Living Room

Floor Model, Half Off

Score! I found the chair that I wanted, marked down to 50% off! Why, you may wonder? What’s wrong with it?

Oh, nothing. Just a 2″ tear smack in the middle of the fabric where your head rests. See it? It’s up near the top on a blue part of the fabric.

(click to enlarge)

Do you think it can be fixed? Right now, I can still return it. Then I can either go for the full price (non-torn) chair, or skip it and keep the orange chair instead of selling it.

The busy pattern is in the chair’s favor here, as a repair job would be much less noticeable than on a solid color. And in a way, the tear takes some of the preciousness away from the chair; It’s coming into a house with a toddler and a baby, a dog, and several cats. Something, at some point, is bound to happen to it. (Although the orange chair has survived the last five years completely intact.)

It looks like my options for repair are to patch it, or to darn the upholstery with a looped stitch. The chair came with matching armrest covers that I could use for a patch. I could probably take it somewhere to be repaired too, but if I’m going to put more money toward the chair, I may as well buy a new one.

Think it could be saved?

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  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 2:19 pm

    $800! yikes. It would probably be an easy fix. However, I’d return it since I personally would not want to spend that much, even discounted, on something not perfect. I would keep the old chair and chose a fabric you like for to reupholster it with.

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 2:39 pm

    I totally think it can be saved, it’s a beautiful chair! good luck!

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 2:42 pm

    As cute as that chair is, I do think that it’s a crazy price, even at 50% off. I have recently learnt to do traditional upholstery and I know that the overall quality of your latest acquisition will be poor compared with the work of an upholsterer. My worry with repairing the tear is that it will just rip again in time. Choose a gorgeous fabric and make-over your orange chair!

    • Reply
      August 3, 2011 at 6:14 pm

      Agree, 100%. Maybe you could find a print very similar (I’m sure there’s got to be something out there that you love just as much or more!) and take your orange chair to get professionally upholstered?
      I just think $800 is a tad much for a damaged chair.

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 2:43 pm

    Personally I love your orange chair better which is saying a lot because I abhor the color orange! The shape is gorgeous and if you are truly tired of the print I’d have a slipcover made in a fabulous floral like the ripped chair.

    I don’t know if I’m just at that time of my life where I’m tired of fixing stuff, kids grown up and rather have what I want but I wouldn’t keep that chair. IMHO it should have been marked down less than half, but even it was, I still wouldn’t keep it!

    And in case I haven’t been clear on what I really think, I’d return that chair and keep the adorable orange chair! LOL

    PS I assume someone cut the chair while unwrapping it? Otherwise, ODD that it would rip in that spot. It may be a print but probably wouldn’t stand up to two little ones if that’s the case.

    shhhhhh take it back! ;)

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 2:44 pm

    I love the orange chair and vote to keep it. (or maybe sell it to me!)

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 2:48 pm

    I like the orange chair better.

  • Reply
    Andrea K
    August 3, 2011 at 2:51 pm

    JEALOUS! It’s super cute, and the tear is super tiny. You could just put a throw blanket over it to hide the tear, lolololololol.

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 2:51 pm

    Any chair at $800.00 should be unused and perfect.

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 3:12 pm

    I agree that any chair at 800 should be in perfect condition. I vote to keep the orange chair mostly because I love it!

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 3:32 pm

    Orange chair gets my vote without a doubt. Reupholster it if you are in need of a change.

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 3:38 pm

    Keep the orange chair.

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 3:44 pm

    I think that if *you* love your new chair and it makes you happy…then you should keep it! As for the tear…tear smear! With 2 young children in the house…there will be lots of wear & tear on any furniture in the house and it you’ve paid 50% off for a chair with a tiny tear…that it a great bargain compaired to the little finger prints and who knows what else it will see over the next few years. Personally, I would take thread in a matching blue and fix it with the tiniest of stitches and be done with it. I actually like bringing home things that are NOT perfect because when the kids or dogs do something to it then it doesn’t seem so bad. I brought home a new to us coffee table that had a few scratches on it and was marked down because of the scratches. Not long after, my 6 yr. old son {very uncharacteristically} carved his name in it while he was in stupor with a fever. If it had been a new & perfect coffee table…I would have been so upset. But because it already had some scratches, I dealt with it. It’ still in our living room and when he leaves home for university, we will give him the coffee table. Lol! Have a wonderful week Nicole! Angie xo

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 3:47 pm

    In the spirit of reuse recycle I would tuck a little square of fusible interlining in the hole and press. You would hardly see it at all, and it’s not a high traffic bit like the seat would be.

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 4:18 pm

    If that chair, at 50% off, was still $800 I would say return it and recover your orange chair in that same fabric and still save money. It is not a stain that would be hidden due to the pattern, it is a tear that will only get worse over time. You should have received it for aboutg 80% off so shame on the store that sold it to you.

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 4:31 pm

    I love it – maybe you could use the armchair covers to make a slip to go over the headrest of the chair? OR just pick a block colour that matches and do it? I think that would look great. But I would fuse and patch it first so it doesn’t tear further.

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 4:48 pm

    Hm. The tear is almost on center. What about doing something really fun, like a monogram patch? Perhaps something like, this, on a blue background?

    Because what would be cooler than an personalized chair?

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 5:01 pm

    Send it back. They are crazy to charge you $800 for something that damaged. Darning it probably won’t work because there is a lot of tension across the top of a chair. If you have upholstered, you know that most fabric is pulled really tight. I liked the idea of sticking fusible interfacing underneath. You could make an applique of the armcovers, (called antimacassars). But really, $800 for something not perfect? If it was $300, then okay. You should talk to the store manager and say that you MIGHT take another one in the Chicago area if the damage is not on the top. I don’t think anyone else will pay that price. Offer them $300 and see what they say. What you should do is: find out what the fabric is and recover the orange chair with it, or something very similar. I’ll bet that you can find what the fabric is within a week. Or, go to another store and tell them you are going to feature the chair in an article and want to know if you can buy matching fabric for an antique or something to match it. Good luck. did you see the SMEG (I hate that name) refrigerator on the new Novogratz show? Ann

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 5:14 pm

    Agree with the rest of them – that chair is SERIOUSLY over-priced!! And with the tear in it – they really should have marked it Waaaaaaaaay down! Half off is no bargain. I think you can have a beautifully furnished home on a budget. I personally prefer to stick with solid colored pieces (chairs, couch) and then change up the pillows and other items in the room. Easier and much less expensive when I want to change things!

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 5:52 pm

    Send it back Nicole. I know you LOOVE IT. But think of all the things you can purchase with that $800. By no means am I to tell you how to spend your money, but with a perfectly fine (and gorgeous) chair (that works with your home!), why bother? Find some fabric that looks similar and make a pillow. :D

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 6:16 pm

    Well, as a cat owner and new mom I’m thinking that you might go buy the new one and get a tear in it the next day! I think with the pattern and a creative repair you’ll love it just as much. I say keep it!!

    (although I do love the orange one to death)

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 6:41 pm

    You might want to ask Amanda at Spruce ( and see if it’s self-fixable before taking it back. She might have a good idea to save it!

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 7:13 pm

    Wow! tough call. After reading all the comments and loving this chair just as you do, I vote to return it.

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 7:48 pm

    I think that having things in your home that make you smile when you look at it is worth a million bucks. With that said, tears grow. Even if mended it will be a weak spot and that is an area that will be worn being a head rest. So, will this chair still make you happy next year if the 2″ inch tear becomes a 10″ one or you have to put a cute throw over the mended area because it may not look right. If you are OK with the worse case, keep it and love it!

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 7:49 pm

    Hey Nicole…been reading your blog for a while…LOVE it :). If it were me, I would return the chair and recover the orange chair instead…it would be cheaper than $800 for a torn chair.

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 7:52 pm

    I’d say keep it … you seem to really like the chair. It’s totally fixable. I’ve had a ton of luck with the combo patch/ darn method (it helps reinforce the seam / but the patch is hiddon). It’s simple – slide a piece of fabric that matches under the tear and sew the tear together (while sewing through the fabric below at the same time). I’ve used it on everything from upholstery, clothing to even professionally repairing a grand drape in a theater. Good luck! Again – if you love it, keep it. You’ll be glade when the first toddler with yogurt stains it and you didn’t pay full price.

  • Reply
    orange sugar
    August 3, 2011 at 8:12 pm

    Not diggin the chair or the pattern. I prefer the orange one. Love orange.

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 8:13 pm

    What a great deal & a tragic flaw!! If you keep it, I suggest you slaughter one of the arm rests:

    1. fuse ultrahold heat’n bond to the top of the patch (matching up the print of course)

    2. cut the piece in a round 2x larger than your rip and tuck it behind your rip.

    3. have your husband help you match the ripped edges together while you lightly iron the two pieces together.

    4. Let the patch cool.

    5. once cool, hand sew around the perimeter of the rip, securing the underneath patch in place

    6. apply fray check to the edges of the rip & matte down

    7. if all else fails, use the arm covers to make a headrest cover.

    8. check the fabric with the arm rest to see how it irons before taking an iron to the chair. This only works on linen/cotton fabrics.

    This method is great if you don’t want to darn the fabric & if you don’t want a patch on top.

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 11:02 pm

    This chair has so much less charm than the orange one. Keep the orange! It looks so nice with your living room. Although maybe a shot of the whole room with this chair in it might change my mind. Still, not knowing how the room looks as a whole, keep the orange!

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 11:37 pm

    Sorry, but my vote is return the chair. You will always note the tear, even if it’s repaired, and may regret the (huge) purchase. The only way I would spend that much for a chair, any chair, is if it is in perfect condition. They should have marked it down MUCH further!

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 11:45 pm

    That chair is way too overpriced for something that is damaged in such an obvious way. I don’t think you could have a tear in a more visible spot.

    Plus it reminds me of something like this, only in more contemporary colors:

  • Reply
    August 4, 2011 at 12:30 am

    $800 is still really expensive, especially if it’s not in perfect condition. I agree with what someone else wrote above – there has to be fabric somewhere that looks similar to the anthro chair. Find it and recover the orange chair in it…

  • Reply
    August 4, 2011 at 12:52 am

    a tad too pricey for me!
    Still what about bright zigzag contrasted sitching? Maybe not the look you were going for but at least it doesn’t pretend to hide it!

  • Reply
    August 4, 2011 at 1:20 am

    I love, love, love your orange chair!!!! I say keep what you have!

  • Reply
    August 4, 2011 at 1:25 am

    If you love it, keep it!!!!:):)

  • Reply
    August 4, 2011 at 2:35 am

    I think I saw the chair at Anthro. I agree with some of the other comments, at $800. it should be perfect. $800 is not cheap. Any chance they might further reduce it? If you do keep it, I’m sure it can be repaired. The pattern will hide the stiching.

  • Reply
    August 4, 2011 at 2:40 am

    Find a giant fabric button and sew it there. It would look like it was meant to be there.

  • Reply
    August 4, 2011 at 8:47 am

    KEEP IT! Personally, I feel if the chair is solid construction and one that can be reupholstered throughout the years, then you totally scored. I don’t think $800 is too much for a heritage piece and not one that will be tossed when your tastes change. Plus, those mismatched legs are so fun! If you’re close to downtown Chicago, I have a really reasonable upholsterer that would probably be able to patch it for you at a good price. Email me and I can give you their contact info – along with a couple of pics of pieces they’ve done for me:)

  • Reply
    Karen J
    August 4, 2011 at 9:12 am

    I’m 100% for KEEPING the orange chair.

  • Reply
    August 4, 2011 at 9:44 am

    I think it can be fixed easily (I’ve done this before), but for $800 you might be able to have your old chair re-vamped and fall in love with it again. I did the loop stitch fix on a few chairs.

  • Reply
    How I Repaired a Tear in My Chair’s Upholstery | Making it Lovely
    August 4, 2011 at 12:01 pm

    […] « Floor Model, Half Off […]

  • Reply
    August 4, 2011 at 12:18 pm

    The orange chair is sooo much nicer…I vote keep the orange chair, take the ripped one back.

  • Reply
    Making it Lovely
    August 4, 2011 at 3:02 pm
  • Reply
    August 5, 2011 at 6:52 pm

    Sweet! Now you can take it off your Wishlist!

    FYI: Those spectator pumps you linked to are on sale for only $34!

  • Reply
    August 6, 2011 at 12:30 am

    P.S.-remember to take chair off your Wish List!

  • Reply
    September 15, 2011 at 10:22 am

    Are you kidding me? You paid $800 for a ripped chair? You must have more money than you know what to do with?!?! The chair is just average at best! :-((

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