DIY furniture upholstery. Nuances of work

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In this article: how to choose upholstery; how to choose foam rubber; characteristics of foam rubber; how upholstered furniture is upholstered; what tools and materials will be needed; the sequence of the upholstery of the sofa; change or not change the filler when changing the upholstery; some of the nuances of upholstery.

DIY furniture upholstery

DIY furniture upholstery

A sofa, an easy chair, some kind of sofa or ottoman are obligatory pieces of furniture in any apartment or house. They decorate living rooms, you can comfortably sit in them and watch TV, read the latest press or your favorite book. Two problems usually arise with upholstered furniture: how to arrange it best and how to replace the upholstery. Brainstorming at a family council will help solve the first problem, and this article will help to cope with the second problem..

Despite the desire of the owners to preserve the impeccable look of their favorite piece of furniture for as long as possible, many factors interfere with this desire: restless children, pets, hot drinks (they are difficult to hold in their hands), neighbors from above (they are periodically poured), cosmetic repairs (and like cement got under the film on a chair?), etc. In other words, the upholstery takes on an unpresentable look and you need to do something about it. The solution to the problem is to haul furniture with your own hands. Doubt that you will succeed? How will it work out – after all, the master’s work is afraid!

It should be borne in mind right away that furniture upholstery is a laborious process. The first thing to do is to completely disassemble the piece of upholstered furniture into its constituent elements. Typically, these elements will be sidewalls, backrest and seat. Then you need to completely remove the old upholstery, loosening it at the joints – try not to tear it apart, because it will be possible to carve out a new upholstery. Further – to assess the condition of the foam rubber, it may have to be replaced. We install new foam rubber, stretch and fix the fresh upholstery, assemble the elements of a piece of upholstered furniture. This is how the upholstery is replaced, if we consider the process itself.

Below is a detailed description of the banner of the Soviet-style sofa-book, as one of the most difficult objects for independent work on replacing the upholstery and filler.

Necessary tools for self-upholstery of the sofa: Construction (furniture) stapler, 12 mm staples for a construction stapler (2 packs), screwdrivers (plus and minus), pliers, wallpaper knife, hammer, round-nose pliers, scissors, harsh threads, a needle, writing chalk. You may need a drill, nailer and PVA glue. A digital camera is useful, however, a camera on a mobile phone is enough.

How to choose upholstery and filler for upholstered furniture

The most common upholstery materials are flock, courtesan, velor, jacquard, tapestry and chinilla – see more about these materials here. .

Furniture hauling tips

Foam mats used for upholstering furniture differ in three parameters: thickness of the mat, density and hardness. The optimal thickness of the foam mat should be: for the seat and backrest – at least 40 mm, to add volume to the sides of the sofa (chair), 20 mm thickness is enough. Repair of upholstered furniture is carried out with foam rubber with a density of 25 to 30 units. (or kg / m3) – for backs and more than 30 units. – for seats with hardness up to 46 units.

Its service life depends on the density and stiffness of the foam rubber – the lower the density, the higher the tendency of the foam rubber to crumbling and deformation during physical exertion. Higher rigidity increases the wear resistance of the filler, but decreases its elasticity. Therefore, in the upholstery of furniture for seats, foam rubber of two different types of rigidity is often used: a harder first layer, then a layer with less rigidity.

In addition to foam rubber and upholstery fabric, you will need a rough cotton fabric or canvas – it is covered with foam rubber and only after that the upholstery fabric is attached. This creates a double barrier for dust..

How to calculate the right amount of material for upholstery

The required amount of foam rubber is determined after measuring the places for its laying on the sidewalls, backrest and seat. Upholstery fabric and canvas are required in the same amount, the total footage is determined after measuring the old upholstery. It is necessary to purchase materials in larger quantities than actually required – by about 10-15%. So you can protect yourself from errors in the calculations and the drawing can be adjusted.

Change the upholstery of the sofa

Stage one

We disassemble the sofa-book into its constituent elements. To do this, you need to disconnect the sidewalls by unscrewing the fasteners between them and the frame. We remove the sidewalls to the side and disconnect the seat and back from the frame. We remove the locking mechanism from the back and seat, separating them from each other. In the process of disassembling the sofa into elements, a digital camera will come in handy – before dismantling, take a photo of the fastening procedure, this will greatly facilitate the reassembly after the furniture upholstery is completed.

Sofa book repair

Unfasten the upholstery on the sides – it is usually stapled at the bottom facing the floor. To remove the staples, use a minus (flat) screwdriver and round-nose pliers – you need to pry off the bracket and remove it with round-nose pliers. Do not cut the old upholstery – loosen and pull it off the side of the sofa. Under the old upholstery, there will be either a layer of foam rubber, or cotton batting or synthetic winterizer, connected to the wood (plywood) base of the sidewall with glue or staples. If you are satisfied with the state of this layer, you can leave it unchanged. Nevertheless, if the sofa has been in your family for a long time (more than 7-10 years), then its filler is unlikely to be in good condition and various insects could well have settled in its contents..

Suppose that you still decide to replace the sofa filler – it must be completely removed from the sides. You don’t need to be careful here – rip it off without ceremony. Inspect each side panel: remove the remaining staples and pieces of filler without touching the fastening screws that connect the sides to the base of the sofa.

Padding of sofas

So, you have completely exposed the basis of the sidewalls – it’s time to think about whether you want to change their appearance, for example, give them volume. To get the volumetric (rounded) sides of the sofa, you need foam rubber with a thickness of 20-40 mm. Do not put foam rubber from the inner, invisible from above part of the sidewalls, otherwise it will be difficult to connect them to the frame.

Lay the sidewall on a sheet of foam rubber with its outer (outer) side and with a wallpaper knife make a pattern so that the foam covers the entire outer side of the sidewall and 45-50% of the inner side (i.e. the section of the sidewall from the top to the sofa seat). On the left and right, make an allowance of about 70-80 mm to wrap the sidewall from the ends. Then pull and wrap the foam rubber along the ends of the sidewall, securing it with staples using a construction stapler. Next, fasten the foam rubber at the bottom of the front side and, wrapping it around the top of the sidewall and pulling it, secure it from the inside. Now it’s the sailcloth turn – place the foam-covered sidewall on the unfolded canvas and cut it open with scissors. The canvas should completely cover the entire layer of foam, it must be fastened from the bottom, then pulled, wrapped over the top and secured with staples. Then pull and fasten on the sides – first one side, then pull and fasten the other.

If you decide not to add volume to the sidewalls with foam rubber, put cotton batting or synthetic winterizer on them in one layer, followed by wrapping with canvas. A line of upholstery fabric – it needs to be cut out using the old upholstery as a template, then sewn and put on the sidewalls, tightly pulled and fastened with staples from below. When cutting new upholstery, be sure to match the pattern on both sides, do not confuse the wrong side and the right side of the upholstery fabric. The larger, due to the laid foam rubber, the volume of the sidewalls must be taken into account when cutting the material, slightly increasing the size of the patterns.

Furniture restoration – back and seat line of a sofa-book

Move the finished sidewalls to the side so that they do not interfere, placing them vertically. Start from the seat – carefully remove the old upholstery, remove the filler, exposing the spring block. Inspect the springs: if they are damaged, replace them. If the wooden seat frame is loose or defective, replace them and reinforce the frame using furniture screws of sufficient length..

Change the upholstery of the sofa

Lay a thick fabric on the spring block, attaching it in several places to the block with a coarse thread and a needle. Lay the foam – first a layer of hard foam, then softer – across the frame and the spring block installed on it. Attach the foam to the front of the wood frame, pull through the spring block and secure to the back of the frame, then to the sides. Next, you need to cover the foam rubber with a canvas cloth, attaching it to the front of the frame, pulling it and securing it on its back side – pull it with some force, avoiding folds. Fasten the canvas at one end of the frame, stretch and secure at the other end. When you have cut new upholstery from the old one, take into account the larger amount of filling. A variant of the upholstery solution – without making a cut for the old upholstery, fasten and tighten the new upholstery fabric in the same way as the previous canvas, i.e. fixing it in front of the wooden frame, and then pulling it tightly and securing it at the back, just also fix it on the sides.

Backrest upholstery

It is made similar to the seat upholstery, but with some caveats. When laying the filler, hard foam rubber is not used, only soft foam. The foam rubber layer is attached only to the upper part of the wooden frame and is not displayed on the lower one – it must be cut along the edge of the spring block. Why is this done – if you remove the backrest foam from edge to edge of the wooden frame, then it will either not be possible to unfold / fold the sofa-book after collection at all, or it will be extremely difficult – the volumetric foam will completely block the gap between the seat and back flaps.

We repair the sofa

If you remove a layer of foam rubber from edge to edge of the wooden frame only on the sofa seat, then the remaining gap will be sufficient to unfold / fold the sofa. When hauling furniture with your own hands, be sure to pay attention to this nuance. Let me remind you once again – watch out for the coincidence of the pattern of the upholstery on the seat and back!

Padding of furniture – the final stage

All elements of the sofa-book are covered and ready to assemble. Inspect the main frame of the sofa by replacing the damaged parts and reinforcing the loose ones using furniture screws and PVA glue (it is better to use PVA dispersion – it is more saturated). In the process of upholstering furniture with your own hands, the final assembly of a piece of upholstered furniture is one of the most difficult stages..

Repair of sofas

It is necessary to install and fix the locking mechanism, making sure that it is firmly fastened – if necessary, bore the holes in it for larger screws and fix the locking mechanism frames to them. When connecting the back and seat of the sofa together, force is required. If it is not possible to connect, then the layer of foam rubber between them is too large – carefully unfasten the upholstery and canvas on the inside of the seat frame and cut off part of the foam rubber with a wallpaper knife, i.e. reduce its volume. Pull and secure the canvas and upholstery again, then try to connect the back and seat with the locking mechanism – everything should work out.

Install the backrest and seat of the sofa, connected to each other, on the main frame, make sure the attachment is good. Then attach first one, then the other side. Check the folding / unfolding sofa, if necessary loosen / tighten the fasteners slightly.

That’s all, the work is over, the stretching of the sofa is completed – we put it in its proper place and use it along with other pieces of upholstered furniture.

This article describes the process of stretching a sofa-book, as one of the most difficult objects of work on changing upholstery and filler. The upholstery of an armchair, sofa and any other piece of upholstered furniture is carried out in almost the same way.

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