the dish on reupholstering

Ruth: I would like to get a chair recovered. Any tips? Big mistakes to avoid?

Gayla, Coco Blanca: First decide if the piece is worth reupholstering. If it is an older piece from the 30s or 40s it probably is more likely to have dowel joints than be glued together. That’s worth investing in. There’s a lot of furniture today that’s not built for a second life—it’s not structurally sound enough to worry about. If you have a piece with a well-made frame, then definitely consider it. But of course you need to love it enough too. Is it unique enough?

Reupholstering can be expensive, but it can be worth it if you can breath new life into a beautiful well made piece. I’m sure all our grandmothers would smile down on us knowing that we have refurbished and brought up to date the very same furniture they so proudly placed in their homes. And it brings great character and unique personality to our own homes.

Once you have decided to take the plunge, make sure you find a reputable upholsterer, and communicate to them carefully what you envision. Also, consult with them first by asking them how much fabric you need to buy. There is nothing worse than coming up a half a yard short!


The results can be gorgeous!

  • The latest from Gayla
Co-Owner | Coco Blanca
With her innate sense of style—making everything beautiful comes naturally.

Using the soothing color palette of a coconut by the sea—whites, neutrals and splashes of turquoise—Coco Blanca has created a trademark look. Her lifestyle boutique offers expert solutions for home design and women’s fashion—blending a clean, fresh, sophisticated, feel-good style.

210 South Union Street
Alexandria, VA 22314


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Get your daily dose of all things fashion, beauty, fitness, and design. Locally sourced and locally styled!