How to Make Stain-Resistant Upholstery

Written by elizabeth reuter
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How to Make Stain-Resistant Upholstery
Many types of furniture and fabric can be made stain-resistant. (Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images)

Consider how well the upholstery of your chosen furniture will hold up against stains it might take from food, pets, children or other factors unique to your home. Whether you're making your own upholstery from scratch or modifying store-bought furniture, it's easy to make most fabrics resistant to many types of stains.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Store-bought fabric protector

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  1. 1

    Buy fabric protector appropriate for the material of your upholstery. Choose carefully, as some will leave a slippery sheen behind and others don't protect against oil-based stains.

  2. 2

    If you are making your own upholstery from scratch, use synthetic materials such as nylon or polyester, as they are naturally more stain-resistant. Avoid linen, silk and wool as they are difficult to clean. It's also difficult to make them stain-resistant as spraying them with anything, even fabric protector, can result in permanent damage. Use leather or vinyl as leather and vinyl protectors are sold in many automotive and hardware stores.

  3. 3

    Cover all non-upholstered parts of the furniture with plastic once you have the upholstery finished and set where you want it on the furniture. Spray the uncovered upholstery thoroughly with fabric protector.

  4. 4

    Follow the directions of your fabric protector. Some require you to brush the liquid in after spraying, while others need to be reapplied after a certain amount of time. Let the fabric protector dry before using the furniture.

Tips and warnings

  • Fibre-seal your fabrics for extra protection. This needs to be done at the manufacturing level, however, so you'll have to talk to a furniture dealer if you want to go this route.

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