How to Reupholster a Chair Seat

Last summer I purchased a set of 6 dining room chairs at a farm auction for just $35. I loved the rich, antique wood but the stained, ripped red velvet fabric had to go.

Reupholstering a seat is an easy way to update or refresh your chairs. You will need:
• Screwdriver
• Staple Gun & Staples
• Scissors
• Foam Chair Pad
• Upholstery Fabric
• Batting (optional)
• Wood Stain Marker (optional)

First, flip the chair over and unscrew the seat base. Underneath the old fabric you will find a chair pad. Depending on it’s condition, or if you would like to add more padding, you may wish to replace the pad with a thicker one purchased at a craft store. In my case, I decided to reuse the old pad and add two layers of batting. Cut up old blankets could also be used for batting.
Place the chair pad and seat base onto your batting. Cut around the seat base leaving 3-4” of batting around all sides. Staple the batting onto the seat base, pulling the sides tight as you go to eliminate bunching. Be careful not to staple the batting over the screw holes. If you are not using batting, you can skip this step.
For adding the upholstery fabric, follow the same steps as above. 
Once stapled to the seat base, trim off the excess fabric.
Use a wood stain marker to touch up the scrapes and nicks in the wood. Screw the seat base back onto the chair frame. Now you have a beautiful “new” chair!
Let’s look at the Before/After shot:


Twila said…
I like the new fabric you chose!

Kelly K. said…
Thank you! I took all of the paint swatches from my surrounding rooms into the fabric store and found a wild fabric to match. I wanted something busy to hide and possible stains.
JMay said…
Very cool, good job :-)
Hollie said…
I've always wanted to reupholster a chair but it seems so intimidating!
Kelly K. said…
Hollie - hopefully my post makes it a little less intimidating for you :) It's not a hard job at all. Just a little time consuming - but so worth it! And, once the chairs are done, it's so satisfying to tell people, "Yeah, I did that - all by myself!"
Beatriz said…
Wow, this came out so great!! I am actually reupholstering 2 antique chairs right now. I can't wait till it's all done!

I'm having a giveaway! Come check it out :)
Kelly K. said…
Bea - I can't wait to see how your chairs turn out!

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