DIY Barstool Reupholster


We built our house almost 9 years ago - which was at the height of the brown/taupe phase in decorating. Unfortunately, I was all about this decor scheme and went overboard in my purchases of brown furniture. That included lots of brown leather...and even more faux brown leather. How is it that every room in my house seems to have at least one piece of faux brown leather?!?! I have been slowly replacing all these dated pieces. My basement barstools had seats made from this wonderful fabric. I really didn't want to spend the money to replace them since they are pretty good quality and we do not use them a lot. I decided to recover them myself and was impressed at how easy they were to recover. Simply recovering the cushions only took about 15 minutes per stool. The nail heads took me 3 episodes of Downton Abbey, so plan accordingly :)

What you will need:

Screwdriver
Scissors
Fabric - see below for fabric selection
Staple gun - I do recommend a staple gun specific to upholstery. I tried to use Aaron's staple gun from his worksheet and I could barely use it ;) These guns also use staples specific for upholstery. That being said, if you can operate your staple gun you have at home, go ahead and use that.
Nail heads (if using)
Mallet


Begin by removing cushion from chair frame. 


I recommend covering over the existing fabric. Depending on the original fabric, it may be easy to remove. I chose to save myself the time and effort of leaving on. My original fabric did have a piping detail on the edging of the seat, but this was not noticeable when recovered.

When choosing fabric, keep thickness in mind. The fabric I found was a thinner linen. Thinner fabrics are not as forgiving and will show imperfections in your upholster. The downside of thicker fabrics is they can be more difficult to work with. I usually end up selecting based on the look of the fabric. If using a thinner fabric, I would recommend doing a double layer of the fabric (below). 

 I cut each stool a square piece of fabric with adequate fabric on each side. Begin by stapling one side of fabric on the barstool. When stapling, remember not to cover your original screw holes.

 Then staple the side opposite of the first side you attached. Pull the fabric tight, but not so tight it is pushing down on the cushion.

 Before stapling the other 2 sides, staple up the corners. I fold them directly over the corner using a small piece from each side. Be sure to staple this piece down very secure.


Pull the unstapled side over the corner piece you just created. Pulling this side up will cover some of the corner piece. 

 Repeat process for each side.

I cut my squares very generous :) and probably went overboard on that. I would recommend having excess than not enough since it can be difficult to keep the fabric tight using a small piece and stapling. I cut away the excess fabric.

As I mentioned above, the fabric I chose was a thin linen and I did use 2 layers to recover. This helped hide some of the original cushion underneath. If your fabric is thicker, you will not need to add a second layer.

Repeat the upholstery process with fabric piece number 2. 

 Reattach to stool.
 You can leave stool as is or choose to add nail heads.

 Adding nail heads is a time consuming process, but adds a lot to the look. They are very easy to hammer into the stool. I eyeballed the spacing of the nails. The nice thing about nail heads is they do not have to be exact and you see some small variations in placement and spacing (even in really nice furniture).
I have used nail trim on previous projects. This is a great product that saves a lot of time. I used it on my headboard and went on in half the time that the individual nail heads took. I recommend the individual nail heads for a project like a barstool because this will get more wear and the nail trim is not near as sturdy.



Final look! They made a HUGE difference in my basement and the small change really helped brighten and update the area. One set of faux brown leather gone, 10 more to go! ;)
Good luck and let me know how your projects turn out!!

XO, Brooke

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1 comment:

  1. Do you remember around how much fabric you used?

    ReplyDelete

Hello, I am Brooke...wife + momma to 3! I love coffee, lists, and anything monogrammed. Here you will find fun things that inspire me and I hope you enjoy as well. Thanks for stopping by!! XO

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