Today I am sharing how to reupholster a couch without sewing! Last year I shared the most insane project I have ever done, a DIY couch. I sawzalled an existing couch in half and removed two feet and then assembled it back together finishing it off with new upholstery. A couple weekends ago, I decided to reupholster it again with an old Pottery Barn slip cover that was in the bottom of my closet.
how to reupholster a couch – “the before”
In case you are new to our blog, this is what the couch looked like after I sawzalled it in half.
Kind of crazy right? Well this little o’l couch is getting a new look, again.
Do you love the look of slip covers but hate all the wrinkles and mess? The one piece slipcovers that you buy as is are beautiful as long as you don’t sit on the furniture.
Do you know what I am talking about?
They come in one size and usually, you have excessive amounts of fabric tucked everywhere. Drives me crazy! So my solution was to re-use the existing large one piece slip cover and cut it to size and staple/nail it to the couch.
how to reupholster a couch – staple/nail split cover
First, drape your slip cover over your piece of furniture.
Next, cut the excessive fabric (on the floor) off but be sure to not cut the pleated part. You will want to save the pleated part to re-staple to the couch along the bottom edge.
Now it’s time to cut out the middle piece. I decided to cut straight across being sure to leave enough fabric to cover the back and sides of the couch.
Don’t worry, this works!
How to Reupholster a couch without removing the fabric
This is such a great way to reupholster a couch without removing the fabric first. There is no need to remove the old fabric.
Now, simply tuck your fabric and staple with your hand powered staple gun. I used a compressor and heavy duty staple gun with 1/4″ staples. Be sure to staple to the wood part/frame of the sofa.
Try to staple as close to the bottom and up underneath in order to hide the staple.
I cut a piece of fabric (from the slip cover excess) to cover the front and stapled. I chose to leave the arms of the couch “loose” simply because I wanted a casual look. You can always staple the fabric around the arms to give it a more tailored look. It just depends what look you want. The staple gun is at your disposal! If you make a mistake or don’t like it, just get a hammer and screwdriver and pry out the staple. That is the beauty of a DIY sofa upholstery project, you can change things as you go if you do not like it.
Don’t worry about getting it perfect. You will be able to cover the edges with the existing pleated skirt that you cut off earlier. See below how I stapled the skirt back on the couch. This gives the couch a finished look.
I tried to staple where the staples wouldn’t be seen but a couple do show. You can purchase roping or ribbon in the fabric store and use stitch witchery to adhere to the slipcover if you want to hide the staples. For me, they are hardly noticeable.
Of course if you want it perfect, you will need to invest hundreds of dollars and pay to have it professionally upholstered. For me, that wasn’t an option. I think the couch recovered in a camel covered slip cover fits right in with our newly renovated modern cottage pool house.
how to reupholster a couch – cushions
For the cushion, I used the remaining fabric that I had cut off in the beginning and sewed the ends together and used velcro to close the seam. I ran out of zippers and velcro is what I had so that is what I used. I may sew a zipper on the cushion cover at some point.
Be sure to also check out my how to reupholster a chair tutorial too. It’s a new sew tutorial and if I can do it, anyone can do it.
The beautiful thing about this reupholster sofa project is I re-used a slipcover that cost over $300 and I can now sit on this couch without the fabric moving and looking messy. In my book, it was successful. A fresh new look for a couch that use to be two feet longer for zero money! This project only took me two hours and seriously, learning how to reupholster a couch is very easy.
Get yourself a small compressor and heavy duty staple gun (that works with a compressor), some fabric and get busy! Be sure to check out the rest of our pool house makeover and diy planked wall in this space. If you take a peak at the before pictures of this pool house, it’s hard to believe it’s the same space. It’s come a long way!