I really think there’s something to be said for merging the conservative style of a vintage chair with the flair of modern-day, animal print fabric.
It just works.
When I found these chairs, the seats were initially upholstered with a floral print fabric. However, instead of asking my husband, Gary, to reupholster the seats in more of the same, I decided to try something different.
Enter: zebra print fabric (my favorite of all the animal prints).
I think zebra print really works on these mahogany chairs for three reasons: the sharp contrast, it’s unexpected, and the pattern is used in moderation.
Reserved meets wild.
The mahogany wood and elegant shape of the chairs definitely presents a sophisticated, formal look. On the other hand, the fun, care-free feel of zebra print captures your attention. I think it’s the combination of these formal and fun elements, which make these chairs very versatile and interesting—I could see these chairs in a formal dining room just as easily as I could see one as a desk chair in a den.
Do you think of zebra print when you see mahogany?
Me neither. Well at least not initially, I didn’t. But over the years, I’ve really come to enjoy using funky fabrics, such as zebra print, to update more traditional-looking chairs. I think the appeal lies in the fact that it’s unexpected. Plus, I also think it’s fun to take a piece and modify it in a way that probably wasn’t anticipated when it was built.
Think: small doses.
While I love these zebra print upholstered chairs, I don’t think I would love having a zebra print living room sofa (though I’m convinced it can be done!). My point is, I think I fancy these chairs because the zebra print makes a statement, but isn’t overwhelming.
So, to sum it all up…
Vintage mahogany chairs + zebra print fabric = fabulous.