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Old 02-07-2010, 01:34 PM   #1
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Sofa Reupholstery Project

I just finished reupholstering my sofa and I'm very proud of the results. I figured I'd share the photos just in case someone is interested.

Let's start with some history. I bought my 2006 Safari used so I really didn't have much choice on the interior color scheme. It's called "Beach Party" and it's not bad, but not my favorite.

My dog loves those big front windows and although I don't allow him on the furniture in the house, I couldn't help but let him look out the windows in the Airstream. BAD DECISION.

When I leave him in the trailer he gets up on the sofa and "digs" himself a little spot to lay - always in the same spot where I sit on the left side. I've never caught him in the act, but I know he does it. His nails slowly started pulling threads one at a time. It was starting to show. Besides that, the fabric attracted dirt like a magnet.

So it was time to look into reupholstering the trailer.

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Old 02-07-2010, 01:50 PM   #2
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I started by getting a quote from a highly regarded RV interiors company. I had done some research on fabric, ultraleather, etc and thought the price couldn't be more than $1,200 to $1,500. Boy was I wrong.

The quote, not including fabric, was $1,250 for the couch and $1,050 for the booth. Fabric was quoted at between $35 and $98 per yard on top of that. Of course the Ultraleather was at the high end. Wow, I didn't think reupholstery would cost more than buying NEW furniture!

I pretty much gave up on the plan but then I saw a thread recommending www.newtoto.com for upholstery fabrics. I checked them out and found most Ultraleather for $21 per yard and some on sale for $15 per yard. It got me thinking.

In Jr. High School we had 12 weeks of art, 12 weeks of shop, and 12 weeks of home economics. I've sewn before, so I bought a cheap sewing machine for $89.

I also purchased seven yards of Ultraleather Ultratec 7000 from newtoto.com for $120 shipped to my door. So I'm in this project for just over $200.

I took the sofa seat and back off the jacknife frame and brought them down to the basement to start disassembly.

WARNING, WARNING, WARNING. At this point you may want to put on sunglasses or a welding helmet. My basement is 100% 1972 and the carpeting and furniture is hazardous to your eyesight.


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Old 02-07-2010, 01:59 PM   #3
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I forgot to mention that I decided not to take on the entire reupholstery project like originally planned. The booth is in great shape, so I decided to get a beige Ultraleather that would work with the existing blue and only reupholster the base and back of the sofa.

The Ultraleather is supposed to be about twice as durable as fabric, so I'm going to see how it holds up to the abuse of my dog. If it holds up well I may pay a professional to do the entire thing years down the road. Until then, this will work.

The Flexsteel furniture is about as easy as it gets for reupholstery. Everything is just simple straight stitching and it's almost like a slip cover wired to the frame. I just took it apart piece by piece, used the old fabric as patterns for the new, and put it back together the same way I took it apart.

Sewing is a bit delicate for a guy... since it requires a little more finesse than a hammer, but if I can do it anyone can.


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Old 02-07-2010, 02:10 PM   #4
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Seat finished, next step is the back.

I took apart the sofa and brought the seat and back into the house last Saturday morning and had the seat finished on Sunday. It could have been even faster but I'm getting some major carpal tunnel pain in my hands and need to break it down into small sessions.

I started to take apart the back of the sofa yesterday and was able to break it down, cut all the new pieces of fabric and stitch the shell back together in a day.

The sofa back was much more advanced than the base because it had so much stitching to make it looks like several cushions. I just broke it down into six sections, left top, left bottom, center top, center bottom, etc.

Once the six sections were finished I stitched the top three together, then the bottom three together combining six into two. Then the two were joined to make one piece. Then the back and sides were added and I called it a day with a completed shell.


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Old 02-07-2010, 02:20 PM   #5
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Finishing Up

This morning and fastened the shell to the frame. That didn't take very long and I ended up reinstalling the sofa into Airstream by noon leaving plenty of time before the Super Bowl.


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Old 02-07-2010, 02:24 PM   #6
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Done

I'd say it turned out pretty good and only time will tell how it holds up to the abuse. It's already broken in because I bumped it against the greasy hitch ball when I brought it in. If you look closely at the lower right part of the cushion you'll see the circle. It should come out.

So there you have it. I saved myself approximately $2,800 by investing $200 and two-weekends of time. Like I said before, if I can do it anyone can.

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Old 02-07-2010, 02:24 PM   #7
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Great job Steve! And considering your dog was the reason you had to take on this project, I think it was good of him to help you with the work. Has he tried out the new sofa yet?
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Old 02-07-2010, 02:38 PM   #8
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That looks like a great job! My dogs have really stained my sofa. I tried to keep them off the sofa and I even put a cover on the sofa. The cover came off, I wasn't paying attention and they jumped on the sofa covered with mud. I might have to try to put new material on it.

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Old 02-07-2010, 02:38 PM   #9
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What Steve doesn't tell you is that he bought a sewing machine for this project. Pretty darned gutsy for a guy to take this on, in my opinion.

Nice job, Steve, and have I told you what a sweet pup you have?

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Old 02-07-2010, 02:42 PM   #10
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I've been joking and calling myself "Susie Seamstress."

Notice in the last picture that the dog is on the floor. I'm going to try to keep it that way.

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Old 02-07-2010, 03:04 PM   #11
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Nice Job!!!

I too saw the mention of www.newtoto.com and bought all my materials for doing the 56 Cloud. What a good selection, great prices and fast delivery. Here is hoping I get as nice a result as you.
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Old 02-07-2010, 03:06 PM   #12
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you did a really great job... wanna do ours?
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Old 02-07-2010, 03:07 PM   #13
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Great job - looks fab!

I know I don't have nearly enough talent and/or patience to pull something like that off, but hat's off to you (and the pups).
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Old 02-07-2010, 03:31 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HankandLois View Post
you did a really great job... wanna do ours?
Actually Lois, you should probably know that you're part of my "do it yourself" inspiration. I'm a loyal follower of your blog and saw your refresh of the Ocean Breeze theme.
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