Tips to Reupholster a Chair

I’m so excited to introduce Lindsay from My Creative Days!  She is going to share this great tutorial on how to Reupholster a chair that she fell in love with.  Check out her blog below:

Lindsay from My Creative Days

Guest Post from My Creative Days

Do you believe in love at first sight? I absolutely do! This past weekend, I fell in love at the first sight of this AMAZING chair ! The wood…. the shape……. the red velvet… (okay, maybe not the red velvet). Hello, Mr. Chair. Where have you been all my life?

Reupholster a Wood Chair Seat

The drab part of the chair was definitely the red velvet seat. I knew that had to go immediately, but I also knew that was the only thing I had to change. Easy makeover (love those)!Tips for Reupholstering a Chair Seat

The velvet was stapled on the seat and then it was trimmed with a piece of the same fabric and some upholstery tacks. It was very easy to remove.

Refresh an old chair with a new fabric seat

Now, I was left with a small, flat, tired “cushion” inside the seat and ticking fabric on the bottom of the seat. I took the “cushion” off and added some real padding to the seat (I don’t have a picture of that, sorry. I used some striped fabric that I found on clearance at Wal-Mart for $1.50/yard! I cut the fabric about 4 inches longer on each side than the red velvet piece I took off (thank goodness I did because it gave me enough fabric for the trimming part you will see in a bit). I put the padding on and then stapled the striped fabric down around the parameter of the seat.

Staple Gun Fabric to the Wood Chair

I knew I would have to “cover” the staples somehow, but I did not want to add “trim” to it. I started playing with the excess fabric I had around the staples and was able to find a way to fold the fabric so it made its own “trim”!!

First I folded it in half (like pictured below).

How to reupholster a chair seat

Then, I folded it in half again. Viola – trim to cover the staples!

Folding Fabric for Upholstery Tacks

I reused the upholstery tacks (which I loved) to hold it all in place.

Reuse original upholstery tacks

I love the way this seat turned out. The upholstery tacks against the striped fabric is such a great fit.

Reupholstered Vintage Antique Chair

This chair and I were meant to find each other and live happily ever after.  Hopefully I have made you a “love at first sight” believer!


Thanks Lindsay!  I think your chair turned out beautiful.  I love the fabric you chose and the simplicity of the upholstery tacks!

What do you think of Lindsay’s chair Rehab?  Tell us in the comments.


  • Thanks so much Amanda!

  • Are you kidding, who wouldn’t love that chair? Well I do anyway. The shape, wood are awesome. Pretty smart figuring out how to fold the fabric to cover the staples, great, awesome job. The fabric used was very nice also.
    I have a well made club chair type I’d love to recover but am overwhelmed with where to start. I even bought the fabric to recover it last Spring. Think I have enuf, over 7 yards. of upholstery fabric. Where to start? I’ve almost started couple times then feel lost so put fabric away. You did such a great job on yours, wish you were close to give me a hand or at least boot me in butt and tell me to do it already. lol. Someday (maybe). If I could do as good a job as you did I’d sure be happy, your chair looks great, even tho your chair is altogether different kind of chair. Happy week

    • Jane Ellen, I totally understand! I found two swivel club chairs for $15 each at a thrift store a couple of years ago. Instead of reupholstering them I managed to whip up a couple of fitted slipcovers. It seemed less final and easier to fix if I messed things up. Plus, they are washable so when my kids get their dirty feet on them, I can clean them up easily.

  • looking good

  • nice post

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