How to Reupholster Chair Cushions

A great way to give a room a new look is by reupholstering the chair cushions.

How to Reupholster Chair Cushions

Chair CushionChair Cushion
It is an easy and quick fix to spruce up any room. Upholstery fabric that is used on the chair can also be used for the window treatment. Old chairs can be brought back to life by reupholstering and can last indefinitely using this method. Whether the fabric is worn, the foam is flat or a new decorating look is needed, you can make use of old chairs by reupholstering.

Turn the chair over and using a screwdriver, remove the screws on the bottom of the chair that are holding the cushion in place. Most of the time, these screws are located in the corners of the chair. When all of the screws have been removed, lift the chair cushion away from the chair.

Use a needle nose pliers and remove the staples on the bottom of the chair cushion. These staples are holding the upholstery fabric in place. When all of the staples have been removed, peel back the fabric away from the cushion.

Remove any foam that is remaining on the chair. When this has been removed, only the bottom board of the chair will be left.

Use the board as a guide and trace the outline of the board on a piece of foam. Cut the piece of foam along the outline.

Spray adhesive spray on to the foam and place the foam on the chair board. Press down on the foam so that it adheres to the board.

Place the board, foam side down, on the upholstery fabric. Bring the fabric up around the board to determine the measurements of the fabric that will be needed. The fabric should cover at least 2" of the board along the edge. Any excess fabric will be trimmed later. Using the scissors, cut the upholstery fabric to size.

Place the board, foam side down, on the upholstery fabric. Bring the fabric up the side of the board and staple in place on the top board. Start by putting the 1st staple in the middle to hold the fabric in place. Staples should be approximately 1" from the edge of the board. Continue stapling until the 1st side is secure. Do not staple the corners at this time.

Go to the opposite side of the board that was just stapled and repeat the same process. Then go ahead and staple the 2 remaining sides.

Pull the fabric at the corner on to the board. Make pleats with the fabric and staple to hold the pleats in place. Repeat this for all 4 corners. After the fabric is completely stapled, use the scissors to trim away the excess upholstery fabric.

Place the seat cushion on the chair frame. Using the screwdriver, replace the screws that hold the chair cushion in place. Repeat these steps for each chair that needs to be reupholstered.

Things You Will Need

  • Screwdriver
  • Needle nose pliers
  • Foam
  • Upholstery fabric
  • Adhesive spray
  • Staple gun and staples
  • Scissors


  • It is safer to have a helper hold the chair cushion in place when putting it back on to the frame.
  • When the chair cushion is removed from the frame, tighten any loose screws on the frame. Make any necessary touch ups to the chair frame at this time.


  • When removing the screws to remove the chair cushion, make sure not to remove any screws that are holding the frame of the chair together.

About the Author

Based in Florida, Rosemary Rugnetta has been a freelance writer since 2007 specializing in home and garden topics and real estate/mortgage. She is a former property manager and mortgage underwriter who writes for eHow and Answerbag as well as private clients. She has completed continuing education courses in writing, construction management and design.