How To Reupholster Dining Table Chair Covers In 6 Easy Steps

Okay it's been a long time coming, today I finally reupholstered my dining room chair cushions and they look a million times better and I'm going to show you exactly how I did it.

When choosing a dining table and chairs, I picked what I liked the look of, I knew I wanted a rustic vintage look. We were going with light grey and found the perfect table and chairs in our local antique shop, I immediately fell in love with it! It matched our dining room perfectly. It didn't occur to me whatsoever that with two children the beautiful light grey fabric chair covers wasn't the best idea.


A few months down the line and countless amounts of meals dropped onto the chairs, they began to look worse for wear. It's now been 2 years and after countless attempts at cleaning them they just looked awful, it was time I plucked up the courage to change them!


I'd get so embarrassed if people were over and pulled a chair out to sit on. You would see me wanting to cry in the corner and just hope they wouldn't notice.


Anyway I plucked up the courage to recover them (I had heard it was quite a tricky job). As the kids are still young and can't find their mouths I thought the best option would be to go for PVC instead of a soft fabric as I would be able to wipe them clean. It's the most practical option when you have young children but you can choose any fabric to reupholster your chair cushions.


So I got searching online and once I had found the perfect patterned PVC I just needed a staple gun and was ready to go! Luckily my dad had an electric one so my mum brought it over to give me a hand. She's loves little DIY jobs like this.


Luckily the padding in the chair cushions is still in good shape so I didn't have to change this. If yours need changing you'll need to buy some foam to replace yours. As I didn't need to replace mine I decided not to remove the old grey fabric making this job much faster and easier. If this is also the case with your chair then this is going to be a straight forward job.


How To Reupholster Your Dining Room Chair Cushions in 6 Easy Steps


What You Need

  1. Staple Gun with Staples
  2. New Fabric



Step 1 - Measure and order you fabric 

Measure your chair covers and allow for roughly 10-15 cm all around. It's better to be safe and have enough, you can always trim it if you have too much but you can't add if you don't have enough. This allows you to cover the sides and pin it under the cushion. If you have a material tape measure, measure the length and width of the existing fabric from under the cushion, over the top and back under again to where it ends. Only passing over the fabric and not the wood.


Our fabric was dirt cheap so I guessed and ordered a square meter for each cushion. Turns out I ordered WAY too much and have enough to make a table cover!


Step 2 - Cut Your New Fabric

Cut your brand new beautiful material to size making sure there is plenty of room to pull the material to the bottom of the chair cushion.


Note: If you have a patterned fabric, make sure it's centred once it's placed on your chair cushion.


Step 3 - Position Your New Fabric


Place your seat cushion on a hard flat surface. Now place the new fabric over the cushion in the correct position. Once you have done this flip the 2 upside down.


Note: If your material has a pattern like ours has, make sure it sits how you want it on the chair.


Step 4 - Staple Down One Side


Pull the material to the back/ bottom of the cushion and staple all across one edge to secure it by stapling it all the way along one edge.


Step 5 - Staple The Opposite Side

Pull the opposite side nice and tight and staple down that side.


Note: you might find it easier to use a second pair of hands from now on.


Step 6 - Staple The Edges

With the front and back secured you now need to secure the sides. Carefully fold the material at the corners so that there are no creases or loose bits. Take your time on working out how it will go best. Make sure it's pulled tight, then staple down, all the way along doing both sides.


Note. Make sure it's tight and secure. Place as many staples as you require as nobody will see these once the chair cushion is placed back on the chair.


It's up to you if you wanted to cut a square to cover the bottom of the cushion, we decided not to on this occasion.


Place the cushions back in their respective chairs and there you have it, as good as new. No more panic attacks when guests come over and cleaning will be as simple as a quick antibac wipe (don't judge). Although after reupholstering the cushions it looks like the chairs need a good makeover. A new paint job I think.


Pictures of Before, During and After!

diy chair cover

diy chair cushion reupholster


We hope you enjoyed this post about how to reupholster your dining table chairs and most importantly be brave and give it a go for yourself. It wasn't anywhere near as hard as I thought it would be.


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