Chair Reupholstery

I’m super excited to share our next project with you, how to reupholster a chair! I’ve been wanting to do this since we moved in a couple of years ago but never got to it. Now I’m not sure why we waited so long because it was done in a couple of hours and makes a huge difference in our dining room.

Why we Reupholstered the Chairs…

As usual, I feel like the picture says everything. My MIL gave us this table and chairs when we moved in and I love the actual table, but the chairs were very outdated and very dirty.

chair before

I thought about buying a new table and chairs for a while but of course the ones I want are really expensive, so I decided the best thing to do was to change the fabric to match our decor and update the chairs.

Where to Buy the Materials…

We had most of the supplies already in our house. I bought the fabric ($20) at Joanne Fabrics and some fabric protecting spray ($15) from Amazon. You can use scotch guard too but I decided to go with this spray since it had good reviews. I tried it on a scrap piece and actually ran it under water and the water just slid right off! Pretty awesome spray if I may say so myself. Anyway, other materials you will need are a screwdriver, nail gun, hammer and possibly a drill.

Creating the Chairs…

Now is the fun part! We started with preparing the fabric. I ironed the fabric and then laid it in a box to spray it with the upholstery spray. We happened to have a giant box in our house because we just ordered a new hot tub cover so it worked out nicely! You could also spray the chairs once they are upholstered but I figured this would be easier.

Fabric in Box

Next we needed to figure out how to cut each piece. I wanted to buy one yard per two chairs but they only had 2 1/2 yards available so I took what I could get. It actually ended up being more than enough! Our chairs had been reupholstered before, so we looked under each chair and picked the one that looked the cleanest, with the least fabric hanging off and used that as a template. It turns out that our fabric was almost the perfect size for the six chairs, so we measured length wise and cut into three measured pieces and then cut the fabric in half. I just used a bronze sharpie to draw the lines because it was close to the fabric color but you really won’t see it anyway because it will be under the chair.


Line on the fabric

Now that the fabric was ready to go, it was time to do the chairs. Now we made a pretty big mistake when we did the first step. We unscrewed the seats from all of the chairs and put them on the table, not remembering what seat went with what chair. Because of this, we actually couldn’t find the chairs that matched the seats so we had to re-drill holes in the bottom of the chairs when we were done. So remember which chair goes with the seat when you do this!

Step 1: Unscrew the seat from the chair

upholstry in chair

Step 2: Remove the fabric, and place the new fabric evenly over the seat with the cushion in it.

fabric step 1

Step 3: Flip the chair over and pull the fabric up over the edge and staple with a staple gun.

Step 4: Repeat for each side of the chair, making sure the fabric is pulled tightly so there are no wrinkles on the cover. If the staples don’t go in all the way, hammer them down so they are tight.

hammer chair

Step 5: Cut the extra fabric off the top and now you have a upholstered chair seat!

finished chair bottom

Step 6: Screw the cushion back into the chair! If you didn’t spray it with fabric protector before, do it now. Viola! You have a new, upholstered chair.

finished chair

The chairs only took a couple of hours and now match our decor, They aren’t dirty and outdated with plaid flowers anymore. Just look at the difference!

chair before and after

Chair before and after

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