The best tutorials for an upholstery project (and they aren’t mine)

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A few months ago I bought this bench at an estate sale for $50. Its taffeta upholstery and brassy legs were dated, but it was solid, and the length was good—perfect for the foot of a bed. So I scooped it up and planned to drop it off with an upholsterer.

But then I remembered this tutorial from Little Green Notebook posted several years ago. It was so in depth that when I read it way back then, I thought maybe tufting would be possible for a novice like me. So I looked up the tutorial, found an updated version that was especially helpful (using screws to secure the fabric = genius), and tackled the project myself. Even though my fabric didn’t drape as beautifully as velvet would have, the tutorial worked just fine.

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Using the foam the bench came with made the project easier. The foam already had holes cut where the buttons should go, and the foam was completely stain free. I would not have used the same foam had it been nasty, obviously.

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Here’s an “in-progress” shot that shows staple placement.

welting

This was my first foray into the world of welting, and let me just say that it makes this bench look so much more professionally done than it would have otherwise. It was super simple too; my mom sewed the welting for me, and I just paid attention to the construction when I took the old fabric off, then stapled the new welting where it had been before.

And the “after” shot:

bench and bed landscape

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Thanks, Jenny Komenda, for creating the best upholstery tutorials out there (honestly, she knocks everything out of the park).

Have any of you reupholstered furniture before? This project went well enough that I’ll probably try it again. It also saved me at least $100, though it did require lots of hours.

Tell me: Would you try an upholstery project? Have you reupholstered furniture successfully? If so, what are your secrets and tips? •

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2 thoughts

  1. Oh my word, I love this bench! Good work, it looks like a professional did it. I love the fabric you chose too. Did you just sand down the legs to leave them natural? This bench has such great bones–what a good find! We actually used Little Green Notebook’s tutorial when made our kids’ tufted headboards. I still love them. Awesome job!

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