Northwest #10: Jean's Reupholstered Bench

Northwest #10: Jean's Reupholstered Bench

Jan 31, 2008

Name: Jean
Location: San Francisco
Time: The upholstering took several evenings. The painting took about 1.5 hours total, without counting time for paint to dry; it was oil based.
Cost: I spent under $50 for this project, including the cost of the bench originally and the fabric.


Tell us the tools and resources you used for the project:
I used:

  • Glazing liquid
  • Good stain for tint
  • Rags
  • Paint brush
  • Screwdriver
  • Rubber mallet
  • Staple guns
  • Pliers
  • Scissors
  • Box cutter

  • I bought the original bench on eBay, as well as the fabric.
  • I already owned the painting supplies.
  • I bought upholstery tacks at hardware store and trim (called scrim I think) to cover the staples at Britex fabrics.


    Share step-by-step instructions for how you completed the project:

  • I bought this new inexpensive bench on eBay but I did not like the fabric or the light color of the wood.
  • I bought a yard of plush fabric with a simple leopard pattern on eBay. When it arrived I could smell that it had been in a home with smokers so I had to hang the fabric outside on some windy days to get rid of the smell but it worked.
  • First I took off the old upholstery tacks and gold scrim that had been on the original bench.
  • I measured the length of the scrim in order to get the right amount of new scrim. I decided to leave the lightweight fabric already on the bench and just cover over it, rather than remove all the staples, as there were many.
  • The legs on the bench come off so I removed them and brought the bench downstairs to darken the wood.
  • I should have lightly sanded the wood but I did not. I mixed up the glazing liquid and some dark wood stain. I applied the glaze but after one coat I realized I wanted it darker so I applied two more coats, letting it dry in between.
  • Then I cut a piece of the fabric large enough with some extra, to cover the bench.
  • I began stapling all around the top, beginning with opposite sides, stretching the fabric as best I could. Sometimes the staple would not attach due to the original staples underneath but I managed to find a good place for the staples eventually.
  • Then I trimmed the fabric to just below the staples with scissors and box cutters.
  • I applied the new scrim with black upholstery tacks. I used black instead of the more traditional 'brass' look ones because I was not sure if I could maintain a perfectly straight line of tacks and I thought the black on the black scrim would be less obvious. I used a rubber mallet to tap in the tacks which I covered with cardboard in order to keep the black finish on the tacks from chipping off. I used fewer tacks than the original bench. At the corners I folded in the fabric just as the fabric underneath was folded.
  • Then I screwed in the legs and voila, my new bench.

  • More posts in Do it Now! The January Jumpstart Contest 2008 - Northwest
    moving--truck moving--dates moving--dolly moving--house moving--cal Created with Sketch. moving--apt