Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Teak Couch refinishing and refoaming

So, as promised, I am going to tell you all about the sweet teak couch that I found and then refinished and re-homed!

laziest cat in the world not included

It all started on a fateful Civic holiday weekend, when Value Village was open but no one really knew that. We stopped by and came across a neglected and beaten teak three seater couch. The seat strapping was missing and the previous owners had put in pieces of plywood instead. The arm on one side was badly faded and water stained. The rest of the couch was in pretty good shape! AND AND AND... it had original cushions!

I did not take any before pictures of the couch, which was silly of me, but we pretty much dove into refinishing it the day after we brought it home.

By the way, when I say "we refinished" I should say "my husband refinished" because he is way better at this stuff than I am, plus I am way better at entertaining the kids while he sands and oils. It works for us :) BUT he insists I give him the credit *dang*

Anyways, If you are wondering how to refinish teak wood, it's actually quite easy! Teak is naturally water resistant and is quite hard wood so it is easy to sand and oil and will look glowing and magnificent in no time at all. For example, the arm that was weather beaten ended up being the nicest arm on the couch! And all Husband had to do was use a little medium and then fine sandpaper. There were a few vacuum cleaner dings underneath, so those got sanded, and really that was all that was needed. Husband gave it a quick all-over sanding with the fine paper, just to keep it all matchy matchy.

sanding away while watching TVO
this is the arm that was weathered. look how pretty it is!
   Then, he followed the directions on the can of Teak oil. Basically you do a coat, wait X amount of minutes, wipe it off, then repeat. Let it stand for 24 hours. The end! Teak oil is sort of pink looking and is very red-orange when applied. It's the colour of, well, teak! Its warm and radiant and beautiful. 

greg doesnt like to smile. especially for pictures his wife is taking of him working, while she does not. love you babe.

teak oil being applied. do this outside, it is smelly and probably not great to inhale unless youre into that kind of thing

it is very sticky when wet!

wiping excess oil from the frame

The cushions on the couch were a little more involved. I took them in to Rockland Textiles here in town and they ordered me some new high density foams. Here is where I learned something (that my dear aunt had warned me about but I had promptly forgotten... oops). When u are doing cushions for the bottom, high density good quality foam is important. However, the back cushions should be less dense, so that your back is more comfortable. Well, this couch has high density on the bottom and the back, which really doesnt make it look any different but it did seem a tad stiff on the back. With time it will wear itself in though!
old cushions. smelled funny. were falling apart. 

new cushions. not smelly. not falling apart.

We also had to put strapping, or webbing, in the seats. There were slats in the frame, and these little toothy metal clips that fit in them to hold the straps. These were all purchased at Rockland Textiles as well (they do a lot of weird reupholstering I think, in any case the staff that helped me were quite knowledgeable which is nice cause when u deal with vintage items it can be hard to find people who are acquainted with them). That was also very easy to do. It was just straight across, I know some couches weave from all sides and I'm sure there are tutorials online on how to do that.

slats for straps

this couch looks naked

all strapped and ready to go

Once the couch was reoiled and restuffed we placed an ad online and sold it to UsedEverywhere for use in their booth at Blissdom. I actually have started up a new "blog" that you can check out, it's called Furniture Of A Certain Disposition. That caught the eye of Jennifer on UsedEverywhere and hey now they have an awesome couch, I have lots of hits on my blog, I have a sold couch, and a writing opportunity! This post (well, edited a bit probably) will be the start of a series I'm going to do on the UsedEverywhere blog about finding stuff and making it cool. Which is obviously what I do, every day, of my life. Because yes, dear readers, I am that awesome :)

I will miss you, Lars.

Really, go look at my new blog! Do it!  here


  1. Looks fantastic! I'm so excited to see all your hard work pay off - it must be amazing to look back at where you started. renovation auckland

  2. Beautiful sofa and three cheers for the hubs! He seems very detail oriented and particular - and that's the right kind of person to be refinishing furniture. Your kitty is killing me in that first shot!

  3. You won't believe this but we found the identical couch at the side of the road on Saturday - as part of the Ottawa Free Giveaway weekend! We couldn't leave it there - your blog post will come in super handy as you have done all the leg work for us as we take on the refinishing etc. Rockland Textiles here we come....

    1. Wow louise what a score!!!! Did you know that I ended up finding the designer of this couch, i will try and find it again. Anyways his stuff sells for big $$$. So congrats! Can I ask where abouts you picked it up? I went out for a drive in gloucester/blair area and found squat :(
      Also feel free to ask me any questions!! I have some advice about the back cushions lol

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  5. Wow awesome. I loved it. Keep up the great work. You can check more here: https://myteakpro.com/