How to Cane a Chair – Cómo reparar el mimbre de una silla

Sometime last year, I found this little rocking chair in the trash in my neighborhood. I knew that I should not bring it home because we are trying to get rid of things and not clutter up our home any more than it already is, but I guess you already know what happened. The rocker was filthy and the seat was broken, but it was a cute little thing and I knew that it had potential. I did not want to keep it, but I did not want it to end up in the landfill either. It sat in our basement for a while until I put it in our yard sale for ten dollars. When it didn’t sell, I tried to sell it on Craigslist, but no one wanted it. After that it sat in our living room for a while, and people kept sitting in it. I knew that I needed to fix it before someone got hurt falling through the seat when it broke completely. A friend convinced me that I would be able to re-cane the chair by myself.

En algún momento del año pasado, encontré esta mecedora pequeña en la basura en mi vecindario. Sabía que no debería traerla a casa porque estamos intentando vaciar la casa y no embarullar la casa con más objetos de que ya tenemos, pero seguro que saber qué pasó. La mecedora estaba sucísima y el asiento estaba roto, pero era linda la sillita y sabía que tenía la posibilidad de ser aún más bella. No quería tenerla en casa, pero no quería que terminara en el basural tampoco. Se quedó en nuestro sótano por unos meses antes de salir para estar en nuestra venta de garaje. Pensaba venderla por unos diez dólares, pero no se vendió. Después intenté venderla en Craigslist, pero nadie la quiso. Después de eso estaba en nuestra sala por un rato y todo el mundo se sentaba allí. Sabía que tenía que arreglarla antes de que el asiento se rompiera completamente y alguien se hiciera daño. Un amigo me convenció de que sería fácil cambiar el mimbre original del asiento sin ayuda.

Antique rocker rescued from the trash

When my mom and Justin came to visit on the weekend of September 24, I recruited Justin to help me fix a couple pieces of furniture that I saved from the dump. He reattached the back of a small bench, while I removed the old cane from the rocking chair.

Cuando mi mamá y Justin llegaron de visita el fin de semana del 24 de septiembre, le pedí a Justin que me ayudara a arreglar unos muebles que había salvado de la basura. Él adhirió el respaldo de un banco pequeño mientras y quitaba el mimbre viejo de la mecedora.

Refinishing furniture

The cane was so old that it disintegrated easily, but the spline that used to hold the cane to the seat proved more difficult to extract.

El mimbre era tan viejo que se desintegraba fácilmente en mis manos, pero al final fue más difícil sacar la lengüeta de la ranura.

Refinishing furnitureRefinishing furniture

Justin helped while my mother took pictures.

Justin me ayudó mientras mi mamá sacaba fotos.

Refinishing furnitureRefinishing furniture

Then I took pictures of her.

Después yo saqué una foto de ella.

Mom

Kahlua refused to look at the camera, but she did not escape getting her image immortalized in a .jpeg.

Kahlua negó mirar la cámara, pero no escapó el hecho de que yo capturara su imagen en un archivo jpeg para siempre.

Kahlua the dog outsideKahlua the dog outside

While I was playing with the camera, Justin finished removing everything from the groove.

Mientras yo jugaba con la cámara, Justin terminó de sacar todo de la ranura.

Refinishing furniture

The next weekend, I brought several pieces of furniture out to sand. I could not find a mask, so I improvised with a bandanna. I do not recommend this solution. I was blowing sawdust out of my nose for a week.

El próximo fin de semana, saqué varios muebles de la casa para lijarlos. No podía encontrar una máscara y tuve que usar una bandana para intentar protegerme del polvo. No recomiendo esa solución. Salía aserrín cada vez que me sonaba la nariz por unas semanas.

Refinishing furnitureRefinishing furniture

Finally, I painted the rocker purple. It’s a bit bright, but I love it, and that is all that matters. Well, I guess Douglas should like it as well, but he hasn’t said that he doesn’t. Then, I ordered the caning kit from Amazon and waited for it to arrive. It would have been a little cheaper to buy the cane and the spline separately, but I liked that this kit from Peerless Rattan came with everything that I would need as well as an instruction booklet.

Después de lijar, pinté la mecedora de morado. Es un color vivo, pero me gusta a mí y eso es lo único que importa. Bueno, supongo que es importante que le guste a Douglas también, pero él no me ha dicho que no le gusta. Después pedí un paquete de todos los materiales que necesitaría para el proyecto de Amazon y esperaba que llegara. Hubiera sido un poco más barato comprar el mimbre y la lengüeta aparte, pero me gustaba este kit de Peerless Rattan que contenía todo incluso un manual de instrucciones.

Painting furniturePainting furniture

The kit arrived in a couple of days, but I did not have the time to start the project. Last week on my day off for a Jewish holiday, I was finally ready to work on the seat. The first step was soak cane and spline. Crème made sure that it did not escape from the tub.

El paquete llegó unos días después, pero yo tenía que esperar el tiempo para completar el proyecto. Por fin la semana pasada tuvimos un día libre por una fiesta judía y tuve el tiempo necesario. El primer paso fue remojar el mimbre y la lengüeta. Crème montó guardia para asegurar que nada escapara de la tina.

Caning a chair seat

Then, under the watchful eyes of my partner, I began positioning the cane and stretching it tightly.

Entonces, bajo la atenta mirada de mi socia, empecé a colocar el mimbre y estirarlo firmemente.

Caning a chair seatCaning a chair seat

Hammering the cane into the groove was easy. Once the cane was tucked neatly in, it was time to cut the excess around the perimeter. That proved much more difficult. It would have been easier had my chisels been sharp. The corners were the most challenging part, but I found that using the wedges in the corners helped.

Meter el mimbre en la ranura resultó ser fácil, pero una vez que estaba allí tenía que cortar el exceso y eso fue más difícil. Hubiera sido más fácil con unos cinceles más afilados, pero no los tenía. Las esquinas me costaron un poco, pero aprendí a usar las cuñas y eso ayudaba mucho.

Caning a chair seatCaning a chair seat

I probably should have done this outside, but then I would not have had my feline helpers.

Probablemente, debería haber hecho esto afuera de la casa, pero entonces no hubiera tenido la ayuda de mis colaboradores.

Caning a chair seatCaning a chair seat

The next step was to put glue in the groove and then hammer the spline in to hold the cane. I found out too late that I should have used a hammer rather than a rubber mallet. The rubber left black smudges on the cane, but it does not look bad. I am sure I could clean it off if I really wanted to.

El siguiente paso fue poner pegante en la ranura y hacer entrar la lengüeta con un martillo. Hubiera sido mejor usar un martillo en vez de un mazo de goma porque el mazo dejó unas manchas negras en la lengüeta, pero no se ve muy malo. Estoy segura de que lo podría limpiar fácilmente si intentara.

Caning a chair seatCaning a chair seat

I am proud of my first caning project. It turned out even better than I expected and was not hard at all. I highly recommend that you try if you have a chair with a damaged cane seat.

Estoy orgullosa de mi primer proyecto con mimbre. Salió mejor de que esperaba y no fue difícil de ninguna manera. Recomiendo que intentes si tienes una silla con un asiento de mimbre dañado.

Caning a chair seatCaning a chair seat

Here are the before and after pictures of my rocking chair. I love it!

Aquí están las fotos de antes y después. ¡Me encanta!

Caning a chair seat - before and after

Happy Homemaking!

¡Que todos tus sueños caseros se cumplan!

P.S. I was not compensated in any way for this review.

P.d. No recibí remuneración por escribir este artículo.

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About

I am a teacher, traveler, artist, writer, homemaker and a whole lot more. In January 2009, I bought the Cape of Dreams. It was the second house that I had ever owned, but it was the first that I bought by myself. I now live in the house with my husband Douglas, our dog Kahlua, and Crème de Menthe, the cat. Because, what life is complete without a little Kahlua and Cream? I love arts and crafts of all kinds, and I refinish furniture as well. We are slowly redoing our entire house. You can read about my projects on my blog www.CapeofDreams.com

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10 comments on “How to Cane a Chair – Cómo reparar el mimbre de una silla
  1. Janet Dear says:

    Amazing. I love it.

  2. It looks soooooooooooooooooo good! I love how funny Kahlua is with photos! And I love how Crème never lets anything slip past her – she’s always on the job! Your brother is quite, erm, ruggedly handsome *coughs while averting eyes*. Dang! The pic of the cane sticks all over your floor made me LOL! Great job, Jessica, as always!

  3. D'Arcy H says:

    I’m so impressed! I had no idea that you can buy caning kits. I thought you were going to learn to actually weave the fibers–haha! When I was a little kid my mom had a chair recaned. Back then, it was done by someone who was blind (I have no idea if that was really a “thing” or if only this caner was blind), but I grew up thinking you had to be blind to learn caning! Oh, and It was yours truly who busted through the antique chair. I was probably about 4. 🙂

    • Jessica says:

      I am so relieved that I did not have to be blind to complete this project. I am also glad that I did not have to weave the cane. I didn’t know that there were kits either, so it was a good thing that my friend told me about them. It was easy.

  4. Your chair is fabulous. My mother partially caned some of the chairs she left me. My answer to the ones that need attention are “DON’T SIT THERE!! I’m not sure even a caning kit would be easy enough for me. Jo @ Let’s Face the Music

    • Jessica says:

      I promise it’s so easy you could do it. You are very handy. I should have been more insistent that people not sit there, but at least it is no longer a problem!

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