dining chair upholstery tutorial

by | Jun 10, 2018 | All Things Home, Furniture Makeovers, Sewing, Tutorials, upholstery | 15 comments

I almost completely forgot that I left this chair makeover tutorial hanging after I shared how to make the slipcover for the seat!  I was traveling and visiting family and wasn’t reminded about part two until someone mentioned it on Instagram.  Anyway, I dusted off the video footage and got everything edited, so I could share how to strip and reupholster the back of a wood frame chair, like this one…

It doesn’t matter if your chair has a different shape.  If the back is framed in wood, this tutorial will work for you.

If you’re new to upholstery, this is actually a great project to start with, because you don’t have any tricky places where fabric panels meet.

Here are the supplies you’ll need…

And, here is the tutorial…

Here is a closer look at the finished back…

I’m so happy with how these chairs turned out.  They are sturdy and with a classic shape and now they are customized with a removable and washable slipcover.

(This picture is with the old paint color on the walls, but you get the idea how nice they look in the room…

Happy upholstering!


  1. Mel

    Thank you Marian! I have 14 restaurant chairs that have similar backs on them, and I have been dreading reupholstering them. Watching this video, I am now pretty confident that once I get all the staples and mauve vinyl off, the worst will be over.

    • Marian Parsons

      Oh, mauve vinyl! Yes, you can definitely improve on that! 😉

  2. Lisa

    Looks great Marian! It doesn’t seem as intimidating as I thought it would be. I think it might actually be something I could do. Thanks for the info and inspiration!! 🙂

    • Marian Parsons

      It’s definitely doable!

  3. Terry Cross

    OK so how do you get that gorgeous finish on the wood portion of your BEAUTIFUL chairs? Are they stripped down to the bare wood and then stained? Is it your Hemp Oil finish? Do tell!
    Have fun on your journey : )

  4. Marlene Stephenson

    Thank you so much this will certainly help me with a couple of old chairs i need to redo, i love that material.

  5. Sally

    Thank you for taking the time to do this tutorial. It takes some of the fear away!

  6. Mary

    Chairs are beautiful! I’ve had a còuple rugs similar to the one under your table. We have just redone our floors and I am once again rug shopping. Do you have a recommendation for the resource/style of this rug or one much like it? Also, do you have a preferred resource for area rugs?

  7. Karissa

    It would be helpful if you told what width the foam should be if you must replace it and told the size (depth) of the staples you use.

  8. JaneS

    I am unclear about how the double welting is applied. What happens to the seam allowance? How short do you trim and how do you insure it doesn’t show? Are you folding in under? I have chairs to do too. Thanks for the tutorials!

    • maureen hughes

      JaneS If you go to the site that she links for making the welting (above) , she says to glue the cut side down, or tack it down.

  9. Brenda Coffin

    Where can I find slip covers for dining chairs for purchase since I am not super creative?

  10. Joan

    Omg! This is incredible! I feel like I just watched a super hero leap from a tall building! The whole process is amazing!

  11. Chantal Bade

    Hello- getting ready to attempt my first upholstery project!!! Your tutorials are life savers and hope givers. One question I have is about your cool shears with the short blades, Do they have a specific name or brand? I haven’t been able to track them down and the spring loaded aspect is a must for me.
    Thank you!

  12. Victoria Vye

    Your chairs are beautiful. Thank you for the ideal material suggestion. I copied your idea for my dining chairs and found the same material for my ladder back chairs. They came back today from the upholsterer today. They are gorgeous, would have done them myself but pandemic work household required me to get them done. A fast turnaround was necessary but you have now inspired me to paint a hutch and chairs this summer. Thank you for the inspiration.


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Marian Parsons - Miss Mustard Seed

I’m Marian, aka Miss Mustard Seed, a wife, mother, paint enthusiast, lover of all things home and an entrepreneur, author, artist, designer, freelance writer & photographer.  READ MORE to learn more about me, my blog and my business…


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