I repainted the chairs my brother built last year, and I finally got around to upholstering them last month. This is most certainly not the correct way to upholster chair seats, but it worked for me well enough. They’re imperfect, but at least they’re finally finished.
I ordered 2″ thick high density foam for the cushions and cut it to the size of the seats. I cut the top edges off to angle the edge of the seats, making them more comfortable to sit on than the squared off edges. This is the part I wish I could have done a bit better. Because I only had a craft knife to do this, the cuts didn’t come out smooth, and it does show a bit through the fabric. I don’t think it looks awful, but since I used foam rather than fill, the fabric could only hide the imperfections so much.
I tried to re-use the fabric from the cushions that we had on the chairs originally, but I was short a small bit of fabric. I ended up ordering a khaki colored canvas to use instead. Because of the way the seats were attached to the chair years ago, it wasn’t practical to remove them for the upholstery without risking ruining them completely. So, I use a staple gun to attach the fabric over the foam while the seats were still attached to the chairs.
This worked fine. It took a bit of creative folding to make the corners work, but we got there. Then came the problem of the fabric edges. Since I couldn’t remove the seats, I needed to find another way to hide the raw edges of the canvas, which would most definitely fray and detach from the staple if I left them as they were. My solution was a glue stick. I glued the raw edges and folded them in to keep them from showing and fraying.
They weren’t perfectly crafted chairs, and they’re not perfectly painted or upholstered either, but I’m pretty happy with how they turned out, and they’re more comfortable having a thicker cushion that covers the entire seat.