I am really excited to be sharing this DIY with you this month! This couch was my grandmother’s once upon a time. She spent a good amount of money on it in the 80s so it is a solid couch that would be at least $1,000 now. My older brother inherited it when my grandmother passed away. About 6 months ago, he asked if anyone else in the family wanted it. I decided to take it after I consulted a family friend about reupholstering it.
It sat in my parent’s basement for a long time. I had tackled a few other projects but this one was just too intimidating. I had done a lot of research on how to reupholster couches and even though I was confident I could do it, I just wasn’t ready to tackle it. A few weeks ago, I decided it was time. When I did all my research, everyone said that removing the old fabric was the most difficult part. Everyone else had used pliers and a hammer to remove the old stables. I went onto Amazon and found this upholstery staple remover and ordered it. With my Amazon Prime account, it came two days later! I also bought a heavy duty seam ripper and I am so glad that I did!
Once I started taking the cushions off of the couch, I thought the best way to get the fabric off was to tare up the seams. I was wrong, it didn’t do any good at all.
So I flipped the couch over and started to pull out the staples. This took about 8 hours total. There were staples everywhere! I think when I was completely done removing them, there were about 2,000 staples in total. The arms on this couch come off so it made getting fabric on and off really easy.
Once all of the fabric was off, I had a giant piece of foam cover wood…
I had originally decided to do the couch in a white fabric. I really wanted a white couch (not sure why). So I went to Fabric.com (best site for this kind of stuff and they always have a sale or a discount code) and found a fabric they were discontinuing. I bought 25 yards just in case I messed up or needed more fabric than I originally thought. When I started to recover one of the arms, I realized the error of my ways. The white fabric I had purchased was in fact a reupholstery fabric but was almost see through! You could see every fold and crease and could even see the yellow foam through it. I was heart broken. So I got back on Fabric.com and ordered a beautiful heavy navy fabric instead. Waiting for that to come while staring at my foam covered wood pieces was pretty painful.
When the fabric finally did come, I hurried to get the other arm covered so I could see the difference between the two fabrics. The navy was a much better choice. You can also see from the pictures above that I figured out how to wrap the fabric around the arm so it doesn’t look ridiculous! Here is how I did it:
Once the fabric was tucked into the arm, I stapled the fabric to the bottom of the arms. It is better to use a lot of staples, just in case the fabric pulls.
Once I had both arms done, getting the rest of the couch covered was easy. It honestly took me about 30 minutes to get the rest of it done. The bottom part is one piece and the top part that went over the back of the couch is another piece. I stabled each piece to the bottom of the couch.
Once the rest of the couch was done, I cut a piece of the white fabric I had originally bought for the couch to cover the bottom. I think this really finishes off the piece and keeps anything from getting into it!
Now I had the entire body of the couch done…so it was time for the cushions! This was the hardest part of the redo. The originally back cushions had to be replaced. They were goose feather and when I opened them up, the feathers went everywhere! So I bought three 24×24 pillows from JoAnne’s and used those instead. This made sewing the back cushions really simple. I just sewed them like a regular pillow and added a zipper to one end.
The bottom cushions were a lot harder. I took apart the original covers to use them as a template. When I sewed the first cushion, I sewed the sides to the top and then sewed the bottom on. This resulted in a funky, not so fitted cushion cover. I learned with the second cover to instead sew all of the side pieces together, then sew the top and bottom on. This was a much easier process and it turned out much nicer!
Once I was done, I added this name pillow from Aspen Lane. I am in love with this new couch, and it’s the first piece of furniture for our new place!
Let me know if you have any questions! I would love to see any reupholstery projects you have done!