Reupholstering Furniture is a great way to give a piece a fresh, new look or to revive something that is falling apart.
Total Project Time: 1 hours
Having a cat is one of my greatest joys in life. She is cuddly and cute and has very sharp claws. And, of course, she wants to sharpen those claws to be even sharper. From watching her, leather-like fabrics seem to be her favorite thing to scratch. Unfortunately, I had a few pieces of furniture that match that description.
The latest victim was my piano bench. Her love for this item was much more than I anticipated. I didn’t expect to see fluff coming out of the edges of the bench but here we are. The piano bench is still functional even though it doesn’t look the best. So, I decided why not try my hand and reupholstering it and give it a new lease on life.
One of the biggest considerations for this piece was what fabric I would use to reupholster it. First and foremost, I wanted a fabric that my cat wouldn’t care too much about. Then, I wanted to figure out what design aesthetic I was going for.
Something simple would be the easiest choice but something fun and flashy could make a great accent piece! It’s hard to go wrong here.
Here’s a list of the materials needed for this project:
- Furniture to be Reupholstered
- Thread matching the fabric color
- Staple Gun and Staples
- Hot Glue Gun (Optional)
Creating a Pattern
To ensure that the fabric was the proper shape of the furniture, I did this process and little bit backwards to how I would normally do it. I laid down the fabric, so the inverse side was facing out as I wrapped it around the bench seat.
Using pins, I held the fabric in place to give me the shape of the furniture. This helps give a shape to the project that will fit the piece perfectly. I didn’t use any extra cushioning but make sure to include that in this step if you plan on adding more padding to the project.
With the pins in place, it’s time to sew the piece.
The pins in the fabric should give a good template of where dewing is needed. I didn’t trim off any excess fabric at this point because I wanted to make sure everything was in the right place. This is a piece I did consider not cutting at all.
I like sewing using a similar color thread to the fabric because I helps hid the stitches in the project. Especially if something decides to give a little when fitting the fabric back onto the pieces. You can edge the fabric here or fold it into place in the next step. Either will work well.
I choose to sew only around one side of the base of the furniture. If both sides of the base were sewn, this project would be hard to maneuver as it doesn’t have any elastic in it. I would recommend this method when using a non-stretch fabric. The other side will be held down by the next step.
Securing the Fabric to the Furniture
The last step of this project is securing the fabric to furniture while it’s facing the right way. At this point, I was able to see if I needed to trim away any pieces of fabric or if the extra padding was more desired. At this point, the fabric should be held tightly around the piece except for one end that will be looser.
I secured the non-loose end first because it was already fitted to the base. I used a hot glue gun to fold over the fabric, hid the seam, and secure the exterior fabric to the piece. You don’t need to use glue; you can also just start with the staple gun if that’s preferred. I like using both because I’m obsessive.
Then I made my way around the fabric using a combination of hot glue and staples to keep the fabric in place. Now all that was left to do was securing the seat back to the legs of the bench. And voila! It’s like a whole new piece of furniture!
This process seemed to be a little daunting before I started but it was a much simpler process than I had imagined. And the results look amazing! This process was quick, easy, and a really great way to bring a piece of furniture back to life. I decided not to remove the cover and do a full replacement because it wasn’t necessary for this project, but I could see myself doing that in the future for revitalizing some of the other pieces I have.
Why use a staple gun?
A staple gun is a classic tool when upholstering furniture. Staples provide a sturdiness to the fabric in a way that will not tear the project when given enough room to move. Due to this, you will see staples on most pieces of furniture. It’s an all-around useful tool!
- Furniture to Reupholster
- Fabric any color
- Thread matching fabric color
- Staple Gun and Staples
- Hot Glue Gun and Glue optional
- Isolate the piece of furniture that is going to be reupholstered. If this is a larger piece, break down the furniture into small pieces.
- Wrap the fabric, wrong side facing out, around the piece and using pins to hold the fabric together and mark how the piece should be sewn.
- Remove fabric from the piece and sew in the designated areas.
- Trim fabric as desired and wrap the fabric, right side facing out, around the piece. Leave excess fabric along the bottom.
- Using a hot glue gun, fold over the fabric to hide the edges and keep in place. This step is optional.
- Secure with a staple gun. If the last step was foregone, make sure to fold the fabric to hide the edges in this step.
- Put furniture back together as desired.