The Most Important Thing to Know Before Reupholstering Your CouchHome Projects
Want to refresh your same old sofa? Read this first.
May 30, 2024
This Is the Easiest, No-Paint Way to Refresh Your Dining Furniture
Projects & Improvements
It’s practically no-mess.
Mar 28, 2024
This "Stunning" $160 Upholstered Headboard Will Make Your Bedroom So CozyDesign Ideas
It looks way more expensive than we'd imagined!
Mar 1, 2024
This Portable Spot Cleaner Is a Lifesaver for Pet Owners and Left Us Shocked at the Dirt and Grime It Pulled Out
It leaves our tester's furniture feeling clean.
Oct 19, 2023
9 Game-Changing Amazon Finds That’ll Rescue Old, Sagging, or Stained FurnitureLife
There's no need to spend hundreds on new furniture!
Sep 7, 2023
The Ten Commandments of Buying Used FurnitureLife
You see a chair on the curb. It’s sitting right in front of your building and it’s free. Or, you’re at the thrift store and spy a cheap sofa. But something holds you back. You’re just. not. quite. sure. If only there were guidelines — holy reminders if you will — of things to keep in mind while looking at used furniture. How do you decide if it’s the right thing to re-do? Or if you should run in the other direction?
Jul 17, 2020
Best Upholstery Fabric Options for Cat & Dog OwnersLife
When that luxurious velvet sofa catches your gaze for the first time, it’s easy to think, “I can totally do this, Fido will learn that he is not allowed up. Simple as that.” We’ve all been there, but let’s get real. Even if you become the dog whisperer and are indeed successful in keeping him off the sofa, it doesn’t necessarily mean it will stay clean.
Jul 15, 2020
DIY Project Test Lab Results: We Painted a Leather Sofa and Here’s What HappenedProjects & Improvements
This sofa used to be black, but I painted it brown. You can see how it looks, but I know what you’re thinking. Did it rub off on your pants? How does it feel? Is it stiff? Is it gummy? Can you scratch it with your fingernail? Does it peel? Does it stink? Does it poke you in the butt? Is it a tragic mess that will end up in a dumpster? Let me break it down for you. First, the paint I used was Angelus Brand Leather Paint in tan.
Jun 24, 2020
Before & After: Brittan’s Chair for the GenerationsProjects & Improvements
Last week I posted about Joy Cho’s photo album of her daughter Ruby’s first year. Today I’m sharing another project that captures memories in a completely different way. Click to see how this chair was transformed into a cherished memorial to family.Brittan grew up loving her mom’s photo albums.
Mar 11, 2020
How to Make an Easy, No-Sew CushionProjects & Improvements
If you read the January Cure diaries, you probably saw my window seats, both bare and then with cushions. If you’re interested, here’s how I made the cushions in about an hour. FoamUpholstery fabricPlywood SheetsThin Batting (Optional) Measuring TapeScissorsHammer or Rubber MalletStaple Gun (with staples of course)Foam CutterKnife, electric or otherwise1. Measure your space and cut foam to the same dimensions.
Feb 6, 2020
10 Easy-to-Find Secondhand Staples (and How To DIY These Thrift Store Finds)Design Ideas
Here are 10 secondhand staples you run into at thrift stores all the time, and 10 corresponding DIY projects to modernize them. Most are simple projects that are both do-able and transformative. Keep them in mind the next time you are wandering around a flea market, or in your favorite Goodwill. Mismatched Plates: These DIY tiered stands are inexpensive to make, and a great way to use old dishes.
Jan 16, 2020
We Tried 3 Fabric Paints On Upholstery and Here’s What HappenedProjects & Improvements
Last time we tested paint on vinyl, this time we’re testing it on softer upholstery fabrics. We’ve all seen chair makeovers on Pinterest and they look great —but just how comfortable are they? And how well does the paint hold up? Well, we’ve been wondering too, so we rounded up a couple pieces of furniture and put them to the test!
Dec 19, 2019
The “Present for Grandpa” Living Room MakeoverProjects & Improvements
Renovation by: Katie Location: Canada For Christmas this year, I decided to update my grandfather’s living room as my present to him. My grandmother passed away last February, and he needed a change – something that he could see everyday that would make him happy to remember his life with her. They had kept their 1960s furniture in near perfect condition, so I knew I would just need to update the styling of the room with fabrics and some interesting wall art.
Dec 19, 2019
Try This DIY Project!: Turn an Old Box Spring Mattress into Stand Alone Bed FrameProjects & Improvements
This DIY project is a great use for older box springs, and an affordable way to have a “brand new” bed. It only requires about four yards of upholstery fabric, and can be done in just a couple of hours… Katy from The Clever Bunny had a hand-me-down mattress which was relegated to her guest room. In lieu of a bed frame she chose to cover the box spring with fabric and add legs.
Dec 19, 2019
Upholstery Project: How To Make a DIY Headboard with Fabric SlipcoverProjects & Improvements
I get obsessed with things I see on Pinterest, and this padded headboard (okay, the whole place) is one of my recent fixations. I like the modern, streamlined look of it— but that it’s also more relaxed than a lot of the tufted, nailhead DIY headboards I see all the time.
Dec 19, 2019
DIY Upholstery Project: How Make Your Own Custom Fabric Piping (or Welting)Projects & Improvements
Piping (or welting if you prefer) adds a nice detail to DIY upholstery projects, and gives added tailoring to cushions and headboards. Choose the same color as your main upholstery fabric, or a fun contrasting color for more zip. It’s also easy and quick to make.
Dec 19, 2019
This Trendy Upholstery Fabric is like a Chanel Suit for Your Sofa and ChairsDesign Ideas
Shearling and sherpa lovers, meet your new favorite decor trend: Bouclé furniture.
Dec 17, 2019
Before & After: Worn Vintage Settee Gets a FaceliftProjects & Improvements
Last year Danielle picked up a vintage settee for $50 and, with her mom as co-pilot, wanted to take it on as her first foray into upholstery. She was conflicted about the fabric to use: something modern and bold or something more traditional? Readers chimed in, many urging her to have it professionally recovered instead of trying it herself and the majority of readers advised going with a classic print and color for the fabric. Did she take either piece of advice?… No and yes!
Dec 4, 2019
How To: Slipcover a Reading ChairProjects & Improvements
Time: 2 WeekendsCost: $120 This is one project that most (including ourselves) consider TOO HARD. Recovering a reading chair? Forget it. But NicoleMari’s patient, smart, inspiring instructions will soothe your nerves and give you confidence. NicoleMari submitted this project to our January Jumpstart Contest and tied for second place in her category (Thanks, Nicolemari!)… AFTERTell us the tools and resources you used for the project: I bought all my materials and notions at fabric.
Jul 4, 2019
Before, During, After: The Best Part of Any Project – Learning New SkillsProjects & Improvements
This isn’t your average DIY; I can’t give you simple step-by-step instructions or promise that you can get this done on a Saturday afternoon. After all, these chairs took me months to complete.A few years ago, I enrolled in a just-for-fun, one-morning-a-week course in Traditional Furniture Upholstery. The idea had been at the back of my mind for a while, as something which would combine my background in fashion textiles with my burgeoning interest in interiors.
May 6, 2019
Before & After + How To: Tufted Dining Chair Seat CushionProjects & Improvements
I posted this Before & After on Design Sponge a couple of years ago, but I never had the chance to show how I did it. You can figure out the paint part, obvi, but here’s how I actually tufted the seat. Enjoy!What You Need: 1 yd.
May 6, 2019
Before & After: Reupholstered Wingback Chairs for the Dining RoomProjects & Improvements
Jennifer picked up these chairs last year when she began planning for a dining room makeover. She knew she wanted two armchairs to anchor her dining room set, but wasn’t 100% certain how to finish them. As her vision for the space evolved, so too did her vision for these wonderful chairs.Jennifer stripped the chairs down to the wood frames then spray painted them with Rustoleum Metallic Gold with a top coat of spray poly.
May 5, 2019
Before & After: Rocking Chair Makeover for a New GenerationProjects & Improvements
This chair has been in Stephanie’s family for generations — she was rocked to sleep in it as a baby, and so was her granddad! She wanted to keep it around as a treasured piece of family history, but she also wanted to give it a little update — the result? A lovely chair with a fabulous new look, ready to rock the next generation… Stephanie’s new baby!
May 5, 2019
Before & After: Simple IKEA Wooden Bed Frame Gets a Luxe Upholstered LookProjects & Improvements
This little Ikea bed frame is cute and very economical, but it lacked a certain joie de vivre. With some MDF, batting, stylish fabric, and lots of clever planning, this little frame went from dull to delightful!Lisa from All Things Campbell had a design in mind when it was time to move her daughter to a toddler bed… she carefully sketched out her idea, and was able to complete the project in under two days.
May 5, 2019
Before & After: Ainhoa’s Stenciled Upholstery IKEA ArmchairProjects & Improvements
How do you add some personality to a plain Jane chair? If you’re like Ainhoa and can’t sew, try painting a pattern on it! The after has us practically buzzing:From Ainhoa: My aunt gave us an old accent chair she no longer had room for. My initial idea was to make a new cover out of a fun patterned fabric. The problem? I don’t really know how to sew, so I’d either have to learn, or ask someone for help. My next idea was to dye it.
May 5, 2019
Before & After: Coffee Table Turned Tufted OttomanProjects & Improvements
Brooke, from the home décor blog Inside-Out Design, started with this run-of-the-mill old coffee table, and with some ingenuity and a lot of handiwork, she and her husband transformed it into a one-of-a-kind hand-tufted ottoman.Brooke used West Elm’s Ikat Print by the Yard fabric as inspiration for completely transforming the coffee table.
May 5, 2019
Before & After: Brass Embellished ChairProjects & Improvements
Collecting chairs is a little bit of a guilty pleasure for me. I could spend whole weekends searching for them in flea markets and antique stores, or trolling the internet for rare ones. I’m that girl who will get giddy more giddy over a chair in someone’s home than over their shoe collection, and I have the Pinterest board to prove it! Thanks to a lucky Craigslist find, I scored this antique armless chair that was made in Italy over 60 years ago.
May 5, 2019
Before & After: Maria’s Craigslist Cane Chair MakeoverProjects & Improvements
After scoring these sweet cane back chairs from a Craigslist seller, Maria wondered what to do with them. Well, inspiration struck, and she shared her chic transformation with us.I’m a sucker for a DwellStudio fabric, so I must applaud Maria’s good taste (and cute styling)!From Maria: Way back in June, I found two great cane back chairs on Craigslist for a great price. The seller was so anxious to get them out of his basement that he even delivered them right to my door.
May 5, 2019
Before & After: Kid’s Corner Gets a Mini (Mario!) MakeoverProjects & Improvements
Katja gives full instructions, along with photos of the process, over at her blog, Shift Ctrl ART Thanks so much Katja — both projects look great!
May 5, 2019
The Ultimate Used Furniture Cleaning KitCleaning
With the season of flea markets and antique fairs now upon us, I’m prepping for the summer influx of secondhand furniture finds and putting together the ultimate used furniture cleaning kit. With most of these household items already in your kitchen, you’ll be ready to get any grimy piece sparkling in no time.  Baking soda. Mixed with water, baking soda forms a paste that polishes silver, lifts coffee and tea stains from ceramic and porcelain, and removes mildew and grime.
May 5, 2019
Before & After: Erin’s Chair Refresh on a BudgetProjects & Improvements
Bargain shopper Erin haggled this chair from an estate sale down to $10. It sat in her home, patiently waiting for a refresh, until she found the perfect fabric. See how she made over this chair for under $50 total:From Erin: I am an Architect Technologist by day and sewer/DIYer/furniture upcycler by night. I am a thrifty shopper, and limit most purchases to no more than $20.00. If it’s in the trash, even better!
May 5, 2019
Before & After: Pumping Up The Volume on a BenchProjects & Improvements
A few months ago, while searching for furniture to restore for an upcoming outdoor market, I came across this beautiful painted bench. She was so lovely to begin with that part of me debated whether I shouldn’t keep her as is. But seeing how much potential there was in this piece, I decided to up the wow factor and add a little more personality. Check it out!
May 4, 2019
Before & After: A New Side to IKEA’s ExpeditProjects & Improvements
Krys saw potential in Ikea’s popular Expedit shelf, and not just as vertical storage. When flipped horizontally, the unit fit perfectly in an awkward space in Krys’ dining room. Now, if she could only make it look like it belonged there and had a purpose… By modifying other simple upholstery projects she’d seen online (including a headboard and seat cushion), Krys custom created a restaurant-style dining banquette that’s cute, cozy, and packs extra storage.
May 4, 2019
Before & After: Retro Chair Reaps Benefits of ReupholsteryProjects & Improvements
Kaylei McGaw, Associate Editor at Lonny, inherited this ripped vinyl saucer chair from her Great Grandmother. Not wanting to get rid of it, she decided to hand it over to the talented folks at Chairloom. She picked fabric, they reupholstered it, and now the chair’s got another fifty years of life. See the transformation next…. Not only did baby get a new pair of shoes, she got a whole new wardrobe!
May 4, 2019
Before & After: IKEA Lack Coffee Table to Upholstered OttomanProjects & Improvements
We’ve seen IKEA coffee tables customized dozens of different ways. They can be retextured, studded, and even given heavy marble tops. But this hack takes it in a different direction and turns one coffee table into an upholstered ottoman. Over at IKEA Hackers, Marynell from Amusing MJ showed how she turned an IKEA Lack coffee table into an upholstered ottoman like the ones she liked from West Elm with some 5” foam batting from JoAnn’s and some upholstery fabric.
May 4, 2019
Before & After: A Red Retro Chair EvolutionProjects & Improvements
This red pod chair had seen better days, and Cathy of Retro Evolution Design knew she could give it some new life. The upholstery was old, dirty, and damaged. Not to mention the base, which was a little too tall, too heavy, and maybe a little bit ugly? Cathy recovered the chair in a sturdy linen tweed blend fabric. Her son fabricated a new “cats cradle” style wire rod base with angles that complement the chair above. Now all that’s missing is a custom ottoman to match!
May 4, 2019
Before & After: How Plycraft Met IKEA and Made a Great Chair BabyProjects & Improvements
Sometimes, while thrifting and searching about you come across something amazing, and in perfect condition. This wasn’t one of those times. Kelly found this old Eames-style Plycraft chair whose leather was nasty, grime-covered, torn and faded.
May 4, 2019
Before & After: From Cat Scratcher to Purrfect ChairProjects & Improvements
This chair was spotted in the free section on Craigslist, and listed as the “Attack Cat Chair.” Apparently, the owner couldn’t bear junking it, and Cat (yep, that’s her name too) was happy to take it on as a project. Cat used discounted remnants to reupholster the 1961 chair. It was more complicated to work on than she expected (especially when it came to the tufted back and buttons) but she made it through!
May 4, 2019
Before & After: Beat Up Chair Finds Way Back to BeautyProjects & Improvements
Tanya swiped this chair from a trash heap, shoved it in the back of her car, and and drove away without looking back. Over time, she grew sentimental about this “garbage chair,” and finally made the leap to reupholster it: The labor was $630 (which included repairs), new foam cost $50, and the velvet fabric was $250.
May 4, 2019
Quick DIY Tip: How To Cut Linen Fabric Perfectly Straight Every TimeProjects & Improvements
I learned how to cut linen properly last week, when I was wrestling with a very large piece of fabric for this DIY headboard project. Linen is a wily fabric and its loose weave likes to change shape a lot when handled. No matter what I did to line it up, the linen would shift and I couldn’t cut a straight line to save my life. Thank the heavens for this amazing tip: Here’s the fabric I used. You can see here how it “bends” and makes finding a true straight line difficult.
May 4, 2019
Before & After: IKEA Hack Makes the BESTA Even BetterProjects & Improvements
Suzanne saw potential in IKEA’s popular BESTA shelf, and not just as vertical storage. When flipped and tweaked, she was able to make it into something else entirely. Keep on reading to see the pretty remarkable transformation… This might just qualify for a hack and a half. Using the IKEA BESTA as a base, Suzanne custom created a DIY tufted banquette that’s sophisticated and stylish (and offers extra hidden storage as a bonus).
May 4, 2019
Before & After: Jenny Lind Becomes Furniture to “Chairish”Projects & Improvements
Forgive the bad pun in the title of this post, but do check out the makeover of this classic Jenny Lind-style chair, recently restored and revamped by Reddit user the Grizzard of Oz. After peeling off many layers of old upholstery, she stripped off the green paint and even used toothpicks to clean out all the nooks and crannies in the wood. The new natural looking wood stain is covered with a layer of wax for added protection.
May 4, 2019
How To Clean Velvet UpholsteryCleaning
I don’t buy into the I-can’t-have-nice-things-because-I-have-a-pet hype. This is especially true when it comes to textiles in my home. So when I spotted a gorgeous velvet sofa on Craigslist for a song, I did my research and went for it.
May 4, 2019
Before & After: Theater Seats Get a New Featured AttractionProjects & Improvements
These conjoined movie benches sat in Natasha’s garage for a while, just waiting for inspired intervention. It turned out that all they needed was a fabric good enough with which to reupholster them. Although they look like classic corporate waiting room fixtures here, the end result is far from staid… Straight from the Brenda Starr book of decorating, this comic-themed fabric is fun and unexpected.
May 4, 2019
Before & After: Louis Chair Gets a Royal MakeoverProjects & Improvements
Tranae picked up this Louis chair in good condition, but was less than excited about its outdated fabric. She paired it with a cheery modern floral that’s more suited to her style: From Tranae: After months of looking for a Louis chair at yard sales and thrift shops, I finally found one for $40. The chair was in good condition but I hated the fabric. First, I removed the old fabric and padding using a staple remover and pliers.
May 4, 2019
Before & After: Upholstered Chair Gets Pottery Barn-Inspired MakeoverProjects & Improvements
This floral patterned chair may not look classic, but with some Pottery Barn inspiration, Brittany was able to transform it into a stunning staple: From Brittany: Before reupholstering this armchair, I’d done a few smaller projects (think loose cushions and wood-framed side chairs), but this was my first time taking on a fully-upholstered piece. It was also my first time doing upholstery work for someone else.
May 4, 2019
Before & After: A Free Chair Gets a Feathered MakeoverProjects & Improvements
Chelsea picked up this chair for free, and dove into her fabric stash to find some new life for it. Check out the makeover that cost her $0: From Chelsea: I had been looking for a simple modern chair to use in our office makeover, and when I saw this sleek, chrome number in a garage sale leftover free pile, I jumped on it!
May 4, 2019
Before & After: The Hardest-Button-to-Tuft Chest MakeoverProjects & Improvements
Sarah wanted this cedar-lined chest to serve as extra seating in her music room. Instead of simply upholstering the top, though, she was inspired by a White Stripes song to try something a little more advanced. From Sarah: During my recent music room makeover, I found myself looking for ways to incorporate some extra seating. My sights settled on an old cedar-lined storage chest, which was the right height for seating but didn’t present the most inviting surface.
May 4, 2019
Before & After: Wingback Chair Gets a Wild Waverly PrintProjects & Improvements
It took three years, but Misha finally worked up the courage to tackle reupholstering this $5 Craigslist chair. We’re so glad she did—check out the impressive after: From Misha: After weeks of scouring Craigslist, I found the perfect chair – it was in good condition, only a few minutes away, & cheap ($5)! Then I began the search for the perfect fabric. After weeks of online searches & trips to Jo-Ann, I finally decided on a medallion print in a purple colorway.
May 4, 2019
Before & After: Danish Chairs Get a Fresh New FabricProjects & Improvements
Dena picked up this pair of Danish chairs at an antique market. The fabric was nasty, the finish not great, but she saw the potential. They look much more modern and fresh now: How much do you love that Nate Berkus fabric?? From Dena: A few months ago I spotted a pair of chairs hiding underneath a rug at Scott’s Antique Market.
May 4, 2019
Before & After: Plain Chairs Get the Artist’s TreatmentProjects & Improvements
Kaitlyn bought these chairs as a medium for her art show. The fabric she chose is definitely a work of art! From Kaitlyn: I bought these chairs from a local thrift store in Santa Fe, although they originally came from a hotel on the plaza. I bought them to reupholster and put in my college senior art show, where I am sharing a space with 8 other students. I wanted to create something that would be stick out, and also incorporate my skills outside of traditional studio art practices.
May 4, 2019
Before & After: Grody Gangso Goes GeometricProjects & Improvements
Dena found this mid-century set in bad shape. She cleaned them up with some fab new fabric—and shares a tip on how to get a crisp upholstery edge with one easy step: A gorgeous fabric to go with these Gangso Mobler pieces. And now for Dena’s tip on how to get crisp, pro results on that DIY upholstery job: use cardboard upholstery strips to wrap the cut edges before attaching to the underside of the cushion.
May 4, 2019
Before & After: Family Chairs Get a Photo (Re)FinishProjects & Improvements
Meghan got these chairs from her grandparents, and while they didn’t look like much, family photos revealed their vintage charm hidden under 80s upholstery. She decided to have their original style brought back, but with a twist. From Meghan: I inherited a pair of chairs from my grandparents when they were downsizing. The chairs were from the 1950s and I had several photos of my mother and Aunt crawling all over them when they were little.
May 4, 2019
Before & After: A “Fun and Flirty” Club ChairProjects & Improvements
Fabric is simply clothing for your furniture. Take time to create unique, one of a kind pieces that are a reflection of who you are and how you live! We took an “old and dirty” club chair, cleaned it up, reupholstered and made it “fun and flirty”! When we wear clothing, sometimes we dress casual, fancy, or sporty. This chair was created with a working woman’s apartment in mind. Someone who has traditional values while living an adventurous and colorful life.
May 4, 2019
The 2-Minute Trick to “Reupholstering” Your SofaDesign Ideas
Like color, pattern can be one of those anxiety-provoking design elements for the novice decorator. You think: “How can I tell if these prints go together?” “What if I’m using too many patterns?” “What if I get sick of them a month from now?
May 3, 2019
Before & After: An $80 Sofa Gets an Affordable and Easy RefreshProjects & Improvements
Amy fell in love with this sofa’s good bones and excellent cushions, even though the fabric was a little drab. After inspecting the piece to make sure it wasn’t too good to be true, she took it home and got to work and giving it a super easy and affordable refresh. From Amy: This is one of those sofas built with an incredibly sound construction, it’s something that is hard to find these days for an affordable price.
May 3, 2019
Shave It & Save It: How To Give Your Upholstered Furniture a Second LifeProjects & Improvements
Pilling on fabric is no good. It makes clothing and furniture look worn and tired, like it needs to be replaced. I certainly felt that way about this yellow chair before the most epic fabric de-fuzzer showed up on my doorstep. Friends, here me when I say this: This is the most satisfying $12.99 you’ll ever spend on a home-care appliance. I knew this type of tool existed, but I didn’t know how amazing the results would be when used on upholstery fabric.
May 3, 2019
5 Cheapskate Ways to Reupholster Your Furniture for LessProjects & Improvements
Get a brand new-to-you sofa or chair for college-kid prices.
May 3, 2019
Before and After: This Heavy Target Ottoman Is Now a Breath of Fresh AirProjects & Improvements
A reader felt that this “dark, old, manly faux leather ottoman” didn’t suit their apartment’s bright, new, laid-back vibe. So all it took was a staple gun and a colorful blanket to give it a fun, sunny new look.
May 3, 2019