How to Re-Upholster a Dining Room Chair
(Slip or Drop In Seat)
- upholstered seat dining chairs (the kind that drop in and screw to frame)
- ¾ yard fabric per (2) seat cushions (*See special Note on patterned fabrics)
- 1 yard Dacron per (2) seat cushions (approximate; see Note**)
- temporary fabric pen (chalk or pencil)
- 1 yard of 1” high density foam per (2) seat cushions (approximate; see Note**)
- 1 yard of black cambric per (2) seat cushions (Optional) (approximate; see Note**)
- Camie 303 Spray Adhesive
- tape measure
- staple gun (preferably electric or air powered)
- Upholstery staple remover or tack remover
*NOTE: if using a patterned fabric, be sure to allow extra fabric to match & center motifs on chairs. Pay special attention to the pattern repeat’s length and width when planning out your chairs.
**NOTE: Measure your seats’ length and width – mine were 14.5” x 15.5”. Our foam is 24” wide and 1 yard gave me some wiggle room while cutting out the shapes.
Step 1: Gather Supplies and Remove Seat Cushion
Select chairs and fabric. Using a screwdriver, remove the seat cushion from the chair frame. Using either the tack remover or the staple remover, remove all original fabric from cushion. Tip: When selecting the new fabric, choose one that coordinates with the decor of your dining room and think about durability. I used outdoor fabric on mine!
Step 2: Evaluate Cushion
If it is disintegrating, stained or looks sad & misshapen, replace it! Otherwise, go to the next step. Remove all of the cushion, including any lumps that have stuck to the chair base. Place the seat frame onto the foam and trace the shape onto the foam. Cut out the foam along the line drawn. Using Camie 303 Spray, lightly spray the bottom of the foam and attach to the seat frame. Trim, if necessary.
Step 3: Cut Dacron
Place seat frame with attached cushion face down on Dacron. Carefully cut Dacron about ½ inch larger than the cushion. Using Camie 303 Spray, lightly spray top of cushion and attach Dacron, ensuring it is centered on the foam cushion.
Step 4: Cut Fabric
Place seat frame face down on fabric. Trace three inches out from edge of cushion around entire frame. Cut along line. Tip: If using a patterned fabric, appropriately position the design on the seat cushion.
Step 5: Staple Fabric to Cushion Frame
Attach fabric to frame using staple gun. Begin by stapling fabric to frame at the center point of each side, and then at each corner, pulling fabric tautly around frame.
Step 6: Attach Fabric at Corners
After sides and corners are stapled in place, continue securing fabric to frame by working from center point to each corner. Pull fabric snugly around curved corners to eliminate tucks on top side of cushion. Trim excess fabric along outer edge of staple line.
Step 7: (Optional) Attach Black Cambric to Bottom
For a more professional look, staple black cambric to bottom of chair to cover edges of fabric.
Step 8: Reattach Seat Cushion to Chair Frame
After seat cushion is covered with new fabric & the black cambric is attached, reattach to chair frame using original hardware.