Lots of personal projects getting done this summer and fall in anticipation of our first baby due in January.
Two years ago a gentleman brought me this rocker which he had used on his porch at his house on Lake Erie for many decades. He asked if I'd like to have it- that he wanted it to go to a good home. Sure! He was pleased it was going to live on, I was pleased to have it. I planned on stripping off the old paint, refinishing it, and weaving a new seat and back for my front porch, but like many personal projects it sat in my storage room waiting for that rare opportunity where I had a lag in work. It never came.
Fast forward to late spring 2014. With a baby on the way we knew we needed a rocker for all those hours of soothing and feeding. Looking over my collection of to-do furniture, my eyes went straight for the old Lake Erie porch rocker. It is comfortable and sturdy, yet compact enough for our tight living space.
My dear husband did the honors of stripping off the layers of old paint. It took many coats of nasty Strip-Ease to get down to bare wood. Gloves, long sleeves, eye protection, and ventilation is a must with this stuff!
We found that we kind of liked the way the old paint looked mostly removed. The dark forest green was gone leaving shades of chartreuse and turquoise that had seeped into the wood grain- ages of paint that looked really cool and not something that could be duplicated. So we stopped the stripping process and sanded off the remaining residue.
After a few coats of matte polyurethane (done outside and dried in the garage- that stuff is nasty too!) and with some light sanding between coats, we had our rocker ready for a new seat and back. Initially I planned on doing a smoked splint (example here), but decided on Cane Binding in a herringbone pattern. Hands down my favorite material and weave that only gets better with age.
I added green upholstery padding to the inside of the seat. It will help the top and bottom of the seat work together to last longer and adds a little extra cushion.
Another reason I like Cane Binding is that it can be just as finished on the back as it is on the front.
"Mom and Dad" and the finished rocker- it looks so small next to us! But it is just the perfect size for her nursery and is comfy to sit in. I am 29 weeks along here. It has all gone too slow and too fast at the same time. But with each finished project I feel more ready for the baby girl to be born!
E Emza Uphill