How to Reupholster a Leather Dining Chair With Fabric

Are you ready to give your leather dining chair a fresh new look?

In this article, we’ll show you how to reupholster it with fabric. You’ll learn how to choose the right fabric, remove the old leather upholstery, prepare the chair frame, and measure and cut the new fabric.

We’ll guide you through the process of upholstering the seat and backrest, attaching the new fabric to the chair frame, and adding those finishing touches.

Get ready to transform your dining chair in no time!

Choosing the Right Fabric

You’ll need to consider the durability and color of the fabric when choosing the right one for your leather dining chair. Fabric selection is an important aspect of reupholstering your chair as it can greatly impact its overall appearance and lifespan.

When it comes to durability, you want to choose a fabric that is strong and resistant to wear and tear. Look for fabrics that are made from high-quality materials such as polyester or nylon, as they tend to be more durable.

Additionally, consider the color coordination of the fabric with the rest of your dining room. You want the fabric to complement the existing color scheme and style of your space. Take into account the color of the chair frame, the wall paint, and other furniture pieces. Opt for a fabric color that harmonizes well with these elements.

It is also a good idea to choose a fabric that is easy to clean and maintain, especially if you have young children or pets.

Removing the Old Leather Upholstery

To start, carefully peel away the old upholstery from the chair frame. Begin by locating the seams and using a seam ripper to undo the stitching. Take your time and be gentle to avoid damaging the leather.

Once the stitching is removed, you can start peeling the leather away from the frame. Use a flathead screwdriver or a putty knife to gently pry the leather away from the staples or tacks holding it in place. This process may require some patience, as the leather can be stubborn at times.

When stripping leather from a chair, it is important to preserve the leather as much as possible. Avoid using excessive force or sharp tools that may cause tears or scratches. If the leather is in good condition, you can save it for future use or repurposing. Simply fold it neatly and store it in a safe place.

Preparing the Chair Frame

When preparing the chair frame, it’s important to inspect it for any damage or loose parts. This step is crucial to ensure the stability and longevity of the chair. Start by carefully examining the frame for any cracks, splits, or broken joints. If you notice any damage, you will need to repair it before proceeding with the reupholstering process. Additionally, check for any loose screws or bolts and tighten them as necessary.

To help you understand the importance of this step, here’s a table that outlines the potential issues you may encounter during chair frame inspection:

Issue Description Solution
Cracks or splits Damage to the frame causing instability Repair with wood glue or reinforcements
Broken joints Separation of frame elements Reinforce with brackets or dowels
Loose screws/bolts Weak connections between frame components Tighten screws or replace with longer ones

Once you have addressed any damage or loose parts, you can move on to refinishing the chair frame if desired. This step involves sanding down the existing finish, applying a new stain or paint, and sealing it with a protective coat. Refinishing the frame can give your chair a fresh look and enhance its overall appearance.

Measuring and Cutting the New Fabric

Once you have measured and cut the new material, be sure to double-check the dimensions before moving on to the next step. This is a crucial step to ensure that your fabric fits properly and looks seamless on your dining chair.

When it comes to fabric selection, consider the style and color scheme of your dining room. Opt for a durable upholstery fabric that is easy to clean and maintain.

Now, let’s talk about the cutting technique. Here are three important things to keep in mind:

  • Use sharp fabric scissors to ensure clean and precise cuts. Dull scissors can lead to jagged edges and uneven lines.
  • Take your time and cut slowly along your measured lines. Rushing can result in mistakes and wasted fabric.
  • If your fabric has a pattern, make sure you align it correctly before cutting. This will ensure a visually appealing finished product.

By following these tips, you can achieve a professional-looking reupholstered dining chair that perfectly complements your decor.

So take your time, choose the right fabric, and cut with precision for a stunning result.

Upholstering the Seat and Backrest

When upholstering the seat and backrest of your dining chair, it’s important to choose a suitable fabric. This fabric should not only match your style but also provide durability and comfort. Consider factors such as the color, pattern, and texture of the fabric. Additionally, think about its resistance to stains and wear.

Once you have chosen the fabric, secure it to the seat and backrest using staples or upholstery tacks. Make sure to pull it tightly for a smooth and professional finish.

Choosing Suitable Fabric

Before you begin reupholstering your leather dining chair, make sure to choose a fabric that is suitable for your desired style and durability.

When it comes to fabric types, there are several options to consider. One popular choice is cotton, which is known for its softness and breathability. Another option is polyester, which offers durability and resistance to wrinkling. If you prefer a more luxurious feel, velvet is a great choice, as it adds elegance to any dining space.

As for color options, the possibilities are endless. You can opt for neutral shades like beige or gray for a timeless look, or go bold with vibrant colors like red or blue to make a statement.

Ultimately, the fabric you choose should reflect your personal style and complement the overall decor of your dining area.

Securing the Upholstery

To secure the upholstery, you’ll need to use a staple gun and carefully attach the fabric to the frame of the chair. Here’s the proper technique to follow:

  • Start by aligning the fabric with the chair frame and making sure it is taut.
  • Use the staple gun to attach the fabric to the frame, starting from the center and working your way outwards.
  • Space the staples evenly, about 2 inches apart, to ensure a secure hold.
  • Trim any excess fabric, leaving a small margin for a clean finish.

Avoid these common mistakes when securing the upholstery:

  • Using too few staples, which can result in loose fabric.
  • Pulling the fabric too tight, causing it to warp or tear.
  • Stapling too close to the edge, risking damage to the fabric.
  • Ignoring any wrinkles or folds, which can affect the appearance of the finished chair.

Attaching the New Fabric to the Chair Frame

Attach the new fabric to the chair frame by pulling it taut and using a staple gun. This is one of the most common methods of attaching fabric to a chair frame during the reupholstering process.

The first step is to choose the right type of fabric for your chair. There are different types of chair frames, such as wood, metal, or plastic, and each requires a specific approach when attaching the fabric.

For wooden chair frames, start by removing the existing fabric and padding. Then, lay the new fabric over the chair seat, making sure it is centered and aligned properly. Pull the fabric taut and use a staple gun to secure it to the underside of the chair seat. Make sure to staple along the edges and corners to ensure a secure attachment.

For metal or plastic chair frames, the process is similar. Remove the old fabric and padding, and then lay the new fabric over the seat. Pull the fabric taut and staple it to the underside of the seat, just like with a wooden frame.

Finishing Touches and Maintenance Tips

One important tip for maintaining your newly upholstered chair is to regularly clean it with a gentle fabric cleaner. This will help to keep the fabric looking fresh and vibrant for years to come.

Here are some cleaning instructions to follow for your upholstered chair:

  • Gently vacuum the chair to remove any dust or debris that may have accumulated on the surface.
  • Mix a small amount of gentle fabric cleaner with warm water in a spray bottle.
  • Lightly spray the cleaner onto a clean cloth and gently blot any stains or spills on the fabric.
  • Allow the fabric to air dry completely before using the chair again.

In addition to cleaning, you can also consider adding some decorative details to your newly upholstered chair to give it a personal touch. Here are some ideas:

  • Add a contrasting trim or piping along the edges of the chair for a pop of color.
  • Attach decorative buttons or tufting to create an elegant and sophisticated look.
  • Use a patterned fabric for the seat cushion to add visual interest and make a statement.
  • Consider adding a decorative throw pillow or cushion for added comfort and style.


In conclusion, reupholstering a leather dining chair with fabric is a simple and rewarding DIY project. By choosing the right fabric, removing the old upholstery, and preparing the chair frame, you can transform your chair into a stylish and comfortable piece of furniture.

Measuring and cutting the new fabric, upholstering the seat and backrest, and attaching the new fabric to the chair frame are the next steps.

Finally, add some finishing touches and follow maintenance tips to ensure your newly upholstered chair lasts for years to come.