DIY or Buy: Vintage Mudcloth Rocker

It all started when my dad found an awesome little antique rocking chair on the side of the road. It was in sad shape, one arm was gone and the other was hanging. The fabric was falling off and only about half the nailheads remained. Little did that rocking chair know, but it was about to be transformed!!

dad with mcc

My sister claimed the chair and promptly bought this mudcloth inspired fabric.

mcc with leather

She currently has the “Hamilton” sofa from West Elm. It is lucious in every way. This sofa is the perfect shade of neutral leather and has a weakness for navy tribal prints of all kinds. So when she bought this fabric I almost died.

This particualr rocker was an easy reupholster. It had straight lines with no curves or arms to deal with. All we planned to do was remove each piece of fabric ? trace ? cut ? put new fabric back. It turned out to be just that easy.

Luckily this chair had been redone not that long ago and had new padding in the seat and new webbing on the back. So a huge hurdle had been passed for us there.


The old fabric that had been added was incredibly pressed and perfectly sized, so we ended up using it as a guide to repress our fabric with our iron. It worked really well. Each peice fit in like it had always been there.

cml pattern

cml iron

After we stapled in the fabric, we added an antique gold nailhead strip.

alc staple

alc front staple

cml nailhead

cml hammer


after angle mcc

It is amazing!!

Our list of supplies:

mcc tools

  • 3/4 yard of fabric
  • 5 yards of nailhead strip
  • scissors
  • staple gun
  • hammer

It took us 2.5 hours to complete, that included alot of pictures being taken and dealing with 3 crazy kids.

DIY or Buy? 

DIY Pros:

  • Super cheap! We spent a total of $34 dollars and only took about 2.5 hours
  • You can pick your own fabric to customize.
  • No one else will have this chair!

DIY Cons:

  • You will need some sort of upholstery knowledge, although this project was very simple. Not all upholstery projects are.
  • Unless you find a chair on the side of the road, you will have to buy one somewhere.
  • Took time and effort.

Buy Pros:

  • Buy and bring it home. No hassles.
  • Most likely new, or upholstered by professional.

Buy Cons:

  • Probably will cost a small fortune. I couldnt find anything just like ours, but I did find these. They are gorgeous, and there are two. But the cost difference is staggering.
  • Wont be able to pick your own fabric.
  • May not be unique.
  • No bragging rights.


So in my opinion, this is 100% DIY!

It was a really fun project. I got to spend the evening with my sister and mom and we created something stunning together.

feature mcc



3 thoughts on “DIY or Buy: Vintage Mudcloth Rocker

  1. Don’t you just love those inexpensive makeovers!! I am always upcycling furniture left on the curbs in my neighborhood. I makeover then sell! Better than filling up the landfills.

      1. Our neighborhoods have a Spring Cleanup twice a year. People put out all their unwanted items on the curb for the sanitation dept to pick up. That’s when I find my treasures. Garage sales are good too!

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