How To Reupholster A Chair: An In-Depth Guide

What is reupholstery? Reupholstering refers to the process of replacing worn-out furniture with new fabric and new padding. This is an excellent way to give your chairs or other furniture a new life without spending excess money. All you need to reupholster a chair is to take three easy steps: find and measure fabric, cut, and sew it. Below you can find more information with proven steps about how to reupholster a chair.

How To Reupholster A Chair

How To Reupholster A Chair: Step-By-Step Guide

In this guide, you’ll find easy steps with tips that will help you to upgrade your furniture with no fuss.

Remove The Seat

The first thing you want to do when reupholstering a chair is to remove the seat. First, remove the screws holding the seat in place and then take out the staples using a flathead screwdriver or needle-nose pliers. Finally, tilt the chair over onto its front while supporting it with your other hand to let it rest on its legs. 

Remove any staples from where the seat was attached to the support struts at its back, and then carry it to a work area where you can turn it right side up again once you have removed all of its parts.

Remove Old Fabric & Padding 

Use a putty knife to gently scrape off any old glue from the frame and tear off any fabric attached to the chair or its frame. Tearing will make it easier for you to pull adhesive from staples at your leisure without ruining your design or pattern placement by ripping instead of cutting them later on.

First, for foam chairs, you will need to protect the seat from scratches by wrapping it with a pillowcase or plastic bag. Then, you can use an iron to press a few staples along the inside edges of the fabric or foam padding. Next, remove any staples from where it was attached to the support struts at its back and then carry it to a work area where you can turn it right side up again once you have removed all of its parts.

Center Your Pattern & Cut The New Seat Cover

After your fabric is removed, take the time to center your pattern on the seat to move around when you begin cutting. You can use weights to hold it in place or put masking tape along the edges of it.

Place a piece of painter’s tape across the top edge of your pattern to act as a cutting guide if you don’t have a straightedge, and then mark a vertical line at both ends and one more halfway between them for symmetry’s sake.

Attach The Fabric To The Seat

If the fabric is loose, attach it to the seat of your chair with a spray adhesive, which will cause it to stick to the seat for at least 30 minutes. This is also an excellent way to attach lightweight upholstery, such as silk or gabardine, without any wrinkles. Apply spray adhesive generously, and then press your fabric smooth while pulling from underneath in all directions and smoothing out all wrinkles until you are content with how it looks.

Complete The Corners

If your pattern has rounded corners, you will need to trim excess fabric from the corners. Make this easier; trace around a drinking glass or jar with chalk and cut along those lines.

Reattach The Seat

After you have reupholstered the seat, replace all of its parts by screwing them into place and then put the chair back into its normal position so that it doesn’t get scratched during the next few steps. 

How To Reupholster A Chair Seat With Foam

This is a guide that will help you reupholster a chair seat with the use of foam. The process of reupholstering a chair seat is not very difficult, but there are some things that must be done correctly to make sure it turns out well.

  1. First, take your old chair and remove the fabric. 
  2. Sand down the frame and give it an overall clean with soap and water to remove any stains or dirt before beginning to install your new foam.
  3. Install the foam padding. Measure out the exact amount of foam needed and cut each piece with a knife or box cutter. 
  4. Place one piece of foam on the chair and then start stapling it down. 
  5. Put the fabric back onto the seat. Simply pull the fabric over each side of the seat pad and do a tack stitch over all of the main staples to keep it in place, and then be sure and do another tack stitch every few inches to secure it well.


Can I Reupholster A Chair Myself?

Yes, it is possible to reupholster a chair without having any experience and in as little as a day. The key is to take your time selecting the fabric and making sure that you have the correct supplies. Once you are ready to begin, it takes about three steps: measure, cut the material, and sew.

Is It Difficult To Reupholster A Chair?

Yes, it’s often challenging to reupholster a chair. A number of factors can contribute to the difficulty of reupholstering a chair, such as size and shape, whether it is upholstered in fabric or leather, and how complex the design. But you can do it even with no experience.

Can I Reupholster Over Existing Fabric?

Yes, you can reupholster over existing fabric. Reupholstering will follow the same steps: choose a chair cushion and replace it with the new material. Reupholstering can be time-consuming, but if done correctly and carefully, it is a great way to give your old furniture new life without spending thousands of dollars on an entirely new piece.