Thursday, April 25, 2013

Quick and Easy Upholstery!

BEFORE:                                                                              AFTER:

When I saw this idea from "Four Generations One Roof" on Pinterest I was excited because my rocking chair was waiting for just such a solution!  This is such a great idea to staple new fabric right over the old chair.  Why pull out millions of little staples and remove the old fabric?  You can basically skip the tedious and boring part of upholstery!  Yeah!


You can see Jessica's full tutorial here - I highly recommend checking it out!

So I have had this rocking chair from Pottery Barn for 10 years now and I was tired of the yellow slipcover it came with.  The chair is still in great shape so I figured I would have to get a new custom slipcover made, which can be pricey but I was not about to attempt sewing one myself.  When I came across this idea on Pinterest I was a little worried about ruining such a nice chair but figured it was worth a shot- if it didn't work out, I could still have a slipcover made.  I gotta say I am surprised by how good this turned out - especially since it only took a couple hours to do!  Total cost was just the price of the fabric (you need about 7 yards of 45" wide or 5 3/4 yards for the wider 54" rolls) - this fabric was on sale at Hancock Fabrics for about $80 (for 5 yards).


As the tutorial suggests I started by covering the front of the arms and the sides of the chair first.  I used a staple gun connected to an air compressor, that way the staples are very small and yet very sturdy.  I stapled right into the fabric and hoped it would catch some of the wood frame underneath - sometimes it didn't and I just pulled those staples out.  As you can see, it made a bit of an ugly "pucker" around the staples but I knew that would end up being covered with more fabric.


Next you fold your fabric along the edges for a nice finish (this covers up your ugly staples underneath).  The arm fabric gets stapled just under the rolled edge of the arm where you can't really see the staples.


Before stapling the back, I attached the fabric to the sides of the chair, then continued wrapping the back fabric all the way to the bottom of the chair where the staples are hidden.  I didn't take a ton of pictures of the process because it is already very well detailed and explained in the tutorial - sorry! :) 



 The Finished Product!  It ends up looking very much like a custom slipcover!
I cheated and just tucked some fabric around the seat cushion for now - I will have to resort to some sewing to get that part done (or I may just pay someone to do that so that it turns out nice!).  I figure one small cushion cover should be cheap to hire out?



Here you can see the small staples hidden under the roll of the arm (below is a more zoomed in view).  I also did staple the fabric in a "visible" area going down the side of the leg but I think it's still not too noticeable from the front - the staples really are so small.  I realized later I probably should have used fabric glue to hold down the areas that are more visible and staples for the areas that are hidden.  Next time!



For just the price of fabric and only 2 hours of my time - I am a happy girl (and ready to do it again, I already have my next subject! *UPDATE: to see how that turned out click here)


Now I can finally say the Nursery is done (too bad my baby is 9 months old now!).

*UPDATE: Click Here and Here to see more chairs I reupholstered using this same technique!

24 comments:

  1. I was looking around for upholstery repair in Arlington Heights IL. I might try this instead if I can find the time.

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    1. Go for it! It saved me aTON of money and surprised me by how easy it was! I'm still loving it very time I look at it and I can't believe I did it! You won't get that kind of happy satisfaction from a store!

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  2. THis came out great Amy! You put a big smile on my face this morning :)

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  3. I'm so excited to do this for my chair! So much so, send me your cushion, fabric and a zipper and I'll sew up a cover for it?

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    1. So sweet of you! I actually had a friend do it for me months ago- so it's done and it looks great!

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  4. Have you thought about using fabric glue to glue an upholstery rope or some other kind of edging to hide the staples, it could be a brilliant pop of color that goes with the rest of your adorable nursery (or other room if you choose to move it).

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    1. A great idea- and one I actually did on another chair. You can see that if you follow the link I provided at the end of this post. Thanks Tonya!

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  5. Both of your chairs look amazing! I have a couple I've been wanting to do and this gives me the courage to do it! LOVE it!

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  6. What are the paint colors in this room? I am LOVING this for my son's nursery

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    1. They are Benjamin Moore's "Newburyport Blue" and Glidden's "Scroll Beige".

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  7. Can't wait to try this new upholstery trick. I have made slip covers and restored chairs with new upholstery, what a time saver and certainly saves the orginial fabric. When tired of it, I can simply remove it!

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  8. What kind of stapler did you use? I have one but the staples don't stay in.

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  9. I used a pneumatic staple gun (it hooks up to an air compressor) so it is heavy duty!

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  10. Looks amazing Amy!!! Would love to try this. What type of material is best for this? I am a complete newbie at this.

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  11. Thanks! You definately want a fabric that is more heavy duty than a basic cotton. You just want it to have some weight to it. There are lots of options at a regular fabric store that would work!

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  12. Thanks Amy! I'll pop down to my local haberdashery and have a look :-)

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  13. I have reupholstered so many chairs, and a couple of recliners. WHERE WERE YOU???? I have treated myself to powertools. Omg. Sewing or building or upholstery?? Who cares abouta clean house and food on the table...bahahaha! Come on girls, make a trip to Harbor Freight. If for nothing but a staple, hose, and a pancake compressor. I want sawhorse for Christmas. Lord, help me. :)

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  14. I tried to click her detailed link and it was just a picture. Any way I could get the link to the actual page?

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    1. Thanks Lori- I fixed the link so it should be working now ;)

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  15. Wow that looks fabulous. I must try and reupholster my chair. :)

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  16. In looking to do some of this myself I hit up the old YouTube and watch a video of a professional doing an armchair. There is a really neat method of stapling so that the staples are hidden and would resolve the visable staples you had. Check it out https://youtu.be/pfSlBnCN0Wk. Basically you staple under the fabric and then fold it down over the staples.

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