Answers to Your Furniture Reupholstery Questions

Get the look and feel of new furniture without having to part with your favorite pieces by reupholstering couches, chairs, and more.

While sofas and chairs see a lot of love over time, they also see a lot of wear and tear. If your furniture needs an update but you're not ready to part with it, consider reupholstery. No matter if you want to refresh the look of your current sofa fabric or if the dining room chairs need new padding, find out how you can salvage your household favorites with furniture reupholstery.

Furniture Reupholstery 101

The visible effects of furniture reupholstery can have well-loved pieces of furniture looking like new. But, there is much more that goes into the reupholstery process than a quick before and after makeover. Reupholstery involves tearing a piece of furniture down to its frame, assessing and repairing damage to the frame, replacing padding, and applying new fabric. While furniture reupholstery can be an invasive process, a reupholstering service can offer the benefits of new furniture without forcing you to part with your favorite couch.

Common Items to Reupholster

Essentially, anything made of fabric can be reupholstered. There are even companies that will reupholster leather furniture. Popular items to undergo reupholstering include couches, chairs, and ottomans.

Furniture Reupholstery Cost Considerations

People who opt out of having their furniture reupholstered are usually deterred for one of two reasons: the cost or the overall condition of the furniture. Before getting into a furniture reupholstery project, it's important to know that this process can cost more than purchasing new furniture. But, many people still choose reupholstery for the priceless benefit of being able to keep sentimental or unique furniture. When considering specifics, keep in mind that the reupholstery cost will vary depending on the piece of furniture, the size, the style, the fabric, and if frame repair is necessary.

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Reupholster or Replace?

Since the cost of reupholstery can add up, you'll want to take some time to weigh furniture reupholstery versus furniture replacement. We recommend looking at the pros and cons of each option before making a final decision. From cost to condition to the specific piece of furniture, deciding to reupholster or replace furniture can be a big undertaking.

Reasons to Reupholster Furniture

If you have a piece of furniture that you love, that has sentimental value, or that is unique and no longer sold, reupholstery is a great option. But, before reupholstery, you should also make sure that your furniture still has good bones. A furniture reupholstering service can assess your furniture to determine if the current quality will stand up to reupholstering.

Reasons to Replace Furniture

Quality is key when it comes to reupholstery. If you have furniture that has been damaged or worn beyond repair, it may be time to purchase new instead of trying to reupholster. If cost is an issue, we recommend comparing the cost of a new piece of furniture with a reupholstering price estimate.

Choosing Furniture Fabric

Fabric is not only one of the most visible elements of a piece of furniture, but it can also be the main cost driver in reupholstery. If you are looking to stick to a budget, keep price in mind when choosing a fabric.

You'll first want to consider the specific piece of furniture when selecting a fabric. A well-loved living room sofa will likely need a tightly woven and durable fabric to withstand wear and tear. On the other hand, a decorative armchair that is not used as frequently may benefit from a lighter fabric. In addition to durability, don't forget to consider: texture, pattern, color, and stain resistance.

Better Homes & Gardens Tip: Don't be afraid to select a fabric that is completely different from the original furniture material. Sometimes, a totally fresh look is what's needed to reinvigorate your furniture.

Don't Forget Frame Repair

While it can be easy to get lost in fabric selection, don't forget that furniture reupholstery and frame repair go hand in hand. While your furniture is being reupholstered, we recommend asking the reupholstery service to check out the framework. Many reupholstery services are also able to repair any damage to the frame so your reupholstered piece will look great and feel sturdy.

Better Homes & Gardens Tip: To save money, you'll want to consider having frame repair and reupholstering done at the same time. Not only can this save on labor expenses, but it can also help you get the most out of your newly reupholstered piece.

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Couch Reupholstery

Once you find the perfect couch, it can be difficult to part with. So, it should come as no surprise that couches are a popular item to have reupholstered. But due to their size, you can expect to pay more for sofa and couch reupholstery than for chair reupholstery. Not only is size a cost factor, but it also plays a role in the difficulty level of the reupholstery process. To achieve the best results, it's often best to avoid taking on a couch reupholstery project on your own.

Is couch reupholstery out of your budget? Consider slipcovers! A local reupholstery service can likely make a slipcover in your desired fabric that's specifically designed to fit your sofa. Custom slipcovers can save you the cost of having to tear apart and rebuild the existing piece. Slipcovers are also a great option for furniture that still has solid padding.

Pillow and Ottoman Reupholstery

A reupholstered couch still needs to fit in with the rest of your space. This means you'll also need to consider how pillows and ottomans will match or complement the new fabric. If necessary, you can also have pillows and ottomans reupholstered to coordinate with new sofa and chair fabrics.

Chair Reupholstery

From flea-market finds needing new fabric to the armchair that's been in your family for generations, chair reupholstery is a popular service. Even leather chairs and office chairs can be reupholstered!

Reupholstering Dining Room Chairs

If you think reupholstery is only available for single pieces of furniture, think again. Many people choose to have their dining room chairs reupholstered so they can keep their dining room set together. With reupholstered dining room chairs, you can rest easy knowing that the finished product will still be a perfect match for the dining room table.

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