Recovering Dining Table Chairs/Staples for Days

Monday, June 30, 2014

Our kitchen chairs came with an ivory textured fabric.  They got dirty.  We've had them for 7 years, and they held up alright for probably the first 5...until Max started eating at the kitchen table instead of his high chair.  While I'd like to put all the blame on him for the dirty cushions, I must admit I also played a tiny part when I spilled a can of red cream soda on one of them...insert wide-eyed-blushing emoticon here.

white cushion kitchen chair

I don't know how long it'll be until we get a different dining room set, so I decided to prevent future staining by going total grandma and putting a clear vinyl over my fabric.  I'd like to see red cream soda/otter pop/farm dirt get through that.

What you need:
  • 1 yard of upholstery fabric per chair*
  • 1 yard of clear vinyl per chair**
  • Staple gun
  • Staples
  • Pliers 
  • Screw driver
  • Hammer
  • Hair dryer
  • A sister (helpful, but not required)

* Please measure. A yard should be more than enough, but in my experience it's better to have too much than not enough, in my experience.  I found mine at Joann Fabric and used a 50% off coupon.

**I got the thinnest vinyl available.  I knew there would be plenty extra fabric I'd be trying to staple down and I didn't want to be fighting a thick vinyl on top of that.

Step 1: Covering with fabric

  1. Remove staples.
  2. Roughly trim fabric, staple sides. 
  3. Gather and staple corners.
  4. Pound staples in with hammer.
  5. Trim as neatly as possible to remove excess fabric.

First, I had to pull out the staples holding the finishing piece of fabric on.  It took a screwdriver/swear words/plier combination to accomplish.  

Staples for days.

Next, I cut the fabric leaving a generous allowance on all sides.  A little too generous actually, and if I were to do it again, I'd leave maybe a 3-4 inch allowance to make it less bulky.  I had to go back and trim down the fabric after I stapled it down. The plus side: I had plenty of fabric to hold on to as I stretched it tight across the seat.  So, up to you.  You can see here that I started by stapling along the sides, leaving the corners for last (mostly because I wasn't sure how I was going to tackle them).  

Staple one side and then the opposite side, making sure it's pulled tight with no wrinkles before moving on to the adjacent side.  

I hemmed and hawed over the corners for maybe 10 minutes, checking tutorials online and weighing my options.  At this point Kelli (my sister) tells me to just go for it.  So we grabbed the fabric, gathered it the best we could, and stapled the heck out of it.  I knew that I was going to be covering it in vinyl, so I knew I didn't need to stress about the corners looking perfect because they'd be difficult to see.  

After stapling the corners, we had to go back with a hammer to pound them in a little more because the fabric prevented the staple from sinking all the way into the wood.  A pneumatic staple gun would've been fantastic here.

Step 2: Covering with vinyl
  1. Roughly trim vinyl, staple sides down. 
  2. Use hair dryer on one corner at a time to make the vinyl softer and more moldable.  Gather and staple.  Repeat til each corner is complete.  Really truly, don't forget this step.  The hair dryer helped a ton.
  3. Pound staples in with hammer.
  4. Trim as neatly as possible to remove excess vinyl. 
  5. Staple finishing fabric on to the bottom of the chair.

I wish I would've stapled closer together on the finishing fabric.  Now that the seats are back on my chairs, it kind of gaps, and it bothers me a little.  Also, watch out for fingers when you're hammering staples back in or else...swear words.

Paul kindly re-attached the cushions to the chairs, with a little help from Max. Boom.  Done and done.

Nice grandma rockers in the back, yes?

Huge thanks to Kelli.  We did this during a week long visit to her home in Nevada, and without her, I probably wouldn't have gotten them done.

Her amazing blue and white duvet is from West Elm, in case you were wondering.



1 comment:

Try to be kind. Don't be spammy. Feel free to share a link to your site if it's relevant. If we feel like a comment is spam or otherwise inappropriate, it might get deleted.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Proudly designed by Mlekoshi playground