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Making Upcycled Arched Dining Chairs

Home DIY Sep 14, 2023

Honestly, this is such a huge transformation and I’m so excited about it!

I’ve been super into arched chairs and I recently realised that it’s possible to create your own using very simple chairs that I feel like are everywhere and perfect for an update. Updating these old, drab chairs was so easy and seamless with the use of the Bosch NanoBlade, I used it to cut down the backs and then cut up the dowel to reattach them. After this I sanded all of the chairs and gave them a fresh stain. The Bosch NanoBlade is so easy to use and is perfect if you’re just getting started as a DIYer, as it’s perfect for small cutting jobs in both the home and the garden.

Before & After

I’ve seen these old style dining chairs everywhere and have been wanting to upcycle a set into something fun and modern. I ended up finding this set on Facebook Marketplace for $40, and the little old lady who sold them to me was so sweet! She even suggested that maybe I should upcycle them 🙂


The Bosch Cordless NanoBlade

The Bosch NanoBlade is such an easy tool to use and a great one to have in your tool kit as an upcycler. It’s so compact and lightweight and is vibration-free, but works effectively at creating cuts and is perfect for a beginner who may be a bit apprehensive about a bigger blade. Just hold down the safety button and the on button, and you’re ready to start creating your own before and afters as good as this one!


  • 4 x old dining chairs
  • Dowel
  • Wood Glue
  • 4 x 45cm diameter wood rounds (if you plan to replace the seats)
  • Foam or batting
  • Upholstery fabric (I used old leather, green velvet, bouclé and also a plain timber round which I stained the same and the chairs)


How to:


I knew that I wanted to create a clean arch, but to do that I would need to lower the wood part of the back to make it a more comfortable height. So to start, I cut the arch where the existing join was. This was quite straightforward and clean thanks to the NanoBlade. 


The padded upholstered back simply came straight out, and the arch popped off.


I was so happy when it was so easy to remove the arch from the upholstered back, I was expecting it to be glued in but it wasn't which was great.


I then measured and marked the remaining back of the chair, and using my NanoBlade, cut at the mark to lower the back. I wanted to create a back height (at the top of the arch) that was between 30cm - 40cm above the top of the seat. That's from the floor, about between 78 - 84cm. 




To reattach the arch, I first measured the centre of the circle of both cuts from the arch and the remaining back. I then used my drill with spade drill bit attached to drill a hole in the centre of all pieces.  



After this, I used my NanoBlade to cut the dowel down to fit in the holes.


I then added some wood glue in to the holes on the chair and pushed the dowel pieces inside. 


Next, I put some wood glue inside the holes in the arch, lined them up to the dowel and reattached the arch. I then left the glue to dry overnight so that the arches were sturdy. 


To finish off the chairs, I gave them all a really good sand to remove the orange varnish. I also sanded the joints of the arch so that they were nice and cohesive. I did consider adding wood filler, however, I tried it and it didn't result in the look I was after. 


Next up, I re-stained the chairs using Old Baltic Stain and Varnish. 


For the seat of the chairs, I wanted a really modern look so I decided to replace the rectangular seat with a round seat. I simply used a round panel of wood and did a few options: one recycled leather, one in green velvet, one in white boucle and one wood option with no upholstery. To finish, I screwed the seats in from the underside using the original holes and screws. 

Like what you see? Or just want to save it for later?

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This project is in collaboration with Bosch


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