twice. *insert forehead slap here*

The first time I didn’t double-check the direction of the seat and the cats ended up mocking me by facing the wrong way.

As turns out, fabric cats and real cats have a lot in common.

While I’m not a fan of cat fabric, I want to be clear, I don’t dislike cats. I consider myself neutral on the topic.

I’m not neutral on the subject of my daughter though.

This cat-tastic chair perfectly suits her personality. Not flashy, but perfectly unique.

While I have gently suggested how awesome the chair would look painted black or forest green to better match the fabric, she doesn’t feel the same need that I do for things to match. She knows what she likes and is confident in her choices. I admire that!

I’m going with the flow on this one because I love that kid to pieces. Choosing which battles to fight is very important when you’re a parent. I’m just happy she didn’t ask for cat wallpaper. Or a real cat.

P.S. If after reading this post you cannot live without cat fabric in your life, I understand. I got your back! I found this one, this wild one and this really wild one.

P.P.S. I still have to paint the trim in her room. Anyone want to help?

P.P.S.S. No, I’m not showing you a picture of her desk. Have you seen what a tween girl collects? I rest my case. 

If you like cats and kids, I have a few other posts you might enjoy.

Colorful Wall in a Girl’s Room

Diary of a Not-So-Wimpy Girl Free Printable

Sheet Metal Map Art for a Boy’s Room

Huh. I guess I don’t have any posts about cats. Except this one.


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  • Sandy Smith

    Kuddos to you for letting her choose her colors and the cat material. I am like you, I would have chosen something else. However, it is important to let them explore and express themselves at this age. It will give her confidence as she gets older.

    I liked the Bamboo color. It would have looked nice with any plain color. However it is Annika’s room, not mine. Next year she might want something entirely different.

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