Project Create

the biography of a nonprofit

Archive for the tag “new orleans”

Saturday Activity – Be A Student In Our First Painting Class: New Orleans Style Architecture!!!

On December 8, from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm, Project Create is hosting its first painting class!!! I could not be more excited.

Here is the flyer for the class:

What a great (and cheap) gift idea for a loved one! The class will take place during the December OCH Holiday Arts Market, so make sure to check out the great vendors before and after the class.

To sign up, please email

Little Wings, Big Dreams: The Louisiana 22q/VCFS Support Network Fall Picnic

A few weeks ago, Project Create had the great honor and pleasure of providing an art project at the Louisiana 22q/VCFS Support Network Fall Picnic.

For those of you who do not know about the condition, it is (in very simple terms) a chromosomal disorder that affects both physical and mental behavior. Here is an excerpt from the International 22q Foundation:

The 22q11.2 deletion syndrome is caused by a missing section (microdeletion) of chromosome 22 which is present from the time a child is conceived. Present in 1 out of every 2,000-4,000 live births, in 1 in 68 children with congenital heart disease, and in 5 to 8 percent of children born with cleft palate, the 22q11.2 deletion is almost as common as Down syndrome, a widely recognized chromosomal disorder.

The symptoms of 22q vary widely, but there is one thing every child with 22q has in common: dreams of a bright future! So Project Create and the Louisiana 22q/VCFS Support Network teamed up to bring a group art project to the annual picnic.

The project is called Little Wings, Big Dreams. The children at the event created unique birds out of construction paper and attached them to a cypress tree cut out. The piece represents the individuality of the children and their dreams of flying free. The tree represents their parents and the Support Network, providing them the stability they need before setting off on their own. Here are the pictures from the event, with a how-to tutorial to recreate this project:

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The project was a great success and everyone had a great time making their birds. If you are interested in having Project Create provide an art project like this for a private event, please contact Jordan at

Also, stay tuned for a tutorial on how to recreate this project and please donate so that we can open our studio!!!

December 8 – Be A Student In Our First Painting Class: New Orleans Style Architecture!!!

On December 8, from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm, Project Create is hosting its first painting class!!! I could not be more excited.

Here is the flyer for the class:

What a great (and cheap) gift idea for a loved one! The class will take place during the December OCH Holiday Arts Market, so make sure to check out the great vendors before and after the class.

To sign up, please email

October Arts Council Art Market – Big Numbers for a Big Day!!!

This is a momentous post for two reasons:

First, this marks the 40th blog post for Project Create!!! I know 40 seems like an odd number to celebrate, but I am in a celebratory mood and our 40th post is 40 more than zero, which is where we would be if Project Create didn’t exist.

Secondly (and probably more importantly), I want to fill you all in on the great day we had on Saturday at the Arts Council Of New Orleans Arts Market. It was a cold and blustery New Orleans afternoon (I think maybe around 60 degrees), which is certainly not what I had anticipated the hot south to be like, but I am not complaining! Nevertheless, the New Orleans community braved the chill and the market was jam packed.

Project Create’s Children’s Painting Booth produced 62 paintings. Sixty Two!!! This. Is. Incredible. In one day, because of Project Create, there are 62 more artwork in the world. This brings our total up to 108 new artists!

Check out the photos from the event!

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Faubourg Delassize: A Night Out Against Crime

A few weeks ago, Project Create had the amazing opportunity to provide and participate in a community art project at the Faubourg Delassize neighborhood’s Night Out Against Crime. The event was put on by Jericho Road, a New Orleans housing initiative that helps provide affordable and energy-efficient housing opportunities.

I was contacted by one of Jericho Road’s community developers, Caitlyn, who was actually one of Project Create’s first painters at the OCH Art Market in September (check out her painting here)! She had remembered our company and reached out to me to provide art entertainment at the event. Talk about AWESOME!!!

The Night Out Against Crime was part of the nationwide effort to promote crime prevention and awareness. What a great event for PC to be a part of!

The Faubourg Delassize is a very close knit community in the Central City area of New Orleans, and there was an overwhelming level of participation and acceptance of Project Create’s group art project. We created a Wish Board using the Delassize community symbol. I had pre-cut the symbol out of reclaimed wood, and all of the materials cost less than $20 total. With over 30 participants, the group artwork was made for less than 75 cents per person!!!

The Wish Board represents the hopes and dreams of the community, with each participant writing down their dreams on a ribbon (we used surveyors flagging tape, so it would withstand the elements). We then tied the ribbons onto the board (attaching them to screws that were screwed around the border of the symbol). The ribbons were weaved in and out of each other and around the screw border, creating a fabric of dreams and wishes for the community. We installed the piece at the corner of Saratoge and Seventh Streets, on the fence surrounding the city owned, abandoned lot. That location was chosen to represent the community’s desire and ability to beautify their own neighborhood with their own hands.

Here are the pictures from the night!

It is for events like these that Project Create exists. People being creative just for fun. We had a great time that night, and look forward to participating in similar events. If you know have anything you would like Project Create to provide art entertainment for (including birthday parties!), please reach out to Jordan Frankel at Also, to keep free events like the Night Out Against Crime happening, please DONATE to Project Create!!!

Finally in the Big Leagues: Free Children’s Art Event at the Arts Council of New Orleans Arts Market

Well I can say with no small amount of pride that Project Create has made it big!!! We are now working in association with the Arts Council of New Orleans to provide an activity booth for kids at the Arts Market this weekend…as in the Arts Council actually contacted Project Create and hired us (enter screams and shouts of glee and merriment)!!!!!!!!!

So come on down tomorrow  (10/27) to Palmer Park (on the corner of Carrollton and Claiborne). We will be there from 10 till 3:30 with painting activities for your kids! And don’t worry, parents and adults can paint too (if you ask nicely…).

For more information click here.

Free Day of the Dead Masks: Latin Art at the OCH Art Market 10/13/12

This month, the OCH Art Market will be showcasing Latin art and artists…muy caliente! Make sure to come on down and see Project Create, where we will be hosting another free art project: Day of the Dead Masks! This is a great opportunity for art lovers, young and old, to express their creativity and explore the beauty of Latin Art.

The OCH Art Market is proud to be collaborating with the Roger Thayer Stone Center for Latin American Studies at Tulane to celebrate Hispanic culture on OC Haley Blvd. in staging the Latino Art themed OCH Art Market in awareness of National Hispanic Heritage Month. The OCH Art Market is held on the second Saturday of every month at 1618 O.C. Haley Blvd, right in the heart of Central City. This building, also home to the Zeitgeist Theatre, is a protected historic landmark and with its 18 foot ceilings is a tourist attraction in itself. The market seeks to provide a foothold for returning Central City and Dryades Street to its former glory as a thriving commercial district second only to Canal Street.

More information on this market can be found on the OCH website, or by contacting us at with any questions or comments. Find us on Facebook (Project Create, O.C.H. Art Market) or Twitter (@PrjCreate_Nola, @OCHArtMarket). Also check out the talk about town about OCH from the Gambit

Vote For Our Chair Reupholstering Project on Instructables!

Our tutorial was entered into the Cabot Woodcare contest, and we think that is pretty awesome! If you have a minute, please click on our link and vote for our project. You will see the link to vote in the top right of our page on Instructables.

You can either sign up as a new member (which is free and gives you all kinds of awesome DIY ideas) or you can log in via Facebook. Either way works for us!


Project Create Is Featured On Instructables! – Update 9/28/12

Update 9/28/12 – Our project received another fantastic complement from Instructables:

Congratulations Project Create!  “How To Reupholster A Chair” has been featured to the homepage!  Being featured by our editors means your Instructable stands out, and represents one of the best we have.  Projects like yours make Instructables great, and we really appreciate your time and effort.


If you haven’t already heard of this amazing website, Instructables is an online encyclopedia where passionate people share what they do and how they do it, and learn from and collaborate with others. What that means is that Instructables is an online derivation of Project Create (this is totally in my humbler opinion, and of course they get the credit for being invented first).

The point is, you can pretty much find any DIY project you can think of on their site (for free!) and teach yourself how to accomplish it. That is AWESOME.

Because Instructables is so great, I decided to upload Project Create’s post on Reupholstering a Chair so that more creative spirits could find their way to the tutorial. Let’s not forget, the whole point of Project Create is to encourage creative expression wherever we can, so we don’t really care if we get the credit…we just feel good knowing we helped someone find their creativity!

Well sometimes it does feel pretty dang good to be recognized…like we just were by the Instructables staff! Here is the email we received:

Hi Project Create!

Your Step by Step Instructable “How To Reupholster A Chair” was just featured by one of our editors!
Look for it in the Workshop category.

Being featured means we think you are awesome.  Keep up the great work!

WOWZA! This is a shining moment for Project Create and I just had to share it with you all. So you better all make sure to check us out in the Workshop section under “Featured“!!!!!!!!!!!

Art Project: Reupholster A Chair

There are so many good chairs out there that are just plain uncomfortable in their own skin. It is time that we liberate them and give them new life! This entry is not so much an art project as it is a creative endeavor. But this does not mean that it is a simple walk in the park. Having said that, I do want to reiterate that it is surprisingly easier to reupholster a chair than you would imagine.

There are plenty of websites our there that will give you instructions on how to DIY reupholster, and I encourage you to check them out. Here are a couple I looked at: All Things Thrifty and Modest Maven. These are great crafting websites you should explore for other great projects as well.

Here is a step by step outline of how Project Create went about reupholstering this club chair (the total cost for the project was $65, including the chair which was purchased for $25 at an estate sale):

reupholstering a chair

reupholstering a chair

reupholstering a chair

This is the chair in its original state. Awful. Seriously, this was truly offensive.

reupholstering a chair

When you are removing fabric and pieces, start any chair from the bottom first. Most chairs are finished on the bottom, so the best method is to remove fabric in the reverse order it was put on…this way the last pieces you will remove will be the first pieces you put back on. Here is a tip: If you bought the chair from a garage sale, buy some Lysol disinfectant and repeatedly spray the chair down while you take it apart. This will help with any odors as well.

reupholstering a chair

For this chair, I needed to remove the bottom frame to get to the fabric. I used a thin flat head screwdriver and a hammer to get between the frame and the chair, then I just pried it apart. Be careful with any nails or staples that are exposed…I recommend wearing work gloves.

reupholstering a chair

You can see all of the staples that were used – removing these is the most time consuming part of the project. You want to be careful removing the fabric so that you can reuse it as a template for the new fabric you choose. The best way to remove these is using any method that works for you…I used a pair of pliers and a thin flat head screwdriver. For full disclosure, after I removed the first few panels by manually extracting every staple, I decided to try pulling the fabric off in one piece. This worked to some extent, but be warned that the fabric may rip easily. This isn’t a huge problem in itself, so long as you can get the general pattern of each panel.

reupholstering a chair

You will want to save the piping that you remove, as it is already cut to be the perfect length for each section. Again, just keep on removing the staples and fabric.

reupholstering a chair

Make sure to label each section that you remove so that you know where they go when you are recovering. I made sure to label the section, the side it is on, and the direction it went back on.

reupholstering a chair

Ply-grip: Our worst enemy and our best friend. The sharp metal teeth you find on large sections such as the back and sides are called Ply-grip. You will want to be careful with these pieces because they are very sharp. The best way to open them is using a butter knife to pry it open (seen in the next picture). Because I wanted to keep costs as low as possible, I wanted to reuse the ply-grip, so I made sure not to bend everything out of place too badly. You can grip the fabric with your pliers and just pull it out of the ply-grip.

reupholstering a chair

Using a butter knife to open ply-grip. Yes, those gloves make me look creepy.

reupholstering a chair

Continue removing fabric panels until the frame of the chair is totally exposed. Be cognizant of where batting and foam pieces are – some of them need to be removed to get to where fabric was stapled in, and some (like in this picture) should be left along because there is nothing further to remove. Here is a tip: if you want your chair to be more comfortable, you can go ahead and add more batting or foam at this point. Also, if you got the chair from a garage sale, it might not smell the best, so you can remove the batting and replace with new, although this will increase the price of the project.

reupholstering a chair

This is a (not very good) picture of the back of the chair. I wanted to point out how it was attached to the frame: the manufacturer did not use ply grip here. Instead, the panel was apparently attached on the top edge first, with the two sides having the ply grip. This may make more sense later on, but it is important that you keep any foam backing or cardboard lining so that you can reuse them to keep your edges smooth.

reupholstering a chair

This chair had buttons in the upholstery that I think looked awful. This picture shows where they were attached in the back (the strings were stapled to the frame). I made sure to remove these, so that when I put on the new fabric, the batting would be nice and smooth.

reupholstering a chair

When you have the fabric completely removed, you can start cutting our the pattern in the new fabric. Here you can see I laid a piece of the old fabric (face down) on the back of the new fabric. This way, when I cut out the new fabric, it will be facing the correct way. If you are using a patterned fabric, be cognizant of where any images will be centered when you attach the fabric.

reupholstering a chair

After I cut out all of the new fabric, I began attaching. Remember, You will be replacing the fabric back on in the opposite order that you removed it. This bottom pieces was the last part that I removed, and thus the first to be replaced. All you need to do is put the cut fabric back on, tuck it back into the places it was tucked, and then re-staple it in the same places it was stapled before.

reupholstering a chair

You will attach the piping in the same reverse order that you removed it. This cannot be explained exactly without looking at the actual chair you are working on, so only you will understand the order it was attached. If you saved the original piping, you can use a seam ripper (or scissors) to open the piping and take out the cord. To make the new piping, cut our a 1.5-2 wide strip of your fabric in a length 2-3 inches longer than the cord. Then use a sewing machine to sew the piping. Here is a tutorial.

reupholstering a chair

Before you attach any woodwork, think about whether you want to paint or stain it. You will want to do any of this work before you attach any new fabric. I chose to spray paint the wood black for a modern look.

reupholstering a chair

Make sure to tuck in all of your panels and staple where appropriate – remember that you should never see staples exposed on the finish product.

reupholstering a chair

I didn’t take an image of when I made the cushion, so I used this one to show you what you need: a sewing machine. Using a basic pillow cover strategy, I just sewed a cover for the cushion that was already on the chair. This is another opportunity for you to add batting – but keep in mind that will change the size of the pillow cover. Here is a tutorial.

Well that pretty much sums up the basics for re-upholstering an old chair. There are going to be lots of roadblocks in your chairs, because every chair is different. Just remember to document the steps and order in which you remove parts, and you should be just fine. My chair took about 6 hours to complete, but yours may take longer. No matter how long it takes, be patient. Remember that at the end of the journey, you will have an amazing new chair for a fraction of the price!

Here is a before and after picture of my chair:

reupholstering a chair

So do you think you are up to the challenge? We would love to see your re-upholstered masterpieces, so make sure to post them in our comments section!

As always, don’t forget to spread the word about Project Create and help us raise enough money to open our studio where these materials and projects can be made permanently available!

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