Jessica's probably not the only one sitting on a piece of furniture that's ratty but otherwise... perfect! We know: you've held onto it for its lovely shape or rare design or sentimental value. Well, now you can make the surface beautiful, too.
Martha doesn't say anything about what kind of paint to use, but we suggest going green while you're in the rescue/recycling mode to begin with. Here's a local green paint source options for furniture, and a couple of online sources: