Love where you live. Sign up for our newsletter

What’s a cheap way to fix chairs with broken caning?

by on Nov 9, 2006

Our dining ‘set’ is a thrift-store rescue; it was on its last legs and probably would have been put down (sent to the landfill) if I hadn’t come along to save it ($40). I think it was actually once a nice piece of furniture, built by the White Furniture Co. of Mebane, North Carolina.

But like any rescue, this one has some rough edges. check out the broken caning on the backs of the chairs: 

 Our broken dining room chairs

More broken caning. Detail

Alicia and I have finally decided to get around to fixing these. Trouble is, we’re not sure what to do. She thinks maybe we could glue in slats of wood and then spray paint the whole chair. I think maybe stretching some fabric over the back (after removing the caning) would be better.

Any suggestions? We’d like to keep it simple (we don’t plan on using thrift-store furniture forever) and cheap (under $75).  



Related: there’s an interesting book of photographs about the closing of the White Furniture Co. factory and its effect on the town. More pics here and here

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. Tanked out the caning and weave through the middle section just left to right in a continuous figure eight.. Any twine or wool or whatever. No damage to them, and cheap too.