How to Cover Chairs With Vinyl

A dining room or kitchen chair covered in fabric is typically a food-stained mess. You could protect every chair in your home with an old towel to prevent these stains or you could re-cover them in something that won't stain. Vinyl can be cleaned with a simple swipe of a sponge. Vinyl also is available by the yard at most fabric stores. Adding extra padding during the process will make the chairs more comfortable, too.

Turn your chair over. Locate the screws that attach the seat pad to the chair frame. Unscrew and remove the pads from the frames.

Slip the tip of a screwdriver under the staples or pins that hold the fabric in place. Pry them from the chair. Remove the old fabric and batting.

Set the seat pad down on a piece of foam padding. Trace around it with a permanent marker. Trim the padding with a utility knife.

Place the fabric face down on a flat surface. Put the batting down on the fabric and set the padding on top of the batting. Place the chair seat on top of the padding.

Trim the fabric and batting with fabric shears. Leave at least two inches of overlap on every side for the fabric to be folded over the bottom of the seat.

Fold over the fabric and batting that will cover the front edge of the chair. Secure the fabric into place with a staple gun. Pull tightly on the fabric at the back of the chair. Smooth out any wrinkles and fold the fabric over the back of the chair. Secure with the staple gun.

Fold the remaining sides using the same technique. Smooth the fabric often to avoid wrinkles. Make sure that the corners look smooth before stapling.

Reattach the seat pads to the chairs.


Oilcloth is another good choice for easy cleaning. Oilcloth is a vinyl that has been coated with cotton mesh. It can be wiped clean just like vinyl.

Things You'll Need

  • Screwdriver
  • Vinyl fabric
  • Scissors
  • Batting (optional)
  • Foam padding
  • Staple gun
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About the Author

Lisa East Hunter is a consultant and freelance writer in Phoenix. Her background in marketing and technology led her to explore all avenues of writing. She is currently dividing her time between freelance writing and her consulting business. Hunter has a Bachelor of Science in management information systems and marketing.