Which Would You Choose?

I have come to the decision that rather than buying some chairs,

I will have my Ethan Allen Martha Washington chairs

that I purchased at an estate sale recovered.

My dilemma ….. Do I go super neutral or do I chose a pattern?

These are the chairs that will be recovered:

Dining Room Sitting Area - Housepitality Designs

The chairs are currently in the dining room sitting area,

however, that does not mean that they will remain there.

I have moved one of the  chairs to a corner of the room

so that you can see the choices a bit better.

The chair as it is now:

Dining Room Sitting Area - Housepitality Designs

Here is it with some pattern and color. Love that buffalo check.

The same check that is in my Master Bath (click on “master bath” if you missed this post).

Dining Room Chair - Housepitality Designs

I know the appearance of the examples of pattern/color vs. totally neutral is a bit unflattering

with the folds and wrinkles, but I hope you can get the idea.

Dining Room Chair - Housepitality Designs

Now, this is not to say that these are the patterns/colors that I will choose for the chairs.

Just trying to make a decision on fabrics. Go with pattern and color or totally neutral.

So what would you choose? Would love to hear your opinion.

In the meantime, I have many, many projects on my plate.

From my sweetie’s total room (which is practically empty now) re-do,

to the media room, in which two chairs were removed and given to my son.

Stay tuned next week for my DIY porch project!

Have a wonderful weekend! I will be watching our Boys of Summer!

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  1. Oh that’s a tough one. I think accent chairs like these look good with a pattern, but of course if you move them frequently then they need to work in each new space.
    Kim’s recent post…We’re Doing What??!!My Profile

  2. Teresa Emrich says

    I like the neutral (cream or ecru, not white). You will be able to change the appearance with a throw or any of many beautifully designed pillows.

  3. I’d totally choose the 2nd one. It is so classic with that chair!
    Anne’s recent post…Dream Dining Room – the Reveal!My Profile

  4. Amy Kaminski says

    I love the textured neutral. If it were flat without texture I don’t think it would do much for the chair, but with the texture it looks classic. And you can add color any time you want by switching up the pillows.

  5. I would choose neutral fabric. You can change out pillows and placement in other rooms so much easier. If you find “just the place” the chairs would stay I think you can coordinate a pattern that would look great…

  6. I love your chairs Shirley, they are perfect for extra seating in the dining room! I would choose a small pattern or stripe coordinating with the colors in the room because it is a dining area. Your home is beautiful and classic!

  7. The buffalo check in your master bather is awesome (great idea, there!), but I think it might be overwhelming on chairs.If you choose neutral, you can put the chairs anywhere in your house and tie them into room decor with different pillows. If you decide to go neutral, you might want to Scotchguard them to help keep them looking their best.

  8. I don’t think you can wrong with either one, and I do love color and pattern, but,…I think my preference here is the neutral. Maybe you could use the neutral and trim it out with some colored piping to go with your room. I have a chair covered in a patterned neutral in my family room and it is piped in red. Just a thought, you have such beautiful taste you will know what to do!

  9. Jonelleb says

    Love both but my preference for the long term is neutral.

  10. Shirley, I absolutely love the buffalo check. I like for accent chairs to have pattern, and larger pieces of furniture more neutral fabrics with patterned pillows tying everything together. I know that whatever look you go with it will be pretty. I can’t wait to see your new diy projects.
    Shannon@Belle Bleu Interiors’s recent post…SIMPLE SUMMER TABLESCAPEMy Profile

  11. Rebecca m says

    Hi Shirley! I’m voting for neutral! They can be moved anywhere and with accent pillow, dressed up!

  12. Sherry myers says

    I have complete confidence in your ability to make just the right choice. I understand though. I have been there. Neutral with a nice texture is so easy to coordinate with items you love. Soft colors are always inviting and relaxing and easy to work with too. There’s always safety with choosing a neutral. And by the way, those chairs are beautiful just like the rest of your home. Have fun deciding. We will wait to see the make over. Have a great weekend!

  13. As much as I love buffalo checks, I vote neutral so you can change the look with pillows and accessories, I know how you love the change things up all the time Shirley!
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  14. I like the buffalo check but to me it would be restricting, meaning it wouldn’t “go” in every space,IMHO! I think I would go neutral so it will be versatile. But have some texture to the neutral fabric. Anxious to see all your new projects. Where are you off to this weekend with THE BOYS:):)
    Pinky at designs by pinky’s recent post…A Summer Table with ShellsMy Profile

  15. I love mixing patterns in a house, so even though you might move the chairs around your house, you have the same colors in most rooms. So I vote for pattern!
    Penny at The Comforts of Home’s recent post…When Life Hands You BasilMy Profile

  16. Beautiful chairs! I vote neutral, either textured, or maybe a very neutral pattern, like the tan/beige and cream buffalo check in your window treatment or small beige/cream check or stripe. That way would coordinate with your other colors, add a blue throw or blue check pillow at will, and if you change your colors ever, the chairs still work. Just my opinions….

  17. Hi, Shirley,
    I also agree that a neutral textured ecru fabric would be a good choice for your chairs. You would not be limited in your placement of the chairs around the house and there are accent choices you can make to “change them up a bit” with pillows or throws. BTW, I love those chairs: so classic and lovely. I have no doubt, with your good eye and taste, that whatever you decide will make a beautiful addition to your home! Rosie @ The Magic Hutch
    Rosie M.’s recent post…Happy Memorial Day!My Profile

  18. Donnamae says

    Well…I think I’m in the minority here…but, I prefer the buffalo check. It’s classic…your classic! And I think that shade of blue is a neutral. Perhaps, you could always do a more neutral buffalo check? The off white is beautiful….don’t get me wrong. And has lots of texture. Good luck…and have fun! ;).

  19. Christine Kennedy says

    Definitely choose a pattern! Everyone has become so careful and neutral that the blogs are getting boring. Don’t be afraid of color and pattern.

  20. Neutral – love the soft textured tone on tone against the wood. The chairs are lovely and could really handle any pattern, but I would choose the neutral.
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  21. I wholeheartedly cast my vote for pattern. You could do a pattern in “neutral” colors. In fact, how about a paisley in brown/beige tones?
    Beverly’s recent post…Fern On BrickMy Profile

  22. Sharon Avinger says

    My vote is a subtle pattern, perhaps with texture since they are accent chairs. Nothing too big or too colorful. You will still be able to use colorful pillows and throws.

  23. I love the Buffalo checks, however, you move your furniture so much that the neutral would go anywhere in your home. That way you can change with different pillows. But, I sure love the Buffalo Checks…..

    Looking forward to seeing what your doing to your little sweetie’s room.

    Have a great cool weekend. Our weather is perfect, but the predictions are HOT HOT for the end of the month in the 100’s. So need to get everything done before then and only go out early in the morning or at dark, or I will be sick again.


  24. I know that either one you choose will be beautiful. I can see the pros of both. A neutral has a lot of versatility; but, a pattern can make quite a statement. The chairs are beautiful!

  25. love the buffalo check fabric, but I think the neutral has so much more potential.

  26. Shirley, as much as you like to change things up, I vote neutral. You are so great with using various colors and textures of pillows and throws, that would give you so many ways and places to use the chairs. But, you have to go with your ideas, which never seem to fail you!

  27. beyondbeige says

    Put buffalo check on the back and neutral on the front.

  28. I have never met a buffalo check I didn’t like,however the style of your chairs would be very pretty with a tone on tone neutral,like a matalesse.

  29. I think either would look lovely, but would probably opt for the neutral so that you can change out pillows and have lots of room for variety as seasons change! Either will be wonderful though!

  30. I actually like the chairs just the way they are!!

  31. Hi, Shirley!!! I’ve so missed you:) I’m so excited that your doing your chairs! Hmm…I am a fan for the neutrals, but I have to honestly say that you do such a wonderful job of mixing fabrics- that if you do choose a pattern, it’s gonna look fabulous anyway! Hope your having fun with your granddaughters room:)
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  32. I love the buffalo check but I would go neutral because you can add buffalo check accents. That way you can move the chairs and accessorize in any color.
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  33. Either would pretty. How often will you move and where is the question. I do like them in Buffalo check just saying


  34. Hi Shirley! I’m usually commenting on FB or IG but I wanted to pop in here and add my two cents…I adore the buffalo check it is so perfect with all of the other blue and white in your space and really…can you ever go wrong with buffalo check?! ?

  35. Neutral❤️

  36. Shirley, I just read Cathy’s comment and I totally agree, buffalo check is classic and timeless. I know you will follow your heart!
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  37. Which ever way you decide Shirley these chairs will be beautiful. I am leaning toward the solid so you can move these chairs more freely around the house. The pattern is so pretty too. Sorry I am not help. I just know they will look beautiful.
    Good luck with your decision.
    Kris @ Junk Chic Cottage’s recent post…Up Date on Kitchen!!!!My Profile

  38. Since you have so many beautiful pillows to change out seasonally, I’d go with something more neutral…not necessarily stark white. Especially if you’ll be moving the chairs around from time to time. Anxious to see what you decide.
    Mary Alice
    Mary Alice Patterson’s recent post…Simple Summer MantelMy Profile

  39. Sandra Fischer says

    In my humble opinion the large blue and white check is off scale with the fragility of the Martha chair …just a tad too bold… I did however have a Martha chair years back and had it reapolstered in a lovely ecru matlesse fabric …it looked rich and elegant

  40. You see I love both, but I have some floral French style chairs in our living room.
    They are wonderful and yet they drive me crazy because I would now prefer them to be neutral and add an accent pillow.
    So, my vote is ecru!
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  41. Oh my goodness Shirley. I love love love these chairs. Here’s what I would do… go neutral and make a big pillow cover in the buffalo check. Best of both worlds. And you can change up the pillow to fit any decor. OR… have slipcovers made for the chairs so they can be changed too.
    Yvonne @ StoneGable’s recent post…5 WAYS TO BEAUTIFULLY ACCESSORIZE A ROOMMy Profile

  42. love this idea, Shirley.

  43. I like the second one, the solid color. I’m sure that whatever decision you make, it’ll look absolutely fabulous…
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  44. Hi Shirley, I vote for a neutral fabric with texture so you can move your chairs around! It would also make accessorizing and adding pillows a breeze too 🙂
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  45. I purchased two Ethan Allen Martha Washington chairs at a moving sale, too. They are worth reupholstering. I did mine in a subtle two tone neutral and they are beautiful! The fabric was Robert Allen Gaudette. It has beautiful color and texture variation. It is costly to have the work done so I chose a neutral for mine. I can send photos of them if you would like.

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