Recovering Furniture: How to Reupholster 101

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Written By Eva Stock

I love gardening, building, making and fixing things. 





Reupholstering is often thought of as a difficult process to go through when it comes to recovering furniture. It’s much simpler to throw the family in the car and head off to a big box home store, where upon arrival you will find another new piece that will fit in perfectly with your existing décor.

Your old, outdated piece of furniture is off to the trash or the local thrift store, and you never give it another thought. As our world turns into a ‘greener’ place, it is becoming more common to try to restore your older furniture and give it new life with new fabric. Start your recycling with your favorite stuffed chair or ottoman.

Time to Strip It Down

Assess your dining room chair or piece of furniture. Does it have a cushion that is separate or is it all once piece? Begin by turning the chair over so you can see underneath and asses the structural damage, then remove the yards of fabric cover that hides the staples or stitching.

Begin by pulling out the bottom stitching until you have started to remove the existing fabric. Pull each piece of fabric off intact, and draw a detailed outline of how each piece went onto the chair. Keep any foam intact, as you will need it when you start to recover your piece. Reupholstering your own furniture is not as hard as you might think.

Once you have each piece of original fabric removed, you can measure and determine how much new fabric you will need for your ottoman. With detailed measurements, you can go into your local fabric store and purchase the right amount of material of your fabric choice.

Be sure to purchase extra yards of fabric, in case you make a mistake while recovering. There are many different wonderful classic fabrics that are useful for upholstery. Try to stay away from thin materials, as they will not hold up as well during daily furniture use.

For the purpose of reupholstering a piece of furniture, you must have a staple gun, extra fabric, access to a sewing machine, and some fabric glue. Using the old fabric as your pattern, cut each new piece from your upholstery fabrics.

Time to Get Remodelling

Take your new fabric selections and begin to staple each new piece in its proper place, stretching it as you do. Once you are satisfied with how your new material is placed, continue stapling and ensure it is placed securely on the piece of furniture.

Try your new skills out on an ottoman to start, working your way up to a chair when you feel more confident. As you learn to take apart a piece of furniture, you will find that most pieces are put together the same way.

The benefits of reusing your own furniture are vast. Not only can you create an entire new room simply by redoing your chair or sofa, you will save yourself the money that you would have spent on a new piece.

Coordinate your new stool and chair with a large area rug, some nice new throw pillows, and a couch blanket. For example, if you have redone your chair in a jacquard blue pattern, choose a nice contemporary beige area rug and accent your room in beiges and blues.

When choosing your own fabric for your furniture, the sky is the limit as to what you can do with your décor.

If you would like to watch a a video all about how to reupholster a couch then click right here on this link to learn how to DIY.

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