DIY Outdoor Chair Makeover

SEP 2, 2014 updated Oct 13, 2021

See how Spoonflower crew member Allie made over her plain beach chairs with Recycled Canvas and get the steps to DIY your own outdoor sling chair! 


ALLIE:    Given a choice to spend time indoors or out, I’m likely going to choose to be outside (humidity dependent– we are in the South after all!). And hanging out in the great outdoors is much more enjoyable when relaxing in a beautiful chair. I was surprised when finding something I liked proved to be difficult. Enter Recycled Canvas– the perfect durable fabric for updating simple wooden chairs. Read on for my five simple steps to make over inexpensive sling chairs for your outdoor space!


  • Beach chairs in need of an update (I found mine at World Market, these are similar)
  • Recycled Canvas (I used two designs by Mint Peony Designs: Mint Tribal Rows and Citron Tribal Rows)
  • Sewing machine

Step one:

Using the fabric pieces that came with my chairs, I traced them to cut new pieces from my fabric.


Step two:

I hemmed each side of the fabric piece.



Step three:

I finished the top of the fabric piece, creating a 2.5 inch sleeve for my 1 inch dowel to run through.

Step four:

I assembled my updated chairs.


Step five:




You can find me curled up in these chairs relaxing with a book through the end of summer and cozying up next to a bonfire into the fall!

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  • Great idea & such an easy re-do for old chairs. I custom design fabric using nautical charts that is then printed at Spoonflower. This would be a perfect application for that custom-to-each-client fabric.

  • Thanks for the great idea and tutorial. I have one of those chairs with a NFL logo on it and rather than get rid of the chair, I can recycle it with new fabric!