Wednesday, July 25, 2012

a swedish gucci.

I know, right? In what free world is Gucci Swedish? Perhaps a more fitting title to my post would have been "A Gucci Inspired Ikea Solsta Olarp Chair Hack DIY Tutorial", but how un-fun is that?! Lawd. That's a title only NPR would find exciting. 

As the Mr. and I began to put the finishing touches on the den (flowers in vases, throws folded, etc.), we still felt like it was a bit empty. After spreading out all of our apartment furniture throughout la nueva casita, we really only had a couch and chair available for seating in the den. We could sit about four people comfortably, but our entertaining dreams were a bit loftier than four invitees.

Being rather tired of spending money, I really started honing in on this Solsta Olarp chair at Ikea:
At 65 bucks a pop, you really can't find a better price for seating, but the appearance of such a chair was *SO SAD*.

Obvi, the chairs were going to need a little oomph if I was going to be proud to have a pair of them in our den, but I wasn't sure what to do. I initially thought about painting bold stripes on the chairs, but wasn't quite sure how I would handle the rounded back and cushion. Dropping the idea of painting stripes all over the chair, I still kept the idea of stripes in my mind.

Whilst on a mountain-laden vacation with the fam, my cousin and I were looking at handbags and we kept talking about the classically fabulous single, bold, vertical stripe that Gucci so beautifully wears.

It is such a classic, simple concept that we thought could really pop with some fun colors on the canvas backing of the Ikea chairs, no? I liked the green but really wanted to make it a bit more "kelly" than "forest", and I absolutely love the perfection of kelly green paired with navy blue.

I collected my supplies...
2 Solsta Olarp Chairs

one-inch FrogTape

Behr's "Navy Blue" flat wall paint

Behr's "Green Grass" flat wall paint

I unpacked the chairs from all of their wrappings...

...and used a tape measure to find the absolute center of each chair's back.

I decided that I wanted my center stripe to be three inches thick, so I used a level to insure that the lines I traced were absolutely vertical from the measured points on both the chair's back and the seat cushion.

After lightly tracing my center stripe in pencil, I taped off the chair and cushion with the FrogTape.

I began by applying a thin, dry coat of the Navy Blue paint...

...and once it was dry, I added a second, thicker coat!

While the paint was still damp, I removed the tape to see the results!

I repeated the same process on the second chair and allowed the center stripe to drive overnight. The following day, I applied painter's tape along the outer edge of the center stripe so that no green paint would mar the blue stripe. I decided to use blue painter's tape here since it is a bit less sticky than the FrogTape and would not pull up the blue paint I had already applied.

As the tape is one inch wide, I used small strips of tape to help measure and mark off the width of the green, outer stripes.

I then lined up the painter's tape with the edge of the markers so that the outer stripes were taped-off completely.

After removing the marker-place-holders, I applied a thin, dry coat of green paint followed by a thicker coat!

Just like with the blue center stripe, I removed the tape while the paint was still damp to prevent peeling, and be still my heart, a Swedish Gucci met my eyes!

The pair of chairs come together perfectly with a little octagonal campaign table to create the added seating we needed at a sinfully cheap price with a splash of Gucci!

May Gucci and Ikea live on in wedded bliss forever and always.


  1. Eryn - LOVE this idea! Looks so awesome! Does the paint feel hard or rough or any of that jazz? You probably said already but what kind of paint did you use?

  2. Thank you! I used flat wall paint for this project - it is a bit rougher than the canvas, but as the paint only touches your back and rear end, we haven't found them uncomfortable at all!


  3. Oh, duh. I went back and looked and totally saw the huge awesome swatches. Wow! I really want to try this.