Friday, August 30, 2013

60s Mod Couch Reupholster -- Installment 6

Last time we put on the inside back of our sofa. Today we are going to put on the outside arms and back of our sofa. 

Depending on the style of your sofa or your personal preference you may or may not want to put cording on the arms and back of your sofa. I decided I wanted cording on mine so the first thing we did was take our measurements for the cording. We measured up the arms and around and then across the back. It was a lot of cording! I'll explain in a later post how to make the cording but for now just know that you need to leave a 1/2 inch allowance on your cording. 

We stapled the cording around the sides and back of the sofa. When you get to the corners make a small cut in your 1/2 inch allowance to get a tighter fit around the corner. You can also use a pair of pliers to squeeze the fabric together if necessary to get an even tighter curve.

 Get it as close to the corners and edges as you can, try to keep a straight line (or follow curves if necessary). 

After you have your cording stapled on next you will want to staple on your Ply-Grip (also called Curve Ease). Of course if you aren't using cording you'll start with this step. Did you ever wonder how they get fabric on things without the staples showing? Ply-Grip!

In our case we butted the Ply-Grip up against our cording. Be sure to staple each hole in the Ply-Grip. This does take a little precision with the staple gun. You can see the little metal teeth that grab the fabric in the second photo.

You'll want to put any cotton batting on before you put your fabric in the Ply-Grip. For the outside of our sofa arms we had a thin piece of cardboard that reused from the original upholster (found when we took the sofa apart). And for the back of our sofa we ended up stapling a piece of cotton fabric cut from a bed skirt. (You could use any spare piece of fabric for this since it won't be seen.)

After you have your cotton batting in place, measure your fabric for the area you are covering. Remember when you measure and cut your fabric to leave two inches on each side! Put the outside arms on before you put on the back of the sofa. After you do the outside arms of the sofa you'll need to go back and staple more Ply-Grip down the back sides (by the arms) so the fabric on the back will have something to attach to on the side (the place where the back of the sofa joins the back of the arms).

For the Ply-Grip take the little metal teeth and bend them upwards at a 45 degree angle. Take a cake spatula and press your fabric into the valley you've created.

It should catch slightly on the little metal teeth. Once you've pressed in around all the sides take your scissors and angle them into the valley and very carefully cut off the excess fabric.

When you have the excess fabric cut off you'll need to take your hammer and hammer the little teeth flat. You already have them bent upwards so just hammer them flat, like you are hammering them closed. This will pull the fabric taut across the area.

On the sides and the top where the Ply-Grip butts against the cording use the flat spatula to get a nice tight, clean fit.

When you have all your Ply-Grip hammered down you'll need to staple your fabric to the bottom of your sofa frame. In other words, completely finish the outside sofa arms before you move to the back. Now you have finished the outside arms and back of your sofa!

Friday, August 16, 2013

60s Mod Couch Reupholster -- Installment 5

If you've been following along you'll remember that last time we put on the inside arms of our sofa. This time we are going to put on the inside back of the sofa (the part the cushions will be against).

Of course the first thing you'll do is measure the inside back of your sofa to know how big to cut your fabric. Remember to add two inches to each side. When you have your fabric cut lay it across the inside back of the sofa.

Here again you'll be making cuts to go around the sofa frame. Same as before you'll use the needle to get the angle of your cut. Cut one side at a time and staple (described below) then move to the other side and do the same.

When you have made your cuts to go around the top and the bottom frame, push the fabric through to the back so you can staple it to the frame.

Start in the middle of the side and staple out to the edges of the side. As always, staple a little out from the center and then move to the other side of the center. Staple one side completely and then move to the other side, make your cuts to go around the frame and repeat. For now don't staple the part of the fabric above where you made cut at the top. (We'll get that when we staple the top part of the inside back.) Next you'll move to stapling the top and the bottom. Same thing here, staple a little on the top, staple a little on the bottom, moving back and forth from side to side and top to bottom. The reason for all of this is moving back and forth is so that you can keep your fabric pulled tight and wrinkle free. The picture below shows the part of the frame where you will staple the top. Basically just pull it over the top and staple it to the piece of wood there. Staple it as close to the bottom of that part of the frame as you can. You'll need to staple cording here later and you don't want your staples to show.

The picture below shows where you will staple the bottom part to the frame. You don't have to worry so much about your stapling here, it will be hidden by the back of the sofa.

At the top where you made your cut you'll want to make a pretty fold and staple that down. The staples will hold the fold in place. In the picture below the fabric isn't stapled down yet so forgive the pucker, it is more to show the fold. Also: you might need to cut out a little of the extra fabric when you are making the fold. Just be sure and not cut too much out.

When you have your fabric stapled on all sides you'll want to cut off your excess.

And there you have the inside back of your sofa! (my apologies readers, I neglected to take a picture.)