Welcome back! It’s day four of Re-upholstery 101. Are you seeing it? Are you beginning to get a glimpse of what the chair is going to look like finished? Fabulous isn’t it?!!!!
Yesterday we got the seat fabric all fitted and stapled down.
Today we are going to finish our chair!
Let’s go back to the arm cushions. These are going to be covered exactly the same way as the seat cushion. The biggest thing to remember is to center the same pattern on both cushions!
Take the two arm cushions that you took off and center them over the design that you want centered on your arm cushion. Then cut out the oval shapes making sure to cut them larger than your pattern pieces.
Go ahead and place your piece over the arm cushion - - again making sure you center your design both vertically and horizontally.
Take your staple gun and staple the sides of your fabric down. Make sure that the fabric is smooth over the top and still straight.
To do the top of the arm cushions, you will make little tucks and folds fitting the fabric around the shape of the cushion.
Then staple these edges down. Sometimes you can only do one fold, staple it, and then do the next fold. This sounds a little complicated, but it is actually very forgiving, so don’t be afraid of it. Remember, we will be going back and covering up all the staples.
Next, you are going to go back with your scissors and trim close to the staples all the way around - - just like you did with the seat cushion.
Now, you can really see what your finished chair is going to look like. We are almost done - - all we have left now is to cover up all those staples!
It’s looking good, but the edges are really messy!!
Remember all that cording that we pulled off on the first day? This is your no-sew option. You can buy a coordinating braided cording and use that instead of making your own cording. Just measure the cording you took off and buy the same amount (plus a little more just to be on the safe side!)
Remember how I said I would point out things that were not done correctly on this chair? Here is one of the big areas. The cording that you put on, will wrap around the legs and arms to cover up the gap between the fabric and the frame. It should not go over the leg as it does in the picture above.
Making Your Own Double Welted Self-Cording
This may look involved or complicated, but really it is quite easy - - I will attempt to explain it as easily as possible!
Cut enough to equal the length of the cording you took off - plus a bit extra.
This foot for your sewing machine is a life saver. It is a double welting foot. You may have to search a bit for one - - but without it, I’m not sure if/how it would be possible to make double welting. This is the bottom side of the foot. You can see that it has two channels for the cording to slide through. The needle will hit perfectly in the center of the two pieces of cording.
2. Measure out two pieces of cording the length of the cording you took off.
3. Take your first piece of cording and set it about 3/4” in on the left side of your fabric – on the wrong side of the fabric. Wrap the fabric around the cording - -you should have about 1/4” of fabric laying past the cording.
4. Place your second piece of cording snugly against your first piece, on top of the overlapping fabric.
5. Wrap the remainder of your fabric around the exposed cord.
6. Flip the entire piece over and set it under your double welting foot, making sure the pieces of cording are in the channels.
7. Start sewing and continue wrapping as you go. I can usually do about 6”-8” at a time and then I have to wrap the next section. It takes awhile, but it is well worth the effort!
8. Trim the excess fabric off the back of your sewn cording. You don’t want this hanging out when you put it on your piece. I’ve found that working with a piece that is larger is much easier than trying to fit it perfectly the first time.
Alright! Now that you have all your cording made it’s time to finish your chair! Pull out your hot glue gun and plug it in. Make sure you have extra glue sticks easily accessible because you don’t want to have to go searching for them once you get started!
Cut a clean edge on your cording - - this will be your starting point.
Choose a starting point that isn’t too close to the front - - a place where you can hide your seam. Put some hot glue on your piece of cording and start placing the cording right along the edge of your fabric covering up your staples.
You are going to go completely around the seat of your chair – wrapping up and around the leg and arm supports. Make sure you use plenty of glue and tuck the cording tight to the fabric and the frame.
Once you make it all the way around your chair, back to your starting point, cut a clean edge again so that your finished edge will tuck right next to your starting point.
That was easy – huh? Now all we have left is to do the same thing to the arm cushions. Start under the arm cushion – wrapping and gluing as you go around and once you get back to the starting point, make a clean cut so that the two edges but evenly and neatly together.
Notice how the cording finishes the chair? It gives it a very custom look.
Well, what do you think? Not so scary is it?
Have you gained enough confidence to give it a try yourself?
Now I just have one problem - - -where to put this fantastically cute chair!!! I love it so much, but I have not found a home for it yet in my house - - I know what Handsome Hubby is going to say….”sell it!” We’ll see!
I’ve tried to answer all your questions as you have left them, but if I missed one, please ask again! I’ve had a ton of fun doing this. I have some more complicated chairs that are just dying for a re-upholstery makeover. Maybe I will do them and have a Re-upholstery 201 week!!