I came across these two amazing foldable chairs at a thrift shop and instantly fell in love with them. I had never seen anything like them before and I couldn’t figure out how to unfold them. After playing with them for 10 minutes and feeling like a complete moron, I turned them upside down I found out they were Leg-o-Matic chairs which had directions on how to open and close them and were stamped with the date JUN 1962. I didn’t know anything about them, but I knew I had to have them. So, in 90 degree heat I carried these babies home and did some research.
These chairs were manufactured by the Leg-o-Matic Company which produced folding tables and chairs from the 1940’s until the 1970’s and were heavily used in Airstream Trailers for their ease of storage. I just love the look and fun folding nature off them. If you are interested in getting your hands on some Leg-o-Matic’s, they sometimes pop up on eBay and Etsy and I have seen them at a couple of flea markets.
For this tutorial, I show the process of re-doing the fabric on one chair, but did both. I decided to re-cover the seat pads with one of my favorite fabric designer’s, Jessica Jones of How About Orange, Outside Olso Picket Dust fabric for a fresh rehab.
Stain to cover up the scratches on the chair
With a few folds of the chair legs, it folds up into this great compact, great- for- storage chair. I love that these aren’t your typical folding chairs, they have so much more beauty to them.
I removed the chair pad by unscrewing the screws that held it in.
I decided to do two layers of fabric for these chairs, one muslin and one the outer fabric. I did this to add some extra padding to the seat cover without removing the original seat fabric (in true Salvage Love style) ALWAYS MAKE SURE TO IRON YOUR FABRIC! I hate ironing but this is key for making sure the fabric fits without any bulges.
As you can tell, my measurements are not perfect, but that’s okay, in the end it all works out. I started stapling on one side, then the opposite side, by pulling the fabric taut and stapling all the way down, all while checking the top of the seat pad to ensure it is smooth. In order, right first, left second, corners, then top then bottom.
Stapled it all around ( I fixed that bulging right hand corner but lost the photo I am sorry) I just undid the staples, cut some excess muslin and pulled it tighter, then re-stapled. I then screwed the seat pad back in the chair.
For the wood on the chair, I rubbed a similar color stain over it to cover up any scratches and I was done!