What You Should Know About Reupholstering a Sofa

Reupholstering a sofa can breathe new life into a beloved piece of furniture and save you money compared to buying a brand-new sofa.

However, the process requires careful consideration of materials, filling, and fabric type. We can guide you through the essentials of reupholstering a sofa so that you can make an informed decision and create a stunning, comfortable, and long-lasting piece of furniture.

Choosing the Right Material

It can be tough trying to narrow down the right materials for your sofa reupholstery project. Here are some tips from the pros to help you pick the perfect fabric for your lifestyle.

Construction and Shape of Sofa

When selecting the perfect fabric for reupholstering your sofa, it’s essential to consider its construction and shape. The material should have enough flexibility to work around curves and corners and be strong enough to withstand tension and wear.

Fabric Durability

Durability is critical when choosing upholstery fabric. High-traffic areas need a fabric that can handle daily use without wearing out too quickly. Look for a fabric with a high double rub count, as this indicates its resistance to abrasion.

Stain Resistance

For busy households or homes with children and pets, stain resistance is a must. Some fabrics have built-in stain resistance, while others may need additional treatments to protect them from spills and stains.

Ease of Cleaning

Some fabrics are easier to clean than others. Look for materials that can be spot-cleaned or machine washed. Try to steer clear of dry-clean-only fabrics, as they can be expensive and inconvenient to maintain.


So, colorfast is something to look for because it means the fabric was dyed so that the color will never fade or run over time. Choose a colorfast fabric to ensure the colors won’t fade or bleed after years of use and washing. This is particularly important for bright or patterned fabrics that can lose their vibrancy with exposure to sunlight and regular use.

Consider Your Personal Tastes and Home Décor

In the end, the sofa fabric you go with should reflect your personal style and complement your existing home décor. Consider colors, patterns, and textures that make your sofa a stunning focal point in your living space.

The Stuffing, Filling, and Cushion Material

When it comes to reupholstering your sofa, it’s also important to think about the filling material that goes inside the cushions and armrests. High-quality cushion materials can make a massive difference in comfort and longevity. Here’s a list of some of the best filling materials for a sofa you can choose from.

·         High-density foam: Offers excellent support and durability but may feel too firm for some.

·         Memory foam: Provides a balance of comfort and support but can be expensive.

·         Feather and down: It creates a luxurious, soft feel but requires regular fluffing to maintain its shape.

·         Polyester fiberfill: A budget-friendly option that provides adequate support but may flatten over time.

Best Fabrics for Upholstering a Sofa

There are many great fabrics on the KOVI website, but here are some of the best materials to reupholster your sofa at home.


Probably one of the most common fabrics for sofas today, aside from leather, due to its durability, soft feel, and vast color selection.

• Pros: Breathable, natural, and elegant.

• Cons: Wrinkles easily and may not be as durable as other options.


Common and affordable, cotton is a great choice if you’re reupholstery a sofa in a sitting room or an area that doesn’t get much traffic.

• Pros: Durable, easy to clean, and versatile.

• Cons: Can be prone to wrinkles and may fade over time.


This fabric quickly rose to fame for reupholstery projects because it feels soft and smooth, is resistant to many things, and is fairly affordable. Plus, microfiber has grown in color selections over the years.  

• Pros: Stain-resistant, durable, and soft.

• Cons: It can attract lint and may not be suitable for those with allergies.


One of the best materials you can go with for sofas and couches. Leather is an excellent, timeless choice that matches almost all styles.

• Pros: Luxurious, durable, and easy to clean.

• Cons: Expensive and can show scratches.


Not as popular as others, but velvet can add a touch of elegance to your home that no other fabric can.

• Pros: Soft, luxurious, and adds a touch of glamour.

• Cons: It can be difficult to clean and may show wear more quickly.


Is it worth it to reupholster a sofa?

Yes. If the sofa has a high-quality frame and sentimental value, reupholstering it can be a cost-effective and eco-friendly option.

How much does it cost to reupholster a couch DIY?

The cost can vary greatly depending on fabric choice and cushion materials. Expect to spend between $200 and $1,000 on average. Is it hard to upholster a sofa?

Reupholstering a sofa can be a challenging project, especially for beginners. However, with patience, the right tools, and detailed instructions, it is possible to achieve professional-looking results.

How can I upholster my couch at home?

1.     Remove the old fabric but try and preserve it so you can use it as a template for your new material.

2.     Assess and repair the frame, springs, and cushion material if needed. Reinforcing the wood frame can make the sofa sturdier, as well as tighten up any hardware hidden beneath.

3.     Measure and cut your new fabric, using the old pieces as a guide, if you can. If not, carefully measure the sofa sections to determine what size pieces you need.

4.     Staple or hammer tack the new fabric to the frame and ensure a smooth, tight fit. Sometimes having a second pair of hands for this step helps as one person can pull the fabric taught while the other staples it.

5.       Sew or attach details and embellishments like piping, cushions, etc.

6.       Reassemble what’s left of the sofa and enjoy your refreshed piece of furniture!

The Bottom Line

Reupholstering a sofa can be a very rewarding project that lets you customize the piece of furniture to suit your personal style and your existing home décor. By carefully selecting the right materials, filling, and fabric, you can create a stunning, comfortable, and even durable sofa that will be the centerpiece of your living space for years to come.

Now that you’ve got all the best tips, check out our selection of high-quality reupholstery fabrics!

1 thought on “What You Should Know About Reupholstering a Sofa”

  1. What about reupholstering a quality overstuffed arm chair? I have 2 Herndon matching chairs with 1 matching ottoman. The fabric is well made & of very high quality. I can not do it myself.


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