Upcycled Furniture

Project DIY: Painted Kitchen Chairs

We love a good DIY project! Not only is it fun to give new life to old things, it is a great way to keep items out of the landfill. Part of a sustainability mindset is finding ways to use what we already have and therefore purchase less.

The DIY Project: Brightening up some old oak kitchen chairs

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Why I Love It

I love these chairs because they are solid wood and built to last.

The Plan

My plan was to brighten these chairs up with some paint. They were a little tired and dated, so I wanted to give them and extra boost.

Supplies List

This list contains affiliate links, as an Amazon Affiliate I earn from qualifying purchases

The Process

The first task was to give these chairs a good cleaning. The chairs were in good condition and I chose not to sand them as a scrub prepped them well enough for the paint I was using.

For the turquoise chair I went with a bright solid turquoise paint. I had previous success with a durable outdoor finish paint, so wanted to give that another try. This type of paint required no sealant, just multiple coats of paint.

For the pink chair, I had fallen in love with the bright pink colour and decided to break it up with the light grey. This was a chalk paint, so after a few coats of paint, I sealed it with furniture wax. This chair took a long time to do because of the need to tape off each section before painting, but it was worth the effort!

The Finished Product

Have you ever refinished furniture before? What project would you like to try?


  • Holly

    Alison, these turned out beautifully! I LOVE that you took some old chairs and breathed new life into them. Your first paragraph alone made me smile! I agree, why not keep things out of the landfill every chance we get? Plus, so many of the items people toss aside are constructed far better than anything we could find today at a reasonable price!

    The pops of color really add such a charm to your home. What a neat project! You must smile each time you walk by these chairs? 😊

    Thank you for sharing such a fun DIY with each of us! I love your projects and your heart to see us all live a more sustainable life. What pure joy you are! ❀

    • A Sustainably Simple Life

      Thanks so much, Holly! It is so rewarding to be able to keep things–especially well constructed things–out of the landfill. I love having bright pops of colour in my house πŸ™‚ The pink chair went to a little girl’s room who was having a pink/grey theme. So cute! Thanks so much for commenting and sharing your thoughts πŸ™‚

  • Olivia

    This is so lovely! I’ve been looking for ideas what to do during these times and this DIY seems like a great one! The chairs turned out looking amazing!

    xoxo Olivia

  • Jaya Avendel

    Oo, I love the pink and white, and I know what you mean about loving furniture that is build well; it is a shame to give it away or throw it out so I love that you refinished these chairs; they will be around for a long time to come.
    I have a handful of old oak chairs too and am inspired to freshen them up . . . thanks so much for sharing!

    • A Sustainably Simple Life

      Thank you! I felt I was taking a chance with the pink, but I really fell in love with it! Even just painting the legs and backrest of the chair can be a great start to freshen them up πŸ™‚ Would love to see yours if you do refinish them!

  • glowsteady

    They look amazing!! I’m loving seeing them spruced up with some fun colours. My grandparents have an old dining set that they don’t really use these days that’s a little beaten up and we were looking for ideas to do something similar with that, so thanks for the inspo x


    • A Sustainably Simple Life

      Thanks so much! πŸ™‚ That’s amazing you’re looking at refinishing your grandparents’ set! That’s a great way to treasure something that’s been in the family for a long time but also have it work in a new space.

  • Lisa's Notebook

    Oh I LOVE this! You’ve made such a good job of upcycling, and the colours are gorgeous, the two tone is so effective. We have some old chairs in our garage that I was going to get rid of but you’ve inspired me to think again now, thank you!

    • A Sustainably Simple Life

      Thanks so much! It was fun to play with the bright colours πŸ™‚ That’s awesome you’re thinking of giving your chairs a makeover!

What are your thoughts? Let us know in the comments!

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