How to Reupholster a Rocking Chair: Pt 2

March 1, 2011

Now we are going to get to making this thing pretty, ok?  I am going to be doing a bit of picture overload to give you as much detail as I can.  Each chair will be different, but my hopes is that in seeing how and why I did some things, you will receive the confidence you need to tackle your own chair.  You are strong and you can do it!  The biggest change we made, is that where this chair was originally put together with a GAZILLION nails, we used mostly staples.  I will show you where we used nails, but otherwise we used staples.

Remember where we left off with all those pretty coils popping out at us?  That is where we started in the operation.  We decided to cover the springs with batting to start with.  We covered this the same way you would any chair… starting with the middle of each side, stapling there and working out to the sides.  We trimmed around the staples last.

Now, using your old fabric pieces that you took off the chair (remember we kept them, RIIGHHTT??), cut new fabric pieces.  We had to cut 3 pieces… the cushion, the back front and the back of the back.

I suggest leaving a little extra room all around the fabric piece.  We added A LOT of extra cushion to this chair and it was a good thing we had extra fabric. We were quite tight, in fact, in some places.  After we cut our foam to size for the seat we attached the fabric using staples on top of the foam starting at the front middle and then moving to the back of the chair.

As you can see, the front had a harsh edge on it when we finished attaching the front and back of the seat fabric.  So, before we attached the sides, we decided to add some batting in that area to soften it up a bit.

After attaching the sides, we trimmed up the back corners and made a nice fold. Then we trimmed the fabric all the way around.

We then moved on to the seat back.  This time we did a layer of foam, then batting, and then fabric.

Taking careful note on how the chair was originally made by looking back on ALL those pictures we took when we were taking it apart, we positioned the fabric and such the same way it was originally.  The bottom of the back was tucked back behind the chair and attached on the bottom.

We started by first attaching the top of the fabric making sure we had a smooth curve on the top of the chair.  And then attaching the bottom.

Then, we attached the sides all the way to the top corner.  The hard part was making sure the corner looked nice and neat… and well… I’m a perfectionist… and so…


I tried and tried and tried… and finally!

I was satisfied.  Next, we finished attaching the sides.

We attached the cording with a hot glue gun on all the places we could see staples.

Lastly, we attached the back.  The fabric shop introduced us to this fabulous product with sharp teeth and bendy stuff (I think that is the technical description) to use for this part.  We started by nailing it down across the top in every other hole.

Every other seemed sufficient to us!  You be your own judge.  Next, we tucked the fabric in and bended down the bendy (technical) stuff on top of it like so…

Fold the fabric back down and you get a clean fold.  We hammered it down again after we folded the fabric down to give it a crisp edge.

We treated the sides the same way… trimming the fabric along the way and then we folded and nailed down the bottom edge.




And VOILA!  She’s gorgeous!

I LOVE IT!!  What a great fabric choice.  She has already been used and loved by many.  And she is SOOO comfy!  This was so much fun to do for and with my sweet friend.  It is good to have a set of extra hands, but it really was a lot less scary than I had ever thought it would be.  Ya’ll should totally try it!

Ta for now!

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9 Responses to How to Reupholster a Rocking Chair: Pt 2

  1. JoAnna Wilkey on June 8, 2011 at 7:05 pm

    HOWDY!!!!!!!!!! As we say in South Carolina. I love what you did with the rocker. I have one I need to tackle. I got brave last week and did 4 kitchen chairs for a dining room set I was selling. With the help of a tutorial on line. I did it! I really amazed myself. I’m a antique dealer and if I can restore some pieces I may be able to stay in business in the bad economy. I appreciate all the pictures. You sound like a gem and very weel loved by those you meet. God Bless you!, JoAnna Wilkey

    • dixiemango on June 8, 2011 at 9:25 pm

      Well, YEEE HAWWW! Hahaha. Welcome! I would love to see some pictures of what you have done. Show and tell is my fav. Thanks for stopping in. God bless you back, friend!

  2. Lori P on March 2, 2011 at 3:05 pm

    Wow! It looks fantastic! Great job!

  3. Patty Milburn on March 1, 2011 at 9:39 pm

    WOW! What a beauty! I can’t wait to put myself in that chair tomorrow……………. Now I just might tackle covering the two extra chairs in the dining room…..or might have to import a you to do it for me!

    • dixiemango on March 2, 2011 at 4:09 am

      Ha! I’m totally importable! Any excuse to come to the farm!

  4. michele on March 1, 2011 at 9:14 pm

    You are the BESTEST EVER! Thank you so much for all your hard work… I truly thought you would add a comment to the pictures of you folding the corners; something having to do with OCD, but perfectionist sounds better! You are amazing. I am blessed beyond what I deserve to have such a sweet angel in my life and in the life of my family! You are so loved!

    • dixiemango on March 2, 2011 at 4:10 am

      You make it easy, my friend! I love you back… and to talk about angels… you, my dear are one of the best!

  5. Andi on March 1, 2011 at 8:58 pm

    The chair looks great! I have always wanted to try this and you make it seem doable. Thanks for the step-by-steps photos!

    • dixiemango on March 2, 2011 at 4:10 am

      Totally doable, Andi! You should do it… do it, do it, do it!

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