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DIY: How to Reupholster Your Sofa

April 16, 2014

Reupholstered Sofa

If you’ve heard of the word “upholstery” or “upholster”, it may seem like a foreign word. It’s not really used in normal every day conversations, but basically, the word means to provide furniture like chairs and sofas covered in fabric and stuffed with polyurethane foam.

In the event that your furniture is already a bit worn out and old, it’s time to have it reupholstered. Doing this can prolong the life of your couch or sofa for a couple more years. But going to an upholstery shop for furniture repair can be a bit heavy on the pocket.

So why not do it yourself? Today, we’ll show you how to reupholster your sofa in 6 easy steps. Keep reading, fellow furniture friends!

Step 1: Prepare the necessary equipment:

  • Hammer
  • Pliers
  • A flat butter knife
  • Staple gun
  • Staples
  • Upholstery fabric (the amount of which we’ll explore in a bit)
  • Upholstery thread
  • Scissors

Step 2: Measure the dimensions

Measure the sizes of the seat and pillow cushions and the entire couch while you’re at it. This is so you can buy right amount of fabric. Get 10% more so there’s leeway for error. To know how much to buy, just simply multiply the length, width, and height of the couch/sofa. Show the dimensions to your fabric provider for easier reference. Also, keep in mind to buy stain-resistant material.

Sofa Reupholstery

Step 3: Carefully take out the old fabric

Cut along the corners and edges of your couch/sofa carefully. The caution is necessary because you still have some use for the old material later on, and also because you have to avoid cutting into the padding/foam underneath. If the padding underneath is still good, you can cover over it. If not, then you need to buy new foam and replace it.

If the old fabric is held in place with staples, use the flat butter knife to loosen them and then take them out with the pliers.

Step 4: Create new cut outs with the old fabric

After you’ve carefully cut out the old material, place it on top of the sheet of new fabric. Trace the outline of the old fabric and then cut them out. Make sure you leave an allowance of around 1 inch for the seams.

Step 5: Staple the new fabric to the frame

Once you have the new cut outs ready, spread the new fabric over the frame of the couch with a staple gun. Be sure the new staples are also located where the old ones were so they aren’t visible outside.

Step 6: Make new covers for the cushions

Finally, create new covers for the couch cushions (seat and pillow) using the same process in Step 2. Placing a zipper outside the cushion will allow you to take the fabric out and wash it. Use cold water, as it won’t fade the material as much.

If you’ve followed these 6 easy steps, then you can now enjoy your newly reupholstered couch/sofa. If you have any comments or suggestions, sound off in the comments section below!