Something pinched me.
She said this looking at the stool. When she looked back at me with a forlorn expression, I knew it wasn't good.
The seat broke.
Oh no. I was afraid of that. Apparently in our house, sitting is a contact sport.
After fifteen plus years, a strand of the rush had just worn away and snapped in two, leaving behind a hole.
Now, I can sew and paint and drill and nail, but the one thing I know ~ without a doubt ~ that I cannot do, is repair rush seating. I have seen it done and it is way beyond me.
It's not necessarily because of the weaving itself, I get the process, but it has to be done in a precise manner that will stand the test of time. It's a skill and an art form.
Definitely not a super easy DIY, so this Exquisitely Unremarkable girl was out.
No big deal. I called the repair shop.
The nice man on the phone gave me an estimate of $200.
Yeah. I was back in.
When I couldn't find anything applicable on Google, I started examining the seat myself.
I figured I could do something to patch it, even if it was only a short term kind of fix.
So I dug in.
First, I checked out the construction. I knew that pulling the broken strand out could potentially cause a major unraveling event. I flipped the chair over to peek, and luckily, the broken piece's counterpart underneath the seat was very long and it was firmly anchored. If I cut it, nothing else would be affected.
I could remove the broken piece from the bottom and since it was long enough, use it as a patch.
Here's the thing.
I am no professional and 99% of the DIYs I attempt are trial and error, but my philosophy is, if it's not an heirloom, looks like it could be a quick job and I am going to have to pay someone else big bucks to fix it, why not try it on my own.
What's the worst that could happen? I may be paying a slightly larger repair bill?
I could deal with that.
So I decided to give it a shot.
I pulled that piece through and cut it away from the chair.
Then I grabbed the broken piece from the top of the seat and trimmed it.
Next, I threaded one end of the patch piece through the center to the bottom of the chair and laid the rest of it down in the hole created by the break.
It fit together like a puzzle. I anchored it with A LOT of hot glue.
Then I gently wrapped those soft strands that I had freed up earlier around the end of the new piece, so it looked like it fit in the space and glued the heck out of that, too.
Of course, I burned myself in the process, because I was using my fingers to smooth the glue down.
That's just about the time that my husband came into the room and suggested I use the back of a razor blade to do that and the front of the razor blade to trim away any excess fibers.
He is smart.
So that's what I did.
Finally, I turned the chair upside down and glued the piece in place from there, too.
Is it perfect?
Would you notice the repair if you came over and didn't know about it?
Will it last?
We use these chairs every day, but it's pretty solid right now.
Of course, if you have any helpful tips for me or have actually re-rushed (is that a word?) or repaired a chair, I would love to hear about it.
I know that this is the beginning of the end for these Pottery Barn stools and while I absolutely adore them, I do not want to invest four hundred bucks for a fix.
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Oh and like I said, the sitting gets rough around here, so here are some other recent chair repairs.