Reupholster: Reupholster Definition & Meaning – Merriam-Webster

Reupholster Definition & Meaning – Merriam-Webster




transitive verb

: to cover (something, such as a piece of furniture) with new upholstery

reupholstered the old couch

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web

Gonzales’ father owned a thrift store and taught her how to reupholster old furniture., 22 May 2022

Don’t reupholster it if the piece won’t last as long as the new fabric.

Washington Post, 3 May 2022

Her daughter, Ellen, was inspired by a crisp black-and-brown Clarence House fabric that Zelda once used to reupholster a sofa in the sunroom.

New York Times, 1 Dec. 2021

The brand also has plans for LoveShackFancy wallpaper and fabrics by the yard, so that people can reupholster furniture using the label’s signature prints.

Los Angeles Times, 15 Dec. 2020

In fact, this year 1stDibs has seen a sharp increase—28%—in sales of high-quality vintage and antique furniture pieces that customers are buying with the intent to reupholster.

—Michelle Slatalla, WSJ, 21 Oct. 2020

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word ‘reupholster. ‘ Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1856, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler

The first known use of reupholster was
in 1856

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“Reupholster.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Jul. 2023.

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How to Reupholster Things Yourself — DIY Reupholstery Vs. Recovering

On TV, the pros make reupholstering look easy. All you need to do is binge-watch HGTV and you got this… right? It’s not that simple. While it is possible for beginners to handle some small reupholstery projects, you run the risk of seriously messing up a piece of furniture for jobs that are more complicated. (That heirloom piece passed down from your great grandmother? Forget about it.) Here’s how to know when it’s okay to DIY, and when to call in a pro (plus how to find one), according to experts.

Recovering vs. Reupholstering

First, it’s important to understand the difference between recovering and reupholstering. Recovering is simply putting new fabric over the old fabric. “This is a way to cut corners,” says Diane Montgomery, owner of Coventry Lane Upholstery in Nashville. “We find a lot of people who recover, and in turn, I have to take all those layers off [when I reupholster].” When you’re reupholstering an item, on the other hand, you’re completely replacing the fabric and possibly installing new foam or other inserts.

View full post on Instagram

The Biggest Misconception About Reupholstering

What most people get wrong is thinking it’s easy, says Montgomery. “There have been a lot of times where I’ve had clients bring me something they attempted,” she says. You can find many reupholstering videos on YouTube with experts who make the process seem like a cinch, yet when you’ve never done it before, it can end being much more difficult than you expected.

When It’s Okay to DIY

Basic “whack and tack” jobs, where you’re just pulling fabric around a surface wrapped in padding and stapling it in place, are a great place to start, says Jenna Pilant, owner of Homebird Upholstery in San Diego. Dining room chairs with drop seats (like the one in the above video) are a pretty doable reupholstering project for beginners. Since the seats are usually square, it only involves figuring out how to fold the corners, says Montgomery.

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Another attainable project is a simple, covered headboard. “It’s kind of like wrapping a present,” says Montgomery. You can make one by getting a piece of plywood cut to the size you want at Home Depot, adding padding to it, and wrapping and stapling your fabric around it.

When you’re opting to DIY, avoid using thick fabric like leather and vinyl, because they can be very difficult to fold, Montgomery advises.

Simone Madeo//Getty Images

When to Call a Pro

Anything that requires “full upholstery” (such as club chairs, ottomans, and sofas, especially those featuring tufting) is too complicated for a beginner to take on if you want the result to look professional. The exception to this: If you’re working on something inexpensive with the goal of simply learning how. “If you got a chair at Goodwill and don’t choose an expensive fabric, and it’s meant to teach you a skill, that’s one thing,” says Montgomery, “but if it’s a family heirloom with upholstered back and arms, seek the help of a professional.” Similarly, if your piece has any foundation issues—a wobbly frame or leg—take it to an expert.

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A lot of upholsterers will sell fabric; however, Pilant says you shouldn’t be afraid of sourcing your own fabrics elsewhere (after finding out the exact yardage from the upholsterer you’ve hired).

Before choosing to work with an upholsterer, ask your friends who they recommend. Sites like Thumbtack and the National Upholstery Association can also help you with your search. If you find someone you might want to work with, ask if you can speak with a few of their former clients and visit their shop to see items they’ve done in person. “You need to be sure that what you’re paying for is at the standard level you’re expecting,” says Montgomery.

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Furniture upholstery in Kazan | The price of the banner is from 500 rubles.

Repair of upholstered furniture

Other services

Furniture upholstery

If your furniture has lost its functionality and beautiful appearance, then you need upholstery replacement and repair. Upholstery and repair of furniture is not an easy task. In this regard, furniture upholstery should be carried out by highly qualified craftsmen. By contacting BestMebel, you will receive a full range of furniture upholstery and repair services quickly and efficiently. Our professionals will give your upholstered furniture a new life, and also allow the owners to enjoy their beautiful appearance for many years, saving on the purchase of a new sofa or armchair.

In addition, we can perform other types of work:

  • Replacement of the filler
  • Upholstery of armrests
  • Upholstery of seats
  • Tailoring of covers
  • Upholstery in artificial eco-leather
  • 90 017 Complete repair of a computer chair

Furniture repair in Kazan

no matter how difficult the repair is, we will always do everything so that your furniture will look even better. Turning to us, you will receive high-quality and competently provided furniture upholstery service at competitive prices. Our workshop means reasonable prices and efficiency, besides, all the work will be done in the shortest possible time. Since our company believes that any business is an art, it should give pleasure not only to customers, but also to the performers themselves.

Upholstery and furniture restoration in Kazan

Our experienced craftsmen in the field of upholstery, upholstery and furniture repair have been engaged in far more than one year. During such a period of time, they have managed to master certain upholstery skills, as well as the latest production technologies, with a variety of finishing materials and designs of various configurations. Therefore, if you need upholstery replacement and repair, please contact our company. We will do everything in the best way, in the shortest possible time, taking into account all your requirements and wishes.

Prices for upholstery and furniture repair

Prices for upholstery of beds

Double bed upholstery 13000 Single bed upholstery 7000 Upholstery beds with edge 10000 Children’s bed upholstery 5000 Headboard upholstery 8000 Headboard upholstery with carriage tie 10000

90 002

Prices for sofa upholstery

900 63

Double sofa upholstery 12500
Upholstery for a three-seater sofa 13000
Upholstery for a four-seater sofa 16660
Sofa upholstery with ottoman 18250
Corner sofa upholstery 25000 900 60
Upholstery of leather sofas 20000
Upholstery of a sofa with leatherette 13000
Upholstery sofa beds 11800
U-shaped sofa upholstery 28700
Kitchen sofa upholstery 6200
Sofa upholstery click klack 11200
Sofa upholstery book 13200

90 059 4000

Leather chair upholstery 9 0060

Seat armrest padding 1000
Seat and back upholstery 2000
Computer chair upholstery 2300
Office chair upholstery
Soft chair upholstery 6637
Bed chair upholstery 6955
Classic chair upholstery 8280
Rocking chair upholstery 4140
Manager seat upholstery 4500
Executive seat upholstery 6800
Upholstery of the Soviet chair 4800

Prices for upholstery of seats

900 63

Classic chair upholstery 2760
Upholstery of chairs without a back 690
Upholstery of chairs with a back 690
Upholstery of metal chairs 18 00
Chair-chair upholstery 2782
Stool upholstery 690
Kitchen chair upholstery 1800
Bar stool upholstery 1200
Upholstery of Viennese chairs 1000
Upholstery of wooden chairs 1500
Upholstery of seats and backs of chairs 650
Upholstery of leather chairs 3000

Chair upholstery prices


Upholstery and upholstery at home

At the request of many, we have introduced furniture upholstery at home. The entire upholstery process will be carried out at the customer’s home. The procedure will be divided into several stages, depending on the complexity of the implementation.

In addition to the upholstery itself, we also provide other related services for the repair and restoration of furniture. We are engaged in repairing and replacing sofa mechanisms, more about this in the corresponding menu category.

Partial reupholstery

Sometimes it is not necessary to completely reupholster the furniture, it is enough to partially renew the necessary areas, eliminating the damaged parts of the furniture. Furniture upholstery is a great opportunity not only to extend the service life, but also to avoid additional expenses for a new purchase.

How much does it cost to reupholster furniture

The amount of furniture reupholstery is calculated individually for each new client, since the cost will depend on some parameters:

  • additional services (painting, change of PPU, adjustment of the transformation mechanism)
  • How furniture is delivered

    Transportation can be carried out both by our delivery service and by your own means. Details should be obtained from our managers.

    If you decide to bring furniture to our company in a wealthy way, you need to discuss this with our employees in advance about the reception.

    What are the terms of furniture upholstery

    Furniture upholstery is carried out on average from 2 to 10 working days, it all depends on the complexity of the model, and on the availability of upholstery fabric that you choose.

    How we work with customers

    Upholstery fabrics

    Our workshop offers an extensive catalog of upholstery fabrics. Available in more than 100 models and 1000 shades of color.

    Velours Jacquard Chenille Mat Leatherette Flock Ik suede Ik wool

    Get a quote from a photo

    Submit a photo and you’ll get a quote right away.

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    Promotions and discounts

    Discount for newcomers Discount for beneficiaries Hot Monday Free delivery Pillows as a gift

    Reviews about furniture reupholstering ★


    I decided to update the sofa and reupholster the furniture at home. The workshop went to a meeting, they arrived the next day, showed all the samples of furniture fabrics, and made a calculation for the sofa upholstery. I am very satisfied with the result of the new sofa, I will recommend it. Thank you very much.



    I have a small cafe, the chairs are constantly spoiled, someone will tear or freeze. Thus, the appearance of the cafe deteriorates, so we decided to order reupholstering of chairs. I am very satisfied with everything, everything was done on time specified in the contract, special thanks to the manager.



    and in the office to update the exterior interior, and at the same time change the upholstery of guest sofas. We ordered the upholstery of sofas in Best Furniture, and we were not disappointed with the choice. We signed a contract and agreed on terms. The quality of the sofas is excellent, the fabric is high quality, thank you for your cooperation. 9I ordered furniture upholstery at home, done in a couple of visits, it took about a week for everything. I am satisfied with the quality of the work done, I can safely advise.

    upholstery. Good and large selection of fabrics, many colors and types. I am very satisfied with the timing and most importantly the price.


    Searched Professional Masters for the Making IMPLE Furniture, and found. We had a sofa, and we wanted to make two chairs and an ottoman for it, in the same style as the sofa. Made in a couple of weeks, the quality is excellent, I really liked the fabric samples, I will recommend it to everyone.

    Service area

    Our workshop is ready to repair your furniture from any part of the city and nearby areas.

    How to reupholster a sofa – step by step instructions with a photo, reupholstering a sofa with your own hands

    If, for example, household appliances have become unusable, most often it is easier to replace them than to repair them. If the external component of the furniture has become unusable, then there is a chance to update it with not the most difficult and costly means. For the most part, it is enough to change the upholstery to restore the look and properties of all furniture. In the article we will tell you how to reupholster a sofa yourself, how to choose the right materials and filler, describe the features of this process and give step-by-step instructions for reupholstering.

    Benefits of do-it-yourself sofa upholstery

    It is better to drag a sofa with a high-quality base than to replace it with a modern analogue. Whatever one may say, very reliable mechanisms were made earlier that could serve the owner and his children / grandchildren for many years.

    Obvious bonuses of self-tightening:

    • Unlimited in design. You do everything yourself, and therefore you can easily choose any elements exclusively to your liking. Color, material, armrests, other details – all this is up to you.
    • Possibility to repair internal elements. In addition to the constriction itself, it is possible to level out the shortcomings of the frame or spring block that have formed over the years of use.
      Saving money. When it is possible to reupholster the sofa yourself, you save money, because new furniture will cost more anyway.
    • Preservation of a favorite corner. You don’t need to throw away a sofa that is comfortable and suits you in all respects – just follow all the recommendations for a step-by-step reupholstery.

    Damage and repairs

    Of course, all damage can be different: from minor to more complex. This depends on the specific scope of work.

    • Fabric damaged

      Usually such deformations occur over time of operation or due to certain conditions, for example, the cat scratched all the armrests. If there are no other malfunctions like dips or protruding parts, then you can simply replace the upholstery.

    • Presence of sagging places

      In this case, the components that are responsible for the formation of the upholstered part of the furniture have worn out – that is, mainly the filler. Then it will be necessary to change the synthetic winterizer or another layer, sometimes – to repair the spring block. If, with all this, the upholstery has been preserved normally, it can simply be washed without the need for replacement.

    • The bottom of the seat is pierced

      The bottom of the frame can be pressed through due to high loads. Sometimes the reason for this is the material made of this element – fiberboard. To correct the malfunction, it is worth disassembling everything, getting the spring part, changing the fiberboard. Replacement option – plywood.

    • Frame damaged

      Complicated failure when the frame bars are cracked. In this case, the repair is quite complicated: it will be necessary to disassemble everything, replace the bars, then restore everything. A complete reupholstering of the sofa will be required when new furniture is assembled using the old parts as well.

    Material selection

    Before you pull the sofa yourself, you need to decide what materials you will use. This applies primarily to upholstery and filler.


    • Polyurethane foam is a synthetic foam structure that can be of varying degrees of firmness, and generally adapt to the shape of the body during relaxation. Inexpensive types of filler lose their shape over time.
    • Sintepon is usually combined with other materials, such as polyurethane foam. All because of its insufficient rigidity – it is easily squeezed through, and therefore it becomes uncomfortable to sleep exclusively on a padding polyester over time. In its pure form, it is more suitable for pillows than as a sofa filler.
    • Struttofiber, which is also called “non-woven independent springs.” The material repeats the anatomical features of the user, is resistant to moisture, breathable, hypoallergenic.
    • High Density Felt is a natural felted version of the filler. It is not used in its pure form, but only in combination with other materials. It has good properties of hypoallergenicity, thermoregulation. Requires care in care to prevent the appearance of mold, insects.
    • Foam rubber is considered the most inexpensive and affordable filler, but crumbles over time. Well suited for filling armrests or furniture completely, provided it is used infrequently.

    Advice. To fill the sofa, it is best to combine several materials. A good option is struttofiber + felt + polyurethane foam.

    Upholstery materials

    • Velor is velvety in appearance and slightly shiny. It is easy to wash and vacuum. The material is well ventilated, quite durable and soft.
    • Flock is chosen by those who have pets. All because of its resistance to claws, easy washing, hypoallergenicity. Good for upholstery for children’s furniture.
    • Jacquard emphasizes the luxury of the product. Yes, upholstery is more expensive, but it allows you to get a great look of the product. In care, you should be careful: do not use aggressive detergents, acids, protect the sofa from direct sunlight.
    • Natural tapestry with a three-dimensional pattern on the surface is highly durable, easy to clean, pleasant to the touch.
    • Leather is not the most practical upholstery option and is more suitable for office sofas or furniture that is used infrequently and is more of an interior item than a full-fledged sleeping place.
    • Scotchgard is considered a modern upholstery option. Any pattern can be applied to it – it is the originality of the material that users highly appreciate. Easy to wash, but durable as bed linen (wash – no more than 40 degrees). Often the material is used as a cape.

    Advice. One of the most important conditions for the durability of a sofa is the quality of the upholstery. Therefore, when choosing, consider not only the price of the material, but also the conditions of use: frequency, the presence of children and pets.

    How to reupholster a sofa at home: step by step instructions

    All work on the upholstery of the sofa can be divided into several stages: calculate the materials, prepare the tools, remove the upholstery material, remove the old filler, and so on. Let’s take a closer look at each of them.

    Step 1. Calculate the required amount of material

    The volume of the filler is easier to calculate, for this you need the dimensions of the sofa. To calculate the amount of upholstery, it is important to consider several nuances:

    • Specify the width of the upholstery roll. If this parameter is not enough for some part of the sofa, then pieces of upholstery will need to be sewn together.
    • Do not ignore the size of the overlap of the material on the frame – it can reach up to 20 centimeters. The upholstery is fastened to the sofa with special brackets.
    • It’s better to play it safe and take into account the double parameters of height and width, because it’s easier to remove the leftovers than to connect the pieces that weren’t enough.
    • For patterned upholstery, it is important to choose the right pattern, and in this case, material consumption is most often increased.

    Step 2: Prepare the tool

    When removing old upholstery, you cannot do without at least a clerical knife, scissors, a hammer, a screwdriver, a construction / furniture stapler, a set of open-end wrenches.

    Step 3: Remove upholstery/filling

    The upholstery material is removed with a clerical knife. By the way, if carefully removed, it can be used to calculate the amount of new tissue. Remember that often the upholstery is attached with staples to the back of the sofa, and removing each of them is problematic even for a specialist. Therefore, sometimes it is easier to tear the fabric out of the staples, and then gently drive them back into the wood.

    Even if you really want to save on replacing the filler, it is better to dispose of it. Even the highest quality materials, over the years of use, accumulate dust and dirt, microbes, cake and sag.

    Step 4: Inspect structure for problem areas

    The sofa is in pieces. This stage is especially important when you are dealing with rather old furniture. It is important to notice fasteners and mechanisms, the integrity or functioning of which is impaired. To do this, inspect the wooden parts – if damaged, they will need to be replaced with the same ones. Also lubricate the places where the metal touches with silicone – this way you can get rid of the squeak.

    Step 5: Cut and fasten the new material and core

    First you need to fix the upholstery to the wooden base.

    Before that, we mount the filler. If several layers are planned, then it is especially important to fix them with glue – a special, odorless one. Such a layer of filling is fixed with brackets – perpendicular to the plane of the wooden beams for good adhesion.

    For the correct cutting of the new material, you must either take measurements from the old upholstery, or measure the parameters for the filler that has been fixed. The last option is the most accurate. When cutting the material, leave a margin of 2-4 centimeters in case of an error. After preparing the cutting, the covers must be put on the parts and straightened to the maximum. The seams of the cover should be parallel to the edges of the parts, the corners should be in contact with the corners of the frame. Next, the cover is fastened with staples starting from the middle – this way it will be possible to remove excess fabric without visible defects, sewing the edges manually, for example.

    Step 6. Assemble the sofa

    This process occurs in reverse order. That is, at the end, the back and seat are assembled. Before assembly, inspect all the details again: fabric, bonded structure, individual parts.

    Stage 7 Decoration

    An optional, but important step for those who start with small repairs and end up with large-scale work with updating the entire room.

    If the sofa is already stretched and looks like new, you can update the area around the furniture with “small losses”. For example, change the wallpaper, decorate the wall with photo wallpapers or picturesque prints.

    Picturesque prints are also appropriate on pillows. The easiest way is to replace the covers with new ones, contrasting in comparison with the main upholstery of the sofa. Moreover, brighter solutions are located in the center of the sofa, neutral ones – on the side.

    Constriction features: what to look for

    Upholstery fastening quality. The most important thing when reupholstering furniture is how secure the upholstery is. The fabric should not be too tight, but not loose. To check the correctness of the manipulations performed, press on the material with your hand: if everything is done correctly, then the fabric is pressed through without effort and returns to its original position. In the presence of squeaks and crackles, the upholstery is stretched too tightly, and therefore there is a high risk of damage over time.

    There are also nuances when hauling corner, spring, leather sofas. More about them:

    Corner sofa. Here it is very important to correctly combine the pattern. The marking of the upholstery material starts from one of the edges – to the opposite. First, sheathe the corner, then the bed, and lastly, the back.

    Spring sofa. We need a supply of cloth here. Indeed, it is often necessary to put an additional layer of fabric between the metal frame and the fine upholstery. Such a layer minimizes the risk of tearing the upholstery on both sides of the sofa, where there is no soft filling layer.

    Leather sofa. If the upholstery material is genuine leather, then it is important to consider a few points:

    • fabric thickness – no more than 1.5 mm for greater elasticity and to reduce the risk of cracks in the places of deflection;
    • upholstery with wet leather is excluded – the fabric will shrink when dried;
    • do not use needles / pins to temporarily fix the fabric – holes in the skin are not tightened;
    • to sew the skin, you need to lubricate the foot of the sewing machine with petroleum jelly – so the material will be protected from tearing, and the stitching itself will be faster;
    • The seam allowance runs the risk of rolling when stretched. To prevent these places, you need to iron them through cheesecloth.

    Replacement parts

    After removing the old cover, you can find a lot of damage, which, of course, must be corrected for the cleanliness of all work. Here are some of them:

    • Frame beams. If this part of the sofa is cracked, it needs to be replaced. An important detail – the new tree must be dry, without cracks and bark, with an even structure. Material with defects will quickly burst, raw material will dry out and warp. The lock saw, which usually fixes the old beams, is best repeated by ordering from a carpenter or by doing it yourself. Soak the joints of the new beams with PVA before joining.
    • MDF parts. Usually these are the jumpers of the seat / back frame, which can break during operation. To replace, cut out new parts in the same dimensions as the old ones, or order them from a furniture workshop. A life hack for a trouble-free further replacement of such parts: it is better to make jumpers separate. Fastening is carried out with a pneumatic stapler / nails.
    • Springs. It happens that bursting springs can be found in sofas over time. The result of this deformation is poor cushioning characteristics of the furniture and the risk of cuts / injuries. Replacing one or more damaged springs is an option, but does not rule out re-breakage. It is much more rational in this case to completely replace the spring blocks.
    • Seat belts. Sometimes thick bands are used as belts in chairs. Typically, the backs/seats use tightly woven straps with foam overlaid. And although they are torn infrequently, it is worth knowing that in the event of a defect, any strong belts with dense weaving of at least 6-7 centimeters in width will fit for replacement.
    • Foam. The foam rubber defect is manifested in its compressed state. The fact that in old sofas the filler becomes obsolete is normal: any kind of foam rubber can withstand a certain amount of compression, after which it is able to restore its shape.