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how to upholster an old chair

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If you have an old chair that is still in good condition but looks a bit outdated or worn, reupholstering it can be a great way to give it new life. Upholstering a chair may seem like a daunting task, but with the right tools and a little know-how, it can be a satisfying DIY project. In this article, we will give you step-by-step instructions on how to upholster an old chair.

Tools Needed

Before starting, you will need to gather the necessary tools. You will need a staple gun, fabric scissors, pliers, an upholstery needle, and thread. You may also need a rubber mallet, a tack hammer, and a staple remover. Make sure you choose a fabric that is durable and appropriate for the chair's intended use.

Removing the Old Fabric

The first step is to remove the old fabric from the chair. Use pliers to pull out any old staples or tacks. Once the fabric is removed, examine the padding underneath. If the padding is in good condition, you can reuse it. If it is worn or damaged, replace it with new padding.

Measuring and Cutting the New Fabric

Once the old fabric and padding are removed, measure and cut the new fabric. Use the old fabric as a guide for cutting the new fabric. Leave enough fabric to wrap around the chair and staple it securely. Cut the fabric as straight as possible to ensure a neat finished product.

Upholstering the Chair

Now comes the actual upholstering. Start by laying the new fabric over the chair, making sure it is centered and straight. Begin by stapling the fabric in the center of each side, pulling it taut as you go. Work your way out from the center, alternating sides and stapling as you go. Use a rubber mallet to pound in any staples that are not flush with the surface of the chair.


Upholstering an old chair takes time and patience, but the end result is worth it. With the right tools and a little practice, you can give your old chairs a new lease on life. Don't be afraid to experiment with different fabrics and styles to create a one-of-a-kind piece. Remember to take your time and work carefully to ensure a professional-looking finished product.


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