A Quick Makeover for IKEA Chairs


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I know.  I am fully aware that when I utter the word “Ikea” that some people shudder.  They associate Ikea with poorly made college dorm room furniture with peeling veneer and wobbly parts. They also associate it with the “Do It Yourself 859 Pieces to Assemble” furniture unit.  I get it.  I understand.  

Knowing that – I ask you to please hear me out.  Ikea has some good stuff. They do.  You just have to be selective about the items you buy.  So, no plastic veneers for this girl.  It has to be solid wood. The design and engineering of the furniture has to be good.  In general, I avoid their lower end items and instead focus on their mid range and higher end items. 

Also, as someone who prefers white or light colored upholstered furniture – I am a big fan of slipcovers.  Slipcovers can be washed.  Slipcovers can be replaced.  Buying a whole new sofa – well that’s not so easy. 

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With the holidays around the corner, I realized that we needed some additional chairs that were comfortable for people to sit in. 

Reasons for Buying the Chairs

So, when I came across these Ikea chairs for sale by an acquaintance – I bought them.   They fit the bill.  They were affordable.  (Check) They were comfortable (Check) They had slipcovers that could be washed (Check).  The chairs were relatively light weight and could be carried up and down the stairs to the basement to be stored when not in use (Check).

Drawbacks to Buying the Chairs

The only catch is – Ikea no longer makes this particular line (known as NILs) of dining room chairs. 

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Another drawback is that these chairs is their espresso stained legs. To my eye, that definitely needs to be updated. 

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Additionally, while these slipcovers are in fairly good condition, I noticed that they were starting to pill and fray.  

With all this in mind, I have decided to give these Ikea chairs a quick makeover.  Clearly, some updates were needed.

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Our favorite SLH employee, Belle decided to model the chairs for you. She is convinced I bought all the chairs for her.  Belle is allowed to jump on our furniture including the dining room chairs and sofa.  Sometimes, she had muddy paws and this is why I love slipcovers. They are a necessity in this house.

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Here are my plans for giving these Ikea chairs a quick makeover.

1. Remove the existing slipcovers.

2. Take all the chairs outside and using my orbital sander – remove the espresso colored stained legs.

3. Sand the legs, with the goal of reaching the raw unstained wood.  (This is a goal, let’s see what actually happens)

4. Seal the newly sanded legs with clear wax. 

5. Order new slipcovers in a linen-cotton blend fabric.

There are a variety of places you can order slipcovers for Ikea furniture.  Replacing your slipcovers is a really easy way to update your furniture and extend its life.  It’s also much more affordable than replacing the entire piece of furniture.

The company I most frequently order slipcovers from is known as Bemz.  The slipcovers they produce are good quality and hold up well.  You can also order slipcovers that are made out of higher end fabrics such as linen and velvet.  Although the company is located in Europe, the shipping of their products is incredibly fast and affordable.  Also – and this is a big bonus – Bemz still sells slipcovers for furniture lines that Ikea no longer produces. This means, I can buy new slipcovers for my chairs!

You can also order replacement slipcovers for Ikea furniture by doing searches on Ebay and Etsy.  There are other companies that keep in stock and sell ready-made slipcovers specifically for Ikea furniture. However, I have not ordered from these other companies so I am not familiar with the quality of the slipcovers or the timeliness of shipping. 

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Finally, you likely already know, you can order replacement slipcovers for your furniture from Ikea.  (This is assuming, of course, that you have a furniture line that Ikea still produces.)

So stay tuned.  When the chairs have been updated and the makeover is complete, I will post photos.  If there are any complications along the way, I will share them with you. 

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Belle and I thank you for stopping by the blog today.  We hope to have renewed your faith in Ikea furniture.  At the very least, we hope you share our appreciation of some good slipcovers. 


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