Frugal DIY: How to Reupholster a Chair in 6 Easy Steps

Please, do tell me how cute this Reupholstered Shabby Chic Chair is?!? I’ll show you how to reupholster a chair is simple and will save you hundreds of dollars. Plus you’ll get the look you want!

Cute Desk Chair – $5 + $2.99 for materials = $7.99 total!

We’re on a very tight budget, but I’m determined to (re)furnish several rooms in our home including my daughter’s bedroom.  She has never had a “theme” and now that she’s 10 we’ve pinned down her style as shabby chic.  She’s an old soul and would have loved to have been born during the times of horse-drawn carriages and chivalry.  So when she said she loves roses, antiques, and lace I knew that the popular shabby chic style would fit her well.

I’m a part of a community Facebook group started by local moms who buy and sell from each other, it’s an invite only group so it keeps the Craigslist flakes at bay.  Yesterday a sweet lady posted the adorable chair pictured above for just $5 and I knew I had to have it!  I picked it up today and stopped by Goodwill with Haley in search for some material to recover the seat.

We found a fabric shower curtain for $2.99 – it’s the perfect material, sturdy and thick!  This was my first time reupholstering anything and I can’t believe how easy it was.  It literally took me less than 15 minutes which plays into my appreciation for a simple DIY tasks.  Let’s just say that patience for long term projects isn’t one of my strong suits.

Here’s how you reupholster a chair in 6 easy steps…

  1. Turn the chair upside down
  2. Remove 4 screws
  3. Remove lots of staples holding down the current fabric
  4. Roughly cut the new fabric using the old as a template
  5. Pull the fabric back over the seat cushion and staple it down
  6. Screw it back to the chair frame and you’re done!

If you hadn’t read in our previous posts, we’re very excited to be in the process of buying our very first home!  We have moved a great deal in the 12 years (and 4 kids) of marriage and we are very eager to settle into our “forever” home.  Moving to Bend has been such a blessing in so many ways for our family, and buying a home is just icing on the cake – something we could have never done in CA.

Being frugal is great, but I’m still a woman who wants to decorate and furnish her first home!  So on that note, I’ll be sharing a few posts this summer about frugal ways to repurpose, redecorate, or refurnish your home on a budget.  So stay tuned for more Frugal DIY posts!


  1. Tamara says

    Great job! Any idea if one of those groups exists down here in your old stomping grounds…East Bay.

  2. Evelyn says

    We desperately need to redo our old kitchen chairs and have been intimidated by it. This looks super easy. Thanks!

  3. Tammy says

    Looks great! Exactly what you would want a shabby chic chair to look like! I love the shabby chic looks myself and would love to use that “theme” in one of my rooms, but hubby doesn’t quiet feel the same way about “older” things….someone’s else’s “junk” is what he would call it, but I love it!! Still trying to fit it in someway……*sigh*. Anyway, I’m sure your daughter is thrilled with it.
    Lucky for you to be able to move to Bend….nice place – husband used to ski there all the time in his younger days! And, I know what you mean about Cali…..I live in the Central Valley (after moving here from Bay Area), and I’ll tell you, nothing is “cheap” around here as all of you California girls know. That’s why it’s so nice to have a great couponing site like yours to follow! :)
    ~ Tammy

  4. Averi Hughes via Facebook says

    I did this last summer for the first time. Painted my old bedroom set for our daughter and she loves it. All I had to buy was the brushes, primer and the paint and a little bit of fabric for the chair seat. Yours looks fantasic!!!! :-) Can’t wait to see all your summer projects and steal some ideas. :-)

  5. Averi Hughes via Facebook says

    Yeah, I was terrified to re-cover the chair and now I laugh about it. At the time, I told my husband…”I’m changing this thing every year, it was so easy.” LOL

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