Midweek Modness: Steelcase Tank Chair Update

fixit Steel case after

Enough of the new stuff. Let’s get back to some vintage chair porn. After many years I finally finished my Steelcase Tanker chair upholstery project. To be more accurate, I paid someone to finish my project.

Let me recap. I found this lovely chair abandoned on the sidewalk (see picture below). It had a few tears in the vinyl seat, but I brought it home to be my office chair and it served well in that capacity for many years. But the eventually the seat covering shredded. I found a lovely floral fabric at the Value Village and set out to upholstery it myself (I’ve done it before).

I got the seat back done, but when I went to replace the seat cushion the springs and everything discombobulated and I couldn’t get it back together. Plus, when I assisted friends on upholstery projects before, I had access to their tools. After stabbing myself for the hundredth time by trying to reset a spring with needlenosed pliers, I realized that I needed to get a professional in on the job. And then I procrastinated actually taking it in to be fixed for a really long time. When we sold the house, I realized I had to take action to justify bringing the chair with us.

fixit steelcase before

I ended up taking the Steelcase chair to Old Fashioned Restoration at the top of our street. One thing I love about this neighbourhood is how many services there are. Tailors, shoe repair guys, electricians and framers — you name it, we’ve got it! I think they did a fantastic job, especially because they had to rebuild the seat. It feels just as comfy as I remember.

So why didn’t I go for a full restoration with vinyl? I love vintage but I also worry about things looking too retro, like museum pieces instead of nice homey things. I don;t know what era this oversized floral is from, but it was just so irresistible that I had to buy it and it matched the muted palette of the metal of the chair. And now the two finds have been married!