How to Reupholster an Accent Chair

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An accent chair can be any chair that adds warmth and taste to your room. If you have a chair that's just sitting there and needs a little love, you can just reupholster it. Reupholstering is actually simple and can be economical, as well. As long as you are careful and have some free time, you can have a new accent chair to show off in no time.

Things You'll Need

  • Needle-nose pliers Box cutter Seam ripper Batting Upholstery fabric Measuring tape Welting cord Upholstery tacks Needles Cardboard stripping Chalk Fabric glue and glue gun
  • Gather your materials. The materials you will need include needle-nose pliers, box cutter and seam ripper, batting, upholstery fabric, measuring tape, welting cord, upholstery tacks and needles, cardboard stripping, chalk, and fabric glue or a glue gun. The amount of fabric will depend on the size of your accent chair. Make sure you measure your chair--width, height and length--before you buy fabric. Also, always buy extra fabric in case you make a bad cut or simply measure wrong.

  • Strip the old chair. Use your needle-nose pliers and take off the old material by pulling out the staples. Make sure you take it off carefully because this will be your template for your new fabric. Once you've taken the fabric off the chair, use your seam ripper or scissors to separate the fabric. Make sure you label the fabric with your chalk so you know where each piece goes. Take all the old staples and tacks off the frame of the chair to leave it clean and neat and ready for new staples.

  • Cut the new fabric to fit the accent chair. Lay your new fabric on the floor and the old fabric that you removed from the chair on top of it. Trace around the old fabric onto the new fabric and then cut out the shape and pieces from the new fabric.

  • Cover the chair with the new batting and fabric. Start with the back of the chair and work your way around. Staple the batting to your chair to hold it in place. If your accent chair has arms, lay the batting over the arms as well and staple it to the wooden frame to hold it in place. Fold the batting around the corners nice and taut. When going around the legs, make sure you frame the legs and fold the batting nice and neat. Lay your templates on the fabric and cut around them leaving plenty of extra seam space. Lay the fabric on the chair and pin in place, starting with the back and working your way around the chair.

  • Put the finishing touches on the chair. You can use welting cord if you want or you can make your edges smooth. Simply pull your fabric taut and staple the fabric to the frame. Start with the back, then the seat, making sure you frame the legs and pleat the fabric smoothly. The only staples that should be showing are the ones underneath the chair. If you want, you can create flaps around the bottom of the chair to hide the bottom or fold and staple the fabric neatly.

Tips & Warnings

  • It is highly recommended that you use fabric upholstery but you can use any economical type of fabric you choose. Since most accent chairs are used for decoration it really doesn't matter.

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