how to upholster a wooden chair seat

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A wooden chair is an essential piece of furniture in any household. Over time, the chair seat may become dented, scratched, or worn out. Reupholstering the chair seat is an excellent way to bring back its original look and make it more comfortable to sit on. In this article, we will guide you through a step-by-step process to upholster a wooden chair seat.

Tools and Materials

Before you begin, you will need a few tools and materials to complete the job:

  • Scissors
  • Staple gun
  • Upholstery fabric
  • Foam padding
  • Measuring tape
  • Screwdriver

Step-by-Step Process

Follow these steps to reupholster a wooden chair seat:

Step 1: Remove the old upholstery

Turn the chair upside-down and use a screwdriver to remove the seat from the chair frame. Remove the old upholstery and foam padding by pulling out the staples with a staple remover or pliers. If the foam padding is still in good condition, you can reuse it; otherwise, you will need to replace it with a new one.

Step 2: Measure and cut the foam padding

Measure the width and length of the chair seat and cut the foam padding to fit these dimensions. Use a serrated knife or electric carving knife to make clean cuts. The foam padding should be thick enough to provide a comfortable seating area. A thickness of 1 to 2 inches is ideal.

Step 3: Cut the upholstery fabric

Measure and cut the upholstery fabric, leaving an extra 3 inches on all sides to wrap around the seat. The extra fabric will be used to staple the fabric to the seat.

Step 4: Attach the foam padding

Center the foam padding on the chair seat and use spray adhesive to glue it in place. Wait for the adhesive to dry completely before proceeding to the next step.

Step 5: Attach the upholstery fabric

Place the upholstery fabric on a flat surface with the wrong side facing up. Center the chair seat upside-down on top of the fabric. Pull the fabric up and over the seat and staple it in place, starting at the center of each side and working outward towards the corners. Make sure to pull the fabric tightly to avoid wrinkles or sagging.

Step 6: Trim excess fabric and reattach the seat

Trim any excess fabric to avoid bulges and creases. Replace the seat on the chair frame, lining up the screw holes. Use a screwdriver to attach the seat screws to the frame.


Reupholstering a wooden chair seat is a fun and rewarding DIY project that can be done over the weekend. By following these simple steps and carefully selecting your tools and materials, your wooden chair can get a new life and make your home more comfortable and stylish. With a little bit of practice, you can become an expert in upholstery and transform any old furniture into a new treasure.


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