Upholstering Chair: Part 5

I am happy to announce the chair that I have been working on for a while is finally DONE! See my previous post here.

I found this chair on craigslist for $25 a while back and have been working on refinishing it. But between work, full time MBA and wedding planning (and not having a sewing machine to finish the last details) I haven’t had chance to finish before this weekend. As of the last step the only thing I had to do was the double cording for the trim.

So here we go! First I had to sew the double cording. I had never done this before. I have done single cording but for this project I wanted to use double. I used some good how do’s from bloggers I love. I found them very helpful see them here and here.

Sewing Double Cording

First I had to sew the cording. When I finally bought my sewing maching a couple months ago I bought a cording foot. It is heaven. If you want to make cording/piping for any project. I recommend getting one. I think mine was only about $20. It guides the sewing so nicely it practically sews itself.

Double Cording

It’s surprising how much cording you need to make for a full chair. I would say I probably used over 30 yards to do the whole thing.

Double Cording


Fabric Glue

The different Blog call for different glues. This is the one I used for the trim and it worked great! Be careful – it dries fast!

Adding the Trim

Next was just gluing it down. I did small sections at a time because the glue dries so fast. I put glue on the chair I found it worked better than putting it on the double cording itself.

The cording is so nice. I hides lots of mistakes.

Adding the Trim

Adding the Trim

I just put the ends and put some fray – check on it. I have seen different ways to handle the ends. In my upholstery class I took we overlapped fabric on the one send to make it more seamless. This way it easier and you can barley tell there is a seam. Just cutting is the way Little Green Notebook recommended so I took her word for it!

Final DIY Upholstery

Final DIY Arm Chair - Upholstery

Final DIY Upholstery

Final DIY Upholstery Arm Chair

Ta Da! Here is the final. I know it took a while but in reality I didn’t spend that much time doing it. It only took long because of my busy schedule and not having time to do it right in a row!

What do you think?

Upholstering Chair: Part 4

 Over break I FINALLY had time to work on my chair again. Click here for part 3. And it is continuing to go smoothly.

DSCN0648First I stapled the burlap to the back of the chair. I cut the burlap to a square bigger than the back of the chair. Pull really tight. Then you can cut the burlap to size after.


 Next I used cotton stuffing to give the back a bit of padding.


DSCN0645  Next do the same thing to with the fabric. Cut to a bigger size. Pull tight, staple, and cut. For the back I used a different fabric, leapoard for a bit of print mixing.


 Next I just had to do the same thing with the front.



 On the front I also used batting over the cotton fill. I found that the cotton fill looked a bit bumpy so the batting helped make it look a bit more smooth.




Next I have to do the pipping trim and fill in a couple paint chips from where I nicked the chair a bit.

Upholstering Chair: Part 3

This Sunday I FINALLY had some time to work on my chair again. I am feeling good about how much I got done with the project! To see the previous steps check here.

First I had to fill in the coil areas with cotton fill  prior to putting the cushion on. This helps to make your platform real even.

Next I took the cushion that I already glued to burlap in the last segment and stapled down to the bottom.

Next, I added the cotton batting. I used this step to make sure that the cushion was stapled down nice and tight. Any area that wasn’t secure in the previous step I just made sure to reinforce as much as possible.

Trim your edges!

Next I just started laying out the fabric and slowly stapling down sections. Always start in the center of each side doing one at a time. For instance I stapled the front center with one staple first. The one in the back center, left center, right center. Slowly you keep rotation like this keeping the fabric stretching down and outside.

The corners are always a little tricky and take some working.

You can see here that around one of the arms I made a bit of an oops. Around each arm I cut a small notch out of the fabric to make it so the fabric can wrap around the arm. Here you can see I cut it a bit too deep. I put some fray check on it to make sure it doesn’t unravel anymore. Hopefully the double cording will cover the cut!

Ta Da! cushion all done. I think it went well for my first time ever trying the process!

Upholstering Part 2

So last time I posted on my upholstery project I had just finished the coils. You can see it here. Here is the progress I made on Sunday.

First I covered the coils with a burlap fabric. After I first stapled down in the center of the wood I then folded the excess fabric back so it wasn’t flapping over the edge.

Next I stappled 2 inch cotton edging to the sides. Lesson for next time: I bought this at JoAnne Fabrics – they didn’t have proper edging like an upholstering shop would. An upholstery shop would have had a fabric edge hanging off the roll making the stapling easier. You can find some here at DIY Upholserty.com.

Next sizing up the cushion. Lay it down…

Draw a line from underneath to create a line of where to cut the cushion.

Next I used spray glue to glue pieces of burlap to the cushion. It was pretty tricky to get it to glue down. I sprayed A LOT to make sure it had enough to stay. They I placed some books on top to hold it down. The can says it takes about 3 hours to dry….so now we wait…

Stay tuned. PS click here for the detailed instructions I followed as I was working on this, since it was my first biggest project.

Upholstering with Coils – take 2

So this weekend I finally had a bit of time to work on my upholtery project a bit more (you can see my last post here). With the right size coils it was much easier this time. 

Near the arms of the chair there were a couple tricky corners. I used a second nail for these ones to tie off the ropes. It worked well to act as an anchor.

In the start of each tie I anchored each with 2 nails. Pound the nails in slanted away from where you are pulling that way it gives you extra leverage and the nail is certain to stay more.

I think one lesson on this round was I still need to push the coils down harder next time. But for my first time doing it – I think it is ok.

After I created the cross overs next I had to put them in diagonally.

Each time another row was tied down it got easier and I was able to get the coils tigher.

For the first time I say it went better than expected. Hopefully next chair goes even better!