How To Cover Chair Seats

Changing chair seat covers are a great way of updating worn out or dated chairs. You can select a fabric that matches the style or décor of the room where the chairs are located. It does not take a lot of skill to change the cover of chair seats. This project requires only a few materials and tools. When the project is done, you will have your own custom made chair seat covers.

Materials for the project

  • Fabric
  • Fiberfill
  • Textile chalk
  • Upholstery ripping tool
  • Staple remover
  • Fabric scissors
  • Staple gun
  • Screwdriver
  • Old newspapers

Step-by step instructions

  • Prepare the work area. Layout some old newspapers on the table. This is to protect your work area as well as to make sure your fabric stays clean.
  • Remove the chair seat. Turn the chair upside down on the work table. You will need to figure out how to remove the actual chair seat from the chair frame. Some seats are screwed on while others are tacked. Unfasten the seat from the frame. Do this carefully so you don’t damage the chair frame.
  • Remove the old cover. Using an upholstery ripping tool, pry off the old chair seat cover. Use a staple remover to take out any staples. If necessary, take out the old fiberfill, which could be dirty and dusty from long use. Be careful when removing the chair seat cover so the wood frame does not incur any damage. Work starting from the outer edge moving towards the inner portion of the seat.
  • Add fiberfill to the chair seat. Fill the chair seat frame with fiberfill if necessary. Just place enough for a comfortable seat. Trim off any excess fiberfill.
  • Prepare the fabric. Place the fabric on top of the newspaper pattern side down. Turn over the seat with new fiberfill onto the fabric. Use a textile chalk to mark the four corners of the chair seat on the fabric. Allow for several inches of fabric flaps that you will fold over and staple onto the back of the frame. Remove the seat and cut the fabric according to size and with enough allowance.
  • Attach the fabric to the chair seat. Place the chair seat on top of the fabric. The front of the fabric should be facing down so the pattern will appear on top of the seat. Center the chair seat on the fabric. Fold the top flap over and use a staple gun to attach it to the frame. Start at the center of the top flap working outwards to the side. Stop 3 inches from the edge of each side. Do the same for the bottom flap. Make sure to pull the fabric so it is taut. Next, do the sides. Pull the flap of one side so it is taut before stapling it to the frame. Finish off with the flap on the other side. Always work from the center going to the outer edges. Watch out for wrinkling and bulging. Make sure to smooth these out.
  • Remove excess fabric. Should there be any extra fabric, cut it away with the scissors.

Note:  For the corners, you may need to fold over the corners before stapling them to make sure that the fabric is taut.

Update your chairs by changing the chair seat cover. This is an easy do-it-yourself project that does not take long to accomplish. In fact, the hardest part of this project may be choosing a fabric design you like.


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