Reupholster a dining chair seat

With a young boy at home, our upholstered chair seats are stained or even worn out. Instead of calling a pro, we decided to reupholster them by ourselves. Although this job is time-consuming, it requires zero experience. Don't worry about making mistakes; you can correct them by prying out staple and starting over easily.

What do you need?
1. heavy duty stapler (similar as this, also could find in Jo-Ann)
2. fabric (home decor fabric here; beware of patterns, which need to be symmetrical and have a same orientation in all chairs)
3. Screwdriver and pliers - pull up staples

How long does it take?
It may take a little bit longer for the first chair. Once you figure out how to do it, it takes 30 minutes to get one chair done.

How much does it cost?
I spent $65 for 6 chairs including tools.


1. Unscrew the seat from the bottom of the chair. Each chair may have different structure, but the screws are either around the frame or on a hinge.  

2. Remove the existing upholstery. This is the most time-consuming step. Use a screwdriver and plier to pull up each staple. Leave the foam/cushion (the base layer of fabric on your seat).

3. Measure the size (width, length and depth) of the seat, and cut a piece of fabric. I would recommend to give yourself some extra fabric, which makes the next step easier.

4. Place the fabric wrong-side up on a table, and place the seat on it with the side you sit on against the wrong side of the fabric. Make sure you align the seat with the pattern of the fabric if it applies. 

5. Trim the fabric but leave enough all the way around to fold over the edge. Fold a flap of fabric along the straightest side and staple from the center to the corners. Finish all sides and tugger firmly to make sure the fabric is tight over the top of the seat. 

6. Return seats to the chair.

Optional: spray fabric stain protector - here!

what a difference it makes!