Is it worth it to recover chairs?

cherriJuly 13, 2006

I live in the Midwest and have not priced out yet, but I have two Clayton Marcus wing chairs that I paid alot of money for, but need to up-date upholstery (moving into new home) I don't believe they will need anything other than fabric replacement. Is it worth it???

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Hello, Cherri. I struggled with the same dilemma for the last year. We bought a couch over ten years ago--paid a lot of money for it but recently moved into a new home where the fabric no longer works--updating needed!! I finally decided that it was worth reupholstering. I love the shape and the body/frame of the couch is in excellent condition. If you love your chairs and can't seem to part with them, then I would go ahead and have them recovered. The cost for a beautiful couch is pushing $1600-$2000, so it seems. The cost to recover might run you $500-$800 depending on the fabric and other variables. Good luck!!

    Bookmark   July 13, 2006 at 7:01AM
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It seems from what I've read here that recovering is a pretty personal choice. Many people think that for the cost of doing extensive recovering (especially in an expensive fabric on a large piece like a long sofa), one can get at least a pretty good quality sofa.

Factors like whether the chairs are "heirlooms" or are just random pieces will impact this, as will your own personal taste for the pieces (not just the fabric.) You may find that a new fabric changes the character of your chair in an undesirable way; a good designer can help you with that.

From what you say, it seems that you're considering re-covering based only on decorative issues, not wear and tear or problems with the fabric like many people have. Re-covering a good 10-15 year old sofa can in some cases be a great idea; however, it seems slightly less plausible that recovering for only decorative purposes on two chairs would make sense.

Sorry if I do espouse my opinion a bit, but it's ultimately a very personal choice you're going to have to make. If it seems worth it to you as opposed to purchasing new, then by all means go for it!

    Bookmark   July 13, 2006 at 4:35PM
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If you like the shape and feel of the chairs go for it. I have 2 unique (at least now) 3/4 queen anne chairs. I bought them over 25 years ago for $200 each on sale. When I moved and had to buy a new couch for LR we had the 2 chairs rebuilt (so they could do double duty at my DR table) and recovered to coordinate. Total cost $250. I shopped for sale material and found a reasonable Upholsterer. We have moved several times since and now live in a house without a formal LR. I decided to use the chairs at my kitchen table paired with a window seat. Again I found material on sale at $5.00 a yard ($75.00) and it only cost me $300.00 to upholster both chairs. So for $375.00 I got 2 brand new chairs that will hopefully last another 25 years.

    Bookmark   July 14, 2006 at 12:28PM
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I am a fan of reupholstering pieces. I have the pleasure of working with a very fine upholsterer and he has taught me much about how to assess a piece. Most upholsterers will come to your home and assess the pieces. They will give you an honest opinion and you will have to make your decision based on that. Also, consider that if the webbing and springs are all in fine shape you may only have to pay for recovering... less work=less money. Even ripping down entirely and rewebbing/springing/batting was more affordable for us than purchasing commensurate quality "new". But we liked the lines and the pieces had a "history".

Generally speaking, if the piece was expensive and of good quality it's worth redoing, IF you still love the lines and it will work for you.

So much upholstered furniture is basically garbage... cheap framing, poor materials, built for the "hot" new trend in style and meant to be jettisoned when it goes "out of style".

Whatever you decide I hope you will update us.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2006 at 1:46PM
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