4 Easy DIY Steps On How To Reupholster A Recliner Chair

Do you want to know how to reupholster a recliner chair in just four steps? Has your recliner chair reached its breaking point that it’s just too awkward to still let it stay in your living room and show to your guests? Well, you are not the only one, so to lend you and all the others a helping hand, we’ll talk about attaching new upholstery to an old chair in this article.

A recliner chair is a staple of almost every household living room in the world. They are so common that it doesn’t matter which continent you go to, whatever weather it is there, you’ll most likely spot one when you enter the house. Whether it’s a family house, an apartment, a condo and even villas, recliner chairs can fit almost on every set of furniture of any structure.

Recliner chairs have a history that goes all the way to the 1800s. From then until now, recliner chairs are made to last a huge span of time with sturdy frames that keep their structure firm. However, the upholstery, which is the most exposed part of the chair, can get damaged by wear and tear over time.


Steps In Reupholstering A Recliner Chair

Attaching new sets of upholstery to an older frame is a usual tactic for owners. They are those who buy high-value products and those who like to keep what they bought with their hard-earned money around. Whether you’re one of them, or you have a different reason, here are some steps you can carry out yourself to reupholster your recliner chair


Step #1: Pay the chair manufacturer a visit

Though there exist some customers who don’t remember from which store did they get a certain item, we hope you do remember where you got your recliner chair. It’s better too if you still have the receipt from the time you made your purchase. The first step in your reupholstering is to give that shop a visit.

You may have noticed this a long time ago, but recliner chairs from the same and especially different brands use specific sloping, sizing and shaping for each item to make them unique. To have the most fitted foams for your chair, you might as well purchase them from the same place.

If you want to go the extra mile than just replacing the upholstery with a new but same design, you can also ask the shop to cut some personalized foams with the given dimension of your recliner chair. This might cost you some extra bucks but your chair is guaranteed to look way better than before.

If you’re confident, you can opt-out of getting the original manufacturer to make the foams for you and do them yourself. You can also pick your design, color, and texture of the fabric to cover the chair later on. Just make sure you take the exact dimensions of the chair before shopping and still add some allowance to the measurements.


Step #2: Remove the previous upholstery from your recliner chair

This step will be a bit tricky if it’s your first time, but we assure you that it is nowhere impossible. First, you need to check if the manufacturer sewed the foam and fabric into the frame or if he/she used staples. It’ll be a different process for each of these attachments.

Sewn upholstery will take a lot of your patience. You’ll have to cut and untangle each loop and sections one by one until all the fabric and foam comes off. For staples, you’re going to need either a hammer or pliers to pluck each piece off the frame.


Step #3: Fit the new foam into the recliner chair

After removing all the previous upholstery parts from your recliner chair, make sure you polish it properly. You can use a solvent that’s suitable to the adhesive used to attach it which you’ll find out from the manufacturer. We also recommend that you smoothen the frame using sandpaper.

Next, take the new set of foams you obtained and place them respectively on the frame. The foam of the upholstery is usually attached with glue so you can do the same, with the same glue used initially by the manufacturer. Make sure you don’t apply too much of it though lest the foam ends up crumpled and deformed.

Let the glue dry on the frame. In this process, make sure the chair doesn’t get moved so the foams don’t end up crooked.


Step #4: Clamp the fabric on the corners and fold accordingly

Cut your fabric first to approximate the shape and form of the recliner chair’s frame. Starting with the corners, staple the fabric in place. Finish up folding the upper part and back support of the chair, adding your preferred designs along the way.

On the reclining or folding parts, lay the fabric on the foam first then fold the chair and then clamp it in place. This is to make sure that you don’t underestimate the fabric length and cover the moving parts well. Fold the extra fabric and follow the same procedure on all the parts of the chair.



There’s much more to knowing how to reupholster a recliner chair than just gluing parts together. You have to properly learn how the moving parts move the others as well. After all, you’re replacing the upholstery to make the chair look new and feel better.

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