maturity is admitting your weakness {i love chairs}

I think a sign of maturity is when one can recognize and admit to areas of their life they are weak in without giving justification for their actions. I wholeheartedly admit my weakness for random chairs. I lose all self control when I see a random chair for under $10.00. I just can’t help myself. For instance this stunner of a dirty chair below. I went estate sale shopping with a friend. Before I walked out the door Chris kindly requested that I not come home with anymore chairs. It was a whopping $5.00. How does one summon enough self control to walk away from that?

It is just perfectly wonderful all clean and in the playroom.

I’m a sucker for all kinds of chairs. This little beauty has been about 4 different colors. I painted it turquoise to go with the party colors. About 2 days before it had been orange and used in a photoshoot.

Some chair purchases were not under $10.00, but Eames chairs are an investment worth making in my opinion. I am weak.

Then there are the truly random, like old movie seats and I don’t even know how to name the round chair.

I have chairs in the garage, on the front porch, in the attic…awaiting their rebirth.

Then there are the chairs that despite how loud I hear Chris saying, “please no more chairs.” I cave to weakness. Chairs are wonderful photo props for all those sessions I am no longer doing.

I bought the vintage school chair and wondered where I was going to put it. The very next day I was on Apartment Therapy and saw this picture of Restoration Hardware’s new line for kids and babies. The chairs are $99.00 each and child sized. However, I loved the look of all those chairs together and thought it would be so perfect in my kitchen. I emailed Chris the photo.

In my email I reminded him that one of the things he loves about me is my need for constant change. I also reminded him how incredibly frugal I am…and sweet talked him into letting me get more chairs. You see, I remembered where I got that first chair.

I went back and got 5 more. I can’t reveal my source…it is not mine to reveal. Sorry. I know I am mean. Biggest Brother loves to clean up really dirty things. Too bad he doesn’t like cleaning up himself as much.

My new dining room chairs. Once I moved them in I stepped back to admire them. My kitchen now has vintage school chairs, a yardstick backsplash, chalkboard, and globes….I’m starting to think I have a weakness not just for chairs, but for old school rooms too.

And the best part…the reason I will admit weakness, but also proudly justify my weakness. My 6 vintage school chairs turned dining room chairs cost me:

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  • Lisa Melnick - So cute. There is this place in Grand Bay Alabama called White House Antiques…she always has cute stuff for good prices. Whenever I leave her store I am so inspired to step out of my comfort zone and change things up…I love chairs too. Your pics are SUPER cute!!
    Lisa

  • Nicole - Oh my – I saw the AT post and immediately went to ebay and craigslist! And you have a WAREHOUSE worthy stash of them somewhere!?!? AAAAARGH! The kitchen is fantastic!!!

  • Dina - I LOVE chairs TOO!!! And my husband feels the same as your’s TOO!!!! πŸ™‚
    Your school chairs remind me of when I was teaching in this tiny little town and the school let me bring home about 10 old wooden school chairs. They were just collecting dust in the basement of the school… Can you even believe that??! LOVE this post! I just snagged an old ugly chair from gw a few weeks ago… I am in LOVE! 6 bucks, baby!

  • Sarah - Ashley, I love your decor. So much. I’m starting to decorate my first home πŸ™‚ Will you PLEASE tell me where I can find a chair like your giant round one? I love her. She’s full of character.

  • Evie - what a great chair story! i love people who can look at something like an old beat-up chair and see their potential/possibility. i think thats a gift from Jesus… isn’t that what He did for us, how He would view us? :0) He sees our potential, loves on us… makes us beautiful! :0)

  • beth - i love old chairs too…..and have tons of them like you !
    i always think “photo shoot” or maybe the kids will want them for their apartments. but they never do and yet i keep buying.

    it’s better than gambling, i say.

  • Mandy - What is that giant round chair thing and where do you find something like that – I LOVE it!!!! great job on the awesome deals – you can’t pass stuff like that up!

  • Ellisha Schultz - I share your love for chairs. I’m running out of room to put them in my house =) Glad to know that I’m not the only person with that passion =)

  • laura - whoa, they look just like restoration hardware. amazing! i’m gonna miss the red a little, though:).

  • Sarah - I have a horrible weakness for chairs too! I bought 3 chairs in one weekend about a month ago. They are all waiting for their new life. And my husband also asks me to PLEASE buy no more chairs. We have many. And I always see more I love.

    I wanted to sneak that big round one out of your house, but thought it would have been rather hard to sneak and even if I managed, there wouldn’t have been room in my little car. πŸ˜‰

    I love the new look around your kitchen table πŸ™‚

  • Shannon - ah-ma-zing! Love the new chairs, what a great find! There is fewer shopping thrills than finding something you LOVE at a price that is out of this world!

    Thrifting is the best, and you have outdone yourself! Way to go!

  • Jeannette - Only Ashley! I love your school house chairs – they look perfect! And, all your other chairs are perfect too!

  • RachelC - That is impressive. Hats off!

  • rachel denbow - Yep. I have twenty chairs in my 1,000 sq. ft. house. Twenty. And five outside on the front and back porches.

    I have two of those chairs mentioned and had to pass on three Heywood-Wakefield school chairs near Pryor this weekend.

    I feel like they are all orphans that need a good home!

  • Shannon{photos by shannon} - Ack! SO jealous!!! I recently found a school desk like this one here http://www.designspongeonline.com/2009/12/sneak-peek-jessica-helgerson-interior-design-2.html/jessica13 for $10 I can’t wait to get cleaned up. I saw that picture too and I wanted to get my hands on some of those chairs sooo bad. They look AWESOME in your kitchen!!

  • Lori K - Ashley!! I love this post…love the whole cotton picking’ story and seeing the evolution of chairs in your home. Can you believe the costs?? I love Restoration Hardware and you did it! Genius! They look great. (look at the cabinet in the restoration picture) pretty cool. metal cabinet all weathered. :0)

  • Shannon{photos by shannon} - Also…I love your collection of chairs! I always find myself navigating towards them too.

  • annalea - hide your source for sure. πŸ™‚ love them. so do other people have stashes of chairs in basements and garages too? cause i am thinking there must be more of us.

  • kristine - what a steal! can’t wait till we have our own home to use some of these ideas!

  • tasha roe - that is beyond insane!! $12?!!!! SCORE!
    i went to our local “antique mall” and saw 2 eames style school desk chair combos for $15 each. i couldnt fit them in my car to get home. went back and they were gone. gah! heartbreaker!

  • Vanessa {Bloom Right Here!} - Love all your chairs! The school chairs in the dining room are wonderful! I love all things “old school.” In fact, we almost bought an old school-turned-house recently. Unfortunately, it was in the wrong school district. πŸ™ Oh, those orange Eames chairs – I bought 4 of them yesterday for $2 each!!!! At the same sale I got 4 green industrial metal lab stools for $2 each! Couldn’t pass them up! Obviously you are not the only one with a chair weakness.

  • meg duerksen - awesome.

  • amy - Asley-
    You are truly a girl after my own heart! I have 4 old-fashioend school desks and only two kids. i just can’t help it. And now you have me seriously re-thinking the pink (YES, PINK!) little school chair just like yours there, that I passed up yesterday while antiquing. I kept eyeing it but also kept thinking of what my husband would say : )

    I am in love with your kitchen and chairs…sigh….!!!

  • Anna - Ashley, you have such a great eye when bringing home second hand items. I would have never thought to use school chairs! Could you please post a tutorial on how to clean old upholstered chairs or how to reupholster them? I am wanting to look for an old comfy chair for reading but am scared because I am kind of a germophobe. If I knew how to reupholster or clean the chair, I’d be good to go. Thanks!!!

  • Elisa B. - I love that. You go! What a deal. πŸ™‚

  • Liene - Beautiful and that for 12 US Dollars!

  • Martina - Great find with the school chairs! And can’t beat that price! Are they not too short? I love the look of Eames chairs and rockers but I’m beginning to think they are just too common for my taste. It seems like almost every one of my favorite home/lifestyle blogger’s houses has one.

  • Lisa P. - I’d love to have some of your chairs. I wouldn’t know where to start looking for such beauties!

  • bopha - quite impressive, but, since they are school chairs do you eat with your elbows in the air? πŸ™‚

  • Lauren - I am speechless…. I love your new chairs. The idea is awesome… and I am darn jealous of the price!

  • ashlee - wow!!! that looks fantastic! Those chairs would be fantstic in my kitchen:) I will be on the lookout for 8 of them!!!

  • Angela - Oh my! I didn’t think there was anyone out there who had a chair obsession like mine. My husband doesn’t understand it either. I once brought home the frame of a chair – you know, one of those from the fifties with a wooden frame and arms? Anyway, all the stuffing and upholstery had been removed (I’m guessing by a lady who was going to refinish it someday!)so I just threw a stack of blankets on the seat and back, covered it with a cute sheet and listened while all my friends said it was SO comfortable. Funny. That chair never did get refinished.

  • Heather - i love chairs, too. for me it’s the fact that something can cost $5 and be pretty and functional. i’m trying very hard to curb my habit, but it’s hard. really hard.

    your new chairs rock! and that bargain rocks even more!!

    i always loved your orange chairs and just realized from that photo that they are the exact same ones i bought from our church clean out sale! did you say they are eames? for reals? i got both (the only two they had) for $10.

  • christina larsen - OK, you tempt us with things we can’t have. I love those chairs. Would love to know where they come from.

  • Jane - Wow…what a find! The chairs look great!

  • Rachel - i need to make my husband read this post some he doesn’t think my collection of chairs is bad! wondering if you’d ever give some tips on how to print out your pictures so they look like they do on your computer screen. having an awfully hard time getting the color right!

  • Amanda Schultz - Oh how I love chairs, too! I always smile when I read your blog!

  • mamawanderluster - I just posted about those Restoration Hardware chairs too so I am EXTREMELY jealous of your finds! In my dream craft area, I would have a worn harvest table surrounded by those chairs. What is it about the ‘schoolhouse’ look that is so enticing? Maybe we’re all trying to recapture our childhoods just a little bit.

  • Kara - I LOVE the big round chair! This makes me laugh bc ever since u got the “playroom” chair I have been telling my husband I want a chair for our bedroom but I want to get it cheap and he thinks its not possible! I always say “well Ashley found one haha!” I need to know ur sources πŸ™‚ We live in Tulsa also!

  • Philly - It’s so funny. I always hated old things until I found this blog. Loving the inspiration, and what a buy!

  • Helen - LOL – I joked to my Dh once, “You know, if it were up to me we’d probably have a house full of random chairs and vintage stoves. . . ” He just looked at me and I realized, oh yeah, we do.

    But your blog has given me justification to keep going, your house is so cool and almost every room has a second-hand piece that I have too – how often does that happen?

  • Misty - Every time I come to your blog I question my love for modern style because I love your house! and I check the calendar to see how much longer my husband has in the Marines so we can get out and get a house so I can do all this fun stuff! I have a weakness for chairs as well I bought two old school chairs the other day πŸ˜›

  • OrangeFarmhouse - Maike - Still in love with Eames! but the rest of your chairs will do fine here too…

  • susie whyte - you are the rudest person ever. πŸ™‚ lol. i have a huge thing for chairs and dressers. i bought a school chair like those, but the metal is a turquoise color. oh, my. it’s so pretty..and it’s original, not painted. my favorite part. how well are the kids able to reach the table for dinner in those chairs?? that’s the issue we’ve had w my old school chair at the table(the one i use is more from a middle school room). i have claimed it as MY chair for meals. πŸ™‚

  • julianna richman - sick, and I mean sick.

  • BriBedell - God. You are adorable. Seriously. You make me want to have 4 babies and be crafty to my hearts content! Thanks for being so cool πŸ™‚

  • jerusalem - i am right there with you – with both the chairs and the one-room-school house vibe! love it all!

  • Leanne - great find! love the new look in the kitchen!

  • Macy Dawn - Ooh! We had a set of four of these chairs at my house growing up. We used those little chairs for everything (fort building especially). I hope that my mom has held onto them all these years because they are the perfect size for little kids and are classic through and through.

    Great find!

  • Amy - I was wondering how you deep clean the chairs that you buy? That yellow one looks so difficult to clean. I just got into buying old/used furniture and I don’t know where/how to start DEEP cleaning..

  • Jodi - Unbelievable! That is amazing! What a score and find. Congrats!

  • cindy - OMG…I live in Mustang, OK and was ready to take off work, jump in my pickup and go get some of these chairs !!! Little disappointed that you can’t reveal your source but very happy that you were able to pick some up. Thanks for sharing all your great ideas with us πŸ™‚

  • Brooke - You are so AWESOME. I mean really. The fact that you had this vision and made it reality, I just love it. I have this AMAZING fabric I want to cover my dining room chairs with and it looks very much like your blog design. My hubby said it is too trendy and I will get sick of it. I told him I might, but then I will change it. I just changed the chairs a year ago. He is very practical, and I think he sometimes wonders how he married someone so quirky πŸ™‚
    THanks for coming over to meet my man….it meant a lot! πŸ™‚

  • courtney - After reading this post, I’m feeling a little obsessed with chairs m’self. Awesome.

  • Kenna S - I think that your affinity for chairs is endearing! You clearly have an eye for what could be.

  • barbara - so not fair! i want some of those chairs. i’m good. i practice the golden rule. i look out for my neighbor. i brush my teeth twice a day. sometimes i even floss. so why can’t i have some of those chairs. just 6. that’s all. see, not too many. i guess i’ll just have to look for them in sunny southern arizona. and then duplicate your fabulous look!

  • patti - amazing.

  • Amber - so not fair!…that you have this amazing ability to see usefulness in just about ANYTHING! love the new school chairs! (and the rest of your house as well!)

  • Desiree - At least it’s a functional fetish. People sit in chairs. I like all of them. The big round chair is especially unique!

  • Casa e Cose - HOLY COW!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I love your home. I love the chairs…I wish i could be as convincing with my husband as you are with yours! What an inspiring blog – im so glad i found it!

  • colleen - Love the new look but where do the eame’s chairs reside now? Orange is my favorite color so i hope they have a cool new home!I’m sure you found the perfect place… would love to know where it is!

  • Raychel - Ashley, how is it that you find such AMAZING things!!!????!!!!
    I am so jealous of your ability to find other peoples junk and make into your treasure. You are so creative and you inspire me greatly!!!

  • Devon - When I sat down yesterday with my morning coffee and read this (part of my morning routine) I laughed out loud! How very clever you are! Later on that day when I went and did a little flee market shopping of my own all I kept seeing were chairs. There were chairs EVERYWHERE! Thanks for opening my eyes πŸ™‚

  • AMS - OMG, I am sooooo relieved to find out I’m not the only one with the constant need to scavenge for vintage chairs… They make me so happy, just staying in my basement, waiting for their turn to be revamped.

  • Angie - You crack me up!!!! You are awesome and all your amazing ideas!

  • Paige - I am so envious that you can find deals like that! I’d probably agree to pay $60 per chair. I love them!

  • Megan N. - So Ashley, get this…Wednesday I read this post. Yesterday (Thurs) I was driving in downtown Healdton America…and what do i see on the side of the road? A sign…Old Healdton Elementary School desks and chair…set $15. Kenna had also seen this post on Wednesday. I immediately called her and asked if she wanted to buy one for the kids. I also bought one for my little JT when he gets older (ck him out on my blog! He’s one cute babe). Not as good a deal as you got, but i was surprised to stumble upon them in Healdton. Chairs look the same as yours and the desks are the ones that the lid lifts up (the kind that used to pinch our fingers!)…had to share this fun buy!

  • Jodi - I liked you on FB!

  • M for Short - Drooling. (And the $12 price tag is equally incredible.)

  • Jolie - Is it also a sign of maturity when you admit you are drooling with envy? Gorgeous chairs – what a find, and what a steal!!!

  • Brittany - Oh I’m so sad you can’t tell us where you got them! I live in NE Oklahoma and have been searching for the last month for chairs like that. Maybe you could give your source my contact info? I love, LOVE to buy some! πŸ™‚

  • wilson chung - hi there

    i’ve been looking for these school house chairs EVERYWHERE…any chance you can give me even just a hint as to where you got them?? pretty please!!?!

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