How to restuff a couch

Written by josh baum
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How to restuff a couch
Photo by Andrew Beierle

Restuffing the cushions of a couch can breathe new life into what has become an uncomfortable and well-used piece of furniture. Whether you can find replacement cushions from the manufacturer or decide to make your own, this is always a relatively easy and affordable do-it-yourself task. Consider trying it on your old couch before replacing it with something new.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Measuring tape
  • Couch
  • Sheets of foam
  • Cotton batting
  • Fabric glue
  • Thread
  • Needle

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  1. 1

    Examine the tag on the couch to determine its model number and manufacturer, then contact the manufacturer to inquire about the availability of replacement cushions. The easiest way to do this, in most cases, will be to visit the website of the manufacturer and send an e-mail to the customer service department. A manufacturer's website may also have online catalogues from which you can order replacement cushions directly.

  2. 2

    Order replacement cushion foam inserts designed specifically for your couch if at all possible. If you can find these, take the stuffing out of your old cushions and skip to Step 7. If you cannot find custom replacement cushions, proceed to the next step.

  3. 3

    Unzip the zipper on every cushion you want to stuff and remove the stuffing. In almost every case, the stuffing will consist of sheets of foam or custom-fitted pillows stuffed with cotton batting.

  4. 4

    Measure the dimensions of the cushion covers that are stuffed with foam sheets. You will need to put your hands inside of them and restore them to their original shapes to measure some dimensions.

  5. 5

    Go to a fabrics store and buy enough sheets of foam to stuff all of your foam stuffed cushions. Refer to your measurements to make sure that you have enough. You can choose either low density or high density foam--high density foam is firmer. If any of the cushions are stuffed with pillows filled with batting, buy some cotton batting and consider buying fabric glue if you don't want to sew. You should estimate how much batting to buy based on whether or not you want to replace all of the batting or just add to it.

  6. 6

    Cut the foam sheets, if necessary, to fit the exact measurements of each cushion cover that was previously stuffed with foam. If you must, use multiple pieces cut to various sizes to form the perfectly sized block of foam, but make sure that your measurements are as exact as possible.

  7. 7

    Carefully stuff your custom-cut foam blocks into the corresponding cushion covers and zip them up.

  8. 8

    Restuff any cushions that were originally stuffed with pillows. If you ordered pillows from the manufacturer, simply tuck them all the way inside the cushion covers and zip them up. If you bought batting, cut one of the seams in each old pillow and stuff it evenly with fresh cotton batting. When each pillow is as full as you want it, close the seam using either a thin line of fabric glue or a needle and thread. Then stuff each pillow into a cushion cover and zip it up.

Tips and warnings

  • If you're having trouble getting multiple foam blocks into a tight cushion cover while keeping them together, you can glue them into a single block first using fabric glue.

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