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How to Reupholster a Dining Chair Seat

I am a Carer by day and am a blogger by night or whenever I am free. Love to write about languages, travel, gardening and anything really.

Here are the photos of my chairs before I covered it

The before photo of our dining chair seat

The before photo of our dining chair seat

The slight dent on the chair

The slight dent on the chair

How to Reupholster a Dining Chair Seat for the First Time

Two of our dining chair seat covers had a slight bashing or has a dent to it. We have been thinking of buying new ones to replace them but our dining table and chairs are fairly new. We just bought them a year ago I think. Our dining table and chairs are so comfortable that I don't want to replace them yet.

I suggested to my husband that I would like to have a go at reupholstering them which gave my husband quite a shock as I don't know much about D.I.Y jobs let alone reupholstering a chair seat. In fact, my husband is the one who is very good at any D.I.Y jobs in our home and I am the one who is good at gardening, tidying and cleaning up.

But before I will do it, I need a staple gun and some staples. My husband ordered a Staple gun and some staples from EBay and the next day it came. I started my D.I.Y job in no time. I was so excited in using the staple gun for the first time I can't wait to start my new hobby. Luckily, I got this piece of cloth that is quite bright yellow with pattern to it to use in covering the chair seats.


The Tools or Materials I used for Reupholstering the Chairs

The Things I used for reupholstering the chair seats are:

  • A piece of cloth or material to cover the chair seats
  • A staple gun - to use for stapling the cloth, easy to use
  • Staples - to staple the material or cloth
  • A screwdriver - to remove and put back the screws on the chair.
  • A plier - to remove the staples
  • A workbench - borrowed from my husband's work bench
  • A mobile phone - to take photos of my before and after photos of the chair seats
  • A pair of scissors - to cut the excess cloth or material
  • The chair seat or cushion.

Tools I used for Reupholstering the Chair Seat

The materials or tools I used staple gun with staples, plier, scissors, flat screw driver, the seat with new cover, and the work bench plus my cell phone.

The materials or tools I used staple gun with staples, plier, scissors, flat screw driver, the seat with new cover, and the work bench plus my cell phone.

The chairs before I covered them. The before photos

The chairs before I covered them. The before photos

How to Reupholster a Dining Chair Seat

To be honest, I was quite nervous about doing this but I thought to myself if I won't try then I will never know if I can or I can't. But to give me an idea, I went and look at google for a few ideas.

I saw a You Tube video on how to reupholster a chair seat and this woman did it so easily that it gave me an inspiration and some ideas on how to cover my dining room chairs. With that in mind, I got my husband to undo the seats from the chair so I could start reupholstering for the very first time. I suppose I could have done this myself too but I thought he is better at removing screws. I might cause more damage to the already dented chairs. Besides it won't hurt him to give me a helping hand with his D.I.Y skills. This is a challenge for me but I am good at facing real life challenges so here I go.

This is how I did the reupholstering: I gathered all the things I need first and put them down near the work bench where I am going to cover the seats. I did not have to remove the old cover as it is fairly new, it just got dented so I will just cover the seats with new piece of cloth of my choice.

  • I put the piece of cloth to cover the seat on top of the work bench upside down then I put the seat upside down on top of it.
  • I then try to measure(estimate) how much material I need to cover the seat. Then cut the excess material or cloth.
  • Next, I grab both cloth each side and make sure they are stretched enough, fold the piece of cloth, then I staple one side in the middle, then I do the same on the opposite side of the seat. Repeat this on the other two sides of the seat. Make sure there are no wrinkles on the upper part of the seat.
  • When I finished stapling the middle of each sides of the seat, I will now start stapling from the middle of the seat towards the corners of the seat but stopped before the corners making sure that the material is stretched and make sure that the staples are in straight lines to make a good finished look.
  • Here is the tricky bit, stapling the corners of the seat. I have to make a pleat on the corners to make a neat finish before I stapled it. I have to cut excess material or cloth to be able to fold the corners neatly. I find this the hardest bit of upholstering a chair seat. I wasted a few staples doing this.
  • Check that everything is fine before screwing it back to the chair. The last thing to do is screwing the seat back to the chair. And that is it, job done.

Step-by step Photos of Reupholstering a Chair Seat

The seat upside down with black cover underneath.

The seat upside down with black cover underneath.

Folding the cloth on one side before stapling it

Folding the cloth on one side before stapling it

Here is the hardest part stapling the corners, I had to cut some of the material so I could tuck them in neatly.

Here is the hardest part stapling the corners, I had to cut some of the material so I could tuck them in neatly.

Here is the finished product, I mean covered seat upside down. It is not perfect but it will do for now.

Here is the finished product, I mean covered seat upside down. It is not perfect but it will do for now.

Here is the seat on the right side up. It has got a little crease but never mind.

Here is the seat on the right side up. It has got a little crease but never mind.

Here is the finished look. My new look dining room chairs. Not bad for a novice D.I.Y job.

Here is the finished look. My new look dining room chairs. Not bad for a novice D.I.Y job.

Reupholstering a Dining Chair Seat

Now that I have done it, I know that reupholstering a dining chair seat can be done by a novice like me with a little help from my husband and You Tube. I enjoyed covering the chair seats more than I have imagined. It was challenging especially folding the cloth on the corners but it was okay in the end. It was like wrapping a parcel with a tricky corner but it is doable. And I enjoyed using a staple gun for the first time, too. Thanks to Google I was able to get some ideas and also You Tube videos are very useful.

Reupholstering a Dining Chair Seat

How to Reupholster a Chair

Staple Gun Used for Reupholstering a Chair Seat

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2015 Linda Bryen

Recovering a worn out chair seat

Linda Bryen (author) from United Kingdom on September 24, 2019:

Thank you Cynthia for your lovely comment. It does feel good doing some recycling by covering my old chair.

Cynthia Zirkwitz from Vancouver Island, Canada on September 23, 2019:

Your chairs look lovely! I have some chairs that need recovering and i have never felt confident enough. You have inspired me!

Linda Bryen (author) from United Kingdom on March 15, 2015:

Thank you PegCole17 for your kind comment and for visiting my hub.

Peg Cole from Northeast of Dallas, Texas on March 15, 2015:

These look really great after all your work. I love the fabric that you've used to replace the worn material.

Linda Bryen (author) from United Kingdom on March 07, 2015:

Thank you Peachpurple for your kind comment.

peachy from Home Sweet Home on March 07, 2015:

clever idea, thaen old chairs can become new again

Linda Bryen (author) from United Kingdom on March 06, 2015:

Hi! CrisSp, thank you for your kind comment too, I was inspired by what I saw on You Tube that's what I followed and it worked. We all try and save if we can. You are like me then you like ice cream.

Linda Bryen (author) from United Kingdom on March 06, 2015:

Hi! Maureen, how are you? Hope you are okay. Thank you for your kind comment again, it was one of those frugal mood days when I did it. I surprised myself that I can actually do this if I apply myself to it.

CrisSp from Sky Is The Limit Adventure on March 06, 2015:

Love DIY stuff...we also re-upholstered our dining chairs last Spring. It's fun and easy really. We saved a lot of money by just buying the material considering, the cost of labor (costly here in Canada) and then we treated ourselves to the ice cream house in town. :)

Good, useful hub.

travmaj from australia on March 06, 2015:

Linda - you never cease to surprise me, you've done a splendid job on the chairs. They look lovely. I'm so impressed. What's next I wonder? All best wishes, hope you are warming up in UK after the winter.

Linda Bryen (author) from United Kingdom on March 06, 2015:

Hi! Bill, I come and do your chairs for you. I missed this.

Linda Bryen (author) from United Kingdom on March 06, 2015:

Thank you MarloByDesign for your kind comment and rating. I like to try new things and this is what I came up with.

Linda Bryen (author) from United Kingdom on March 06, 2015:

Thank you so much Bill for your kind comment, I think the finished D.I.Y is not bad.

MarloByDesign from United States on March 05, 2015:

I rated your Hub 'Useful'. Nice tips! I have done this myself before and found that using outdoor fabric (slightly waterproof) seems to help against spills. I use this type of fabric for indoor furniture, like chairs. Thanks again.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on March 05, 2015:

Very useful article, my friend, and I have three chairs that need attention. Thank you!

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