Thursday, July 23, 2009

Reupholstered Chair Cushions

Sorry for the delay in getting these photos posted, my camera is having issues. (Which figures since this is the week I decided to launch a blog!) Anyway, here's a quick and not-so-precise tutorial of how I reupholstered my dining room chair cushions.

In case you've forgotten, here's a reminder of the chair and cushion before:

The cream color really didn't stand up well to two toddlers learning how to eat independently and only succeeding about 50% of the time. Plus I just didn't love it anymore. Since we rent our home, I have focused more on making changes to the things that are ours (furniture, etc.) to help make the space more of my style. Anyway.....back to the chairs.

1. Buy Fabric. Because I'm a DIY-newbie (and total, total fabric newbie) I literally unscrewed one of my stained cushions, threw it in my bag and took it to the Hobby Lobby with me to find a fabric. I probably looked ridiculous (I stopped worrying about that a long time ago!) but I found a fabric I liked (I knew I wanted a toile, I love me some toile) and asked the lady working to help me figure out how much I needed. It was SO NICE to bring the cushion, because they aren't exact squares (more on that later) so we were able to be very precise in the amount of fabric needed. I got it all for $10.00 (on sale).

2. Since I knew we had measured the fabric correctly at the store, I brought it home and cut it into 4 squares (for the 4 cushions). Then, since the cushions were already unscrewed from the chair, I just started wrapping the cushion. You should start with the two sides that are most parallel to each other, so in this case, I started with the top and bottom because they are most closely parallel when compared with the left and right sides.

3. You just pull snugly (but not too tight) and start using your staple gun to hold the fabric in place. The corners are a bit tricky, especially for my shape cushion. I just folded them as neatly as I could. I knew it would look pleated and not perfectly taut, but that didn't bother me. I knew once the chairs were screwed back in, it wouldn't be that noticeable and really it looks kind of neat and tailored that way. But what do I know? I also trimmed the excess fabric after the cushion was completely stapled.

4. Just make sure when you do subsequent cushions that your fabric is all facing the same way - if you are using a striped pattern or something else, you'll want to make sure you start each cushion on the same stripe (or maybe you don't need to, it's totally up to you)! That's another reason why I loved the toile for this project, because it has so many things going on in the fabric, that as long as it all faced the same direction (I did towards the chair) it looked similar enough to be cohesive, but different enough to add some interest and variety to the table.

5. Because this is real life and not a show room, I sprayed the new cushions with this amazing fabric protector I also got at the Hobby Lobby. It has to set for 24 hours, but it is like super Scotch Guard, and any liquid that lands on the chair now beads up and slides off. MAGIC!

And there is my definitely not precise and definitely not perfect way of reupholstering my dining room chairs! If you try this, please share your results!!!


  1. Your chairs look great. Could you tell me the name of that fabric protector? Thanks.

  2. Hey, Ann - I'm so sorry I thought I had responded to this before now! Anyway, the name of the Fabric Protector is called Force Field. So far it has held up really well! Thanks for visiting!

  3. Love this post. Didn't know about the fabric protector. Buying some today. Keep the posts coming...i'm new to this and need lots of help :)