How Much Fabric Do You Need for Upholstery? Fabric Yardage for Upholstery

How Much Fabric Do You Need for Upholstery? Fabric Yardage for Upholstery

Here are some suggestions and ballpark figures for how much upholstery material you’ll need for reupholstery projects.

Depending on the type of furniture you have, it may be difficult to calculate the amount of yardage you need to recover a chair, sofa, ottoman, or stool. How much fabric do you need for upholstery?

If you estimate the needs of your furniture incorrectly, you might have to start from scratch. You might still have odd breaks in the upholstery where the pattern doesn’t line up even after purchasing more of the same fabric.

To avoid these problems, learn how to calculate upholstery fabric yardage here.

Measure the Cushions

A single cushion from the piece of furniture should be measured first for length and width. Add two to the length to account for the top and bottom faces of the cushion, and one inch to the length and width to account for the seams.

If your cushion has four sides in addition to the top and bottom faces, measure the sides’ height along with the top and bottom faces’ length and width as you would for a typical cushion.

Add the result to the total measurements of length and width after multiplying that height measurement by two. The final seam measurements should include two extra inches.

Since upholstery fabric is conventionally measured in yards, you can convert your dimensions into yards by dividing by 36 (the number of inches in one yard). As you keep track of the width to make sure the fabric you buy is wide enough for the various parts of your furniture piece, yardage reflects the length that you need.

If not, you’ll need to sew more than one continuous piece of fabric together or locate a wider fabric.

How Much Fabric Do You Need for Upholstery? Fabric Yardage for Upholstery

Measure the Frame

You’ll likely also want to cover the back of your furniture piece. The back should be measured for both length and width. Everywhere there will be a seam, add an inch. When you have this measurement, convert it to yards and keep it apart from the other parts of the frame.

Apply the same procedure to the backing’s front. You can measure the width of the armrests as usual and add a few extra inches to make sure their front faces are covered. You should measure the length of the armrests from where they begin (near the cushions) all the way around to the bottom of the outside bottom edge of the armrest.

Double this information to account for the second armrest after determining the numbers for the first. The front section’s length and width should then be visible underneath the cushions, if any. Everywhere there will be a seam, add an additional inch to all these measurements.

Once you’ve finished, add each length you discovered for the front and armrests. To get the total number of yards you’ll need for the frame, convert your measurements to yards at the end and add the back length measurement.

How Much Fabric Do You Need for Upholstery?

There are few things worse than beginning an upholstery project, running out of fabric, and not being able to find more of the exact same fabric. Because of this, it’s essential to know how to calculate how much material you’ll need.

Despite the fact that there are significant variations depending on the type of furniture you are covering, there are a few general guidelines to remember.

How Much Fabric Do You Need for Upholstery? Fabric Yardage for Upholstery

How to Calculate Fabric Yardage for a Sofa?

First, gauge each cushion’s size from seam to seam. To account for seam allowances, remember to measure the side panels as well and add an inch all around. The typical amount of fabric needed to cover one sofa cushion is two yards. Next, determine the length of the sofa’s back from seam to seam.

Once more, add one-inch seam allowances to the couch’s overall length and width measurements. The sofa’s front length and width should be measured. After that, take measurements of the seating area with the cushions removed as well as the inside and outside of the arms.

Calculate the yardage by dividing your numbers by 36. You should be aware that upholstery fabric is typically 54 inches wide.

How to Calculate Fabric Yardage for a Chair?

The method for calculating fabric yardage for chairs is the same as the method for sofas. Start by determining the piece’s length and width, if any cushions are present. Remember to add an inch for seam allowances when measuring the front, back, and sides. Next, take a measurement of the frame, taking into account any areas that have fabric coverings.

To determine the amount of yardage required to upholster your chair, divide each measurement by 36 once you have finished taking them.

How Much Fabric Do You Need for Upholstery? Fabric Yardage for Upholstery

Consult An Upholstery Professional

A professional in upholstery will likely need to be consulted. The best way for you to comprehend your project’s requirements and the true cost of recovering your furniture is to do this. Most upholstery pros have a specific line of fabric they gravitate towards.

Allow them to make a fabric recommendation for your furniture and inquire as to their reasoning. Inform them of the locations of the furniture in your house. To avoid having to go back to the upholsterer a year from now to have it recovered again, it is best to understand your own needs for the furniture and fabric.

A velvet couch in the living room would be one excellent example. High-end velvet is not the best fabric choice for this space because it is likely where all of your guests or kids will congregate.

I would choose a high-performance upholstery fabric that has undergone double-rub testing. Choose a material for the upholstery project that will go well with the room and last a long time.

Final Words: Fabric Yardage for Upholstery

Upholstering furniture is a big job that is harder than it seems. Upholstery fabric estimation is difficult, and it’s simple to make errors that end up ruining a project.

We also advise you to speak with an upholstery expert who can provide you with more specific advice about the situation.


How Many Meters of Fabric Do I Need to Upholster a Sofa?

Typically, a two-seater sofa requires 14 meters. A three-seater will generally require 16-18 meters and a four-seater 20-22 meters. The recommended lengths take into account the use of plain fabric and average-sized couches and chairs.

How Many Meters of Fabric Do I Need to Upholster a Chair?

A small club chair can typically be covered with 5.5–6 meters of fabric. You may need more if your chair is bigger.

Is It Hard to Upholster a Chair?

No problem, just pull a few staples and start over. Reupholstering is a great way to breathe new life into worn-out chairs and even rooms. The materials are relatively inexpensive, the tools are simple and it’s a project almost anyone can tackle with success.

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