ISSUE 7  |  At the Table

DIY: Paulistano Armchair with White Canvas Cover

February 15, 2010 6:00 PM

BY Allison Bloom

While scouting for a modern seating option recently, I found myself gravitating to the beautifully proportioned and capacious Paulistano chair—a Brazilian version of a Bauhaus classic, designed by Pritzker Prize–winning architect Paulo Mendes da Rocha—which combines soigné lines with comfort. DWR sells the frame and the cover separately, but I found the leather cover too pricey ($800) and too sleek for the vibe of my Mill Valley living room. The solution? I bought the phosphatized carbon steel version of the frame (it was on sale at the time) and commissioned a local seamstress to make a cover using heavyweight canvas painter's dropcloth finished with black stitching. To recreate the look, the Paulistano Chair Frame is available in phosphatized carbon steel or polished stainless for $700 at Design Within Reach; Ace Hardware sells a Heavyweight Canvas Drop Cloth for $23.99.

Above: The White Leather Paulistano Chair that inspired my DIY project; via Bodie and Fou.

Above: The finished product with heavyweight painter's dropcloth slipcover.

Above: A detail of the black stitching.