This project may have taken me a little longer than I originally expected. This is probably my second project involving reupholstered furniture and definitely my most complex. The bench I acquired about a year and a half ago from my husband’s uncle, the fabric I had on hand since last summer, and the rest of the materials were already at my house. In this tutorial I’ll show you how to strip, reupholster, and refinish a bench. Do you have any DIY projects that just seem to never be quite finished?
reupholstered bench diy
- Staple gun and staples
- Staple remover
- Needle nose pliers and fabric tac remover were used
- Protective gear
- eye protection, respirator mask, work gloves
- Spray paint x2 cans
- Rust-Oleum Stops Rust Satin Spray Paint, Classic Navy is what I used. The satin finish is very forgiving and easy to wipe pollen and dirt off of.
- Sandpaper (fine grit) or steel wool to sand between coats
- Zinser Bulls Eye 1-2-3 is what I used due to the wood having significant staining
- Fabric that is at least four inches longer and four inches wider than your upholstered base
- Batting that is at least four inches longer and four inches wider than your upholstered base
- Tape measure
- Screws equal to the same length as those you remove
Begin by disassembling your bench completely to remove any hardware that may be rusted. Replace hardware with new screws and reassemble the base. Do not reattach the top.
Prime bench frame to seal wood from any grime or stains, wait to dry. If you still see stains or the bench does not look even then re-coat and wait to dry.
Spread plastic bag on ground for protection and spray paint your primed bench. Use light, even strokes. After it has dried completely, flip the bench to coat underneath. Sand between coats to ensure smooth, even coverage. Repeat this process until you are satisfied with coverage.
*note: wear a mask and eye protection when spray painting otherwise you’ll wonder why you’re sneezing blue and your eyes are burning.
Remove the first and second layers of upholstery. I did this by using a pair of needle nose pliers and a fabric tack remover. Throughout the process I wore work gloves to get a better grip and reduce my likelihood of getting stabbed by rusty staples. My mask is till on in this pic since I was between coats on the base.
For this step and subsequent ones I brought the bench indoors due to the garage being too dusty and wanting to avoid that becoming trapped between batting and fabric.
Attach fabric over batting similar to how you attached the batting (i.e. staples). Ensure batting is completely covered by fabric. If it’s not, trim back batting.
Place the now reupholstered seat top side down and place bench base over to align. Mark where your screws are located using a pencil, remove base, and cut small holes into the fabric to allow fro screws to pass through. Reattach base using new screws.
Place outdoors and enjoy your reupholstered bench! Optional, but for added protection from stains I suggest treating fabric with Scotchguard. I did so due to the amount of pollen in our area.