How to Recover a Sofa Chair

A great alternative to buying a new sofa chair is to recover your existing one. This will save you money and time spent searching for the perfect sofa. Whether you want to salvage antique furniture or design your own living room scheme, recovering your sofa will enhance the appearance of your space.

When recovering your sofa chair you have two options. You can remove and replace the sofa fabric or purchase a sofa slipcover.

Measure your sofa. Also, measure the cushions. If you are choosing to remove the old fabric, you want to make sure you purchase enough fabric to recover sofa and cushions. If you are choosing to purchase a slipcover, you will want to know the size of your sofa in order to determine the proper fit.

Select your new fabric or slipcover. Sofa slipcovers are made specifically for furniture. Using your measurements, decide whether you want your slipcover to fit loosely or snug. A loosefitting slipcover will create a more comfortable feel, while a snug fit will look more tailored. If you are choosing to remove the old fabric and recover your sofa, choose fabric made for covering furniture. This fabric will be more durable and often stain-resistant. Choosing a fabric unsuitable for recovering furniture can result in time wasted and money lost.

If you have chosen to recover your sofa with a slipcover, you are done. Simply recover your sofa. If you are recovering your sofa by removing the old fabric, the next step is to remove the old fabric. Use a pair of scissors to carefully cut the old fabric from the wood frame located at the bottom of the furniture. Take notice of how the fabric is stapled around the frame so that you can mimic this when recovering the furniture.

Cover your sofa with new fabric. You will not need to cover the seat area of the sofa, just the back, arms and sides. Refer to the way the old fabric was positioned. Tuck the extra fabric into the sides of the wood frame. Then, gently pull the extra fabric through the frame and smooth the fabric over the sofa for a snug fit.

Staple your fabric to the wood frame. Refer back to the way the old fabric was stapled, and staple the extra fabric onto the wood frame accordingly.

Trace your old seat cushions and/or pillows onto the fabric and cut the fabric. You can cover your old pillows without cutting off the new fabric, or you can purchase foam stuffing and start from scratch.

If you choose to start from scratch, sew the cushion fabric together one side at a time, leaving an open end to insert foam stuffing. Sew the closing end to complete cushion recover. If you are choosing to recover your old pillows, simply sew the fabric around the existing fabric.


Recovering your sofa chair can be a challenging job. Consider getting someone to help you. If removing the old fabric is too challenging, you may skip many of these steps by simply purchasing a slipcover.

Things You'll Need

  • Measuring tape
  • Scissors
  • Fabric or slipcover
  • Staple gun
  • Pen or pencil
  • Sewing machine or needle and thread


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About the Author

Based in Baltimore, Maryland, Damica Brownswood has been writing music articles for over four years. Her most recent articles have appeared in several notable online music sources. Brownswood is currently pursuing a career in the entertainment business. In her spare time she enjoys saving money by creating things from scratch.