When considering a furniture makeover, the topic of “how much to reupholster a wingback chair” is likely at the top of your mind. Instead of purchasing a whole new wingback chair, consider having your current one reupholstered instead.
Trust us, we’ve been there too. You know the feeling—we all know furniture isn’t cheap, but in that moment, we have no idea if our budget can cover it.
Purchasing a wingback chair that you can relax in in front of your fireplace during the colder months is a wise financial move. Isn’t that a comforting thought?
You should expect to pay more if you want more customization options or if you want higher-quality materials. You’ve come to the ideal spot if you want to keep track of the money spent on mending your wingback chair.
What Is a Wingback Chair?
The origins of the modern wingback chair can be traced all the way back to 17th-century England. The two closed panels on either side of an arm chair are what give it the “wingback” moniker. They envelop the user from the armrests up to the back of the chair. Compared to modern standards, that probably seems pretty stifling, yet it actually served a useful purpose.
The side panels’ windbreak functionality would protect the occupant from chilly breezes. Don’t forget that the era of these chairs predates modern conveniences like fiberglass insulation and central heating. The only source of heat was the fireplace. Individuals sitting on the wingback chair would be shielded from the sun’s rays.
What Is the Wingback Style?
The wingback chair can be recognized by a few distinguishing characteristics. We can start with the general shape. These seats have a higher profile because they are narrower than they are deep. The second part consists of the side panels. There have been numerous updates to this aspect over the years. You can find the standard form, however many variations on the style have a more compact outline.
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Typically, the legs of a chair in this form are made of exposed wood. Variations include more intricate styles with rounded cabriole-like curves, as well as more straightforward shapes. But, of course, there are variants on this theme, just as there are on any other.
How We Sifted Through the Wingback Chairs
The wingback chair, as you might expect, comes in many different designs. Numerous examples are wildly dissimilar to the standard form. Some examples are from the past, while others are from the present; we tried to provide a wide range of examples.
First and foremost, we prioritized a sturdy build. When selecting a wingback chair, smaller people tend to be more comfortable. As a result, we focused primarily on high-quality options for chairs.
We favored re-creating the original style of the chairs rather than the replicas. A fresh perspective on old patterns is always appreciated. In order to remain focused on the task at hand, however, we only considered chairs with very traditional designs. If not, we’d be on the hunt for a whole new style of seat.
There is a wide range of aesthetics represented in our selections. Many can be used in a variety of settings. The development of this chair design is exemplary.
Is it Hard to Reupholster a Wingback Chair?
This DIY project is difficult if you’ve never attempted to reupholster a wingback chair before. As far as DIY goes, I’d put it in the intermediate category.
When reupholstering a chair, it is essential to pay close attention to every little detail. Alignment on the fabric can be easily messed up.
It’s also possible to unevenly tighten the cloth, leading to an overall sloppy appearance.
I highly recommend taking your time, and stepping back, to check each area carefully as you work. Staples and stitches can be undone or removed from less-than-ideal areas if they aren’t completely hidden.
Take your time and get some distance so you can inspect your progress from every angle. Staples and stitches can be undone or removed from less-than-desirable areas if they are aesthetically distracting.
How Many Yards of Fabric Do You Need for a Wingback Chair?
Upholstering a wing chair usually requires between 5 and 7 yards of cloth.
Your wing chair’s reupholstery project will require more fabric if you choose a patterned rather than solid color.
That’s because it’s important to maintain a consistent flow and correct orientation for the patterns.
That means you’ll have to pick and choose whatever yards of fabric you buy to repair your wingback chair.
In another piece, I list some of the finest yardage available on Amazon. Stunning fabrics may be ordered online and shipped to your door in a couple of days, much to my delight.
This yardage chart is useful since it provides a general idea of how much fabric you should purchase for various upholstery jobs.
Is it Cheaper to Reupholster a Wingback Chair or Buy New?
It’s not uncommon for the expense of having a professional reupholster your wing chair to exceed the cost of purchasing a brand new chair.
Reupholstering a chair professionally is something I would only suggest doing if the chair in question was either antique or emotional.
If you have a high-quality wing chair with sturdy construction, you may also want to consider having it professionally reupholstered.
To get an idea of how much a new wing chair would cost, have a look at some of the most rated options on Amazon. The beauty of several of these seats belies their low price tag of around $400.
Now that we’ve covered the most frequently asked questions, let’s get started on reupholstering that wingback chair. Now, let’s get down to the nitty-gritty of that do-it-yourself project.
How Much Should I Expect To Pay To Reupholster A Chair?
The skill of the professional who reupholsters a chair may make a difference. But we can give you a ballpark figure for the whole thing. This cost depends on what your wingback chair needs.
The quality of a chair’s reupholstery job may depend on the expert who does it. In any case, we can give you a ballpark figure for the whole price. The price tag will vary based on the requirements of your wingback chair.
The price might vary from as little as $70 to $80 for a cheaper cloth to as much as $200 or more for a higher-end option. In general, more cloth is required for larger pieces of furniture.
Because of the inconvenience it would cause you to transport the upholstery, it is recommended that you have the firm who made it deliver it directly to your home. Ask them in advance so you can factor the full price into your budget.
State or condition
The price of having your chair repaired will depend on its current state in addition to the cost of the technicians’ time. Your wingback chair’s condition is directly tied to the quality of the reupholstering job you have done on it. To a lesser extent, this may be necessary if there are only minor issues.
A wingback chair may cost extra due to the additional wood, screws, and frame springs it requires.
Is It Worth Reupholstering A Chair?
Sometimes it’s cheaper to just get a new one and avoid all the hassle than to try fixing the old one. You may want to try reupholstering your wingback chair if you’ve had it for a long time and have grown sentimental about it.
Knowing the age of your chair can help you make a choice. Getting older is irrelevant now. After years of regular usage, the quality of a wingback chair may be solid and all it needs is a little TLC to look like new again.
The wingback chair’s fabric and frame are other important details to think about. How sturdy is the structure? Is there any indication of whether or not it’s constructed from hardwood.
The chair will have a solid basis thanks to these materials. This just indicates that it is neither of poor quality or a plastic imitation.
Take into account how much comfort the chair provides you. The wingback chair’s sentimental worth might be reflected upon. It is worthwhile to reupholster if you have sentimental value attached to the piece and are unable to find a suitable replacement.
Please be aware that reupholstering a wingback chair entails dismantling the chair into its component parts and replacing the padding, fabric, and screws. As a result, the value of the chair is expected to rise with time.
How many yards does it take to reupholster a wingback chair?
If you want to reupholster a chair, you’ll need some material. Depending on the style of chair, you may need anywhere from three to eight yards of fabric. Depending on the fabric you purchase, a yard could cost you $35.
It’s possible to find inexpensive ones. However, since the point of reupholstering is to make the chair last for a longer period of time, we do not advise purchasing them. As a result, it’s not worth it to waste money on low-quality materials like plastic.
Fabric widths range from 36 inches to 118 inches, so it’s important to know which one you’re buying. The fabric’s design should also be taken into account, as some materials are only suitable for use when oriented in a particular way.
The only question you’ll be asked when hiring a professional to recover your chair is the fabric you want to use. This means you need to select carefully, and you might make a note of something you have your eye on. Get the measurements if you’re on the hunt, and think about buying a bit more fabric just in case.
What You Need To Reupholster a Wingback Chair
Take a look at our handy shopping list for all the supplies you’ll probably need to recover that old chair.
- An advanced sewing machine, such as my Brother, which is both computerized and straightforward to operate.
- Powerful Staple Gun, Arrow Fastener T-50s have served me well for many, many years.
- Couches typically require between 5 and 7 yards of fabric.
- Upholstery Needles with a Curve
- A thin cord used in the manufacture of pipes
- Adhesive Bands
- A tool, such as a pincushion, needlenose pliers, or a staple remover
- And maybe stuffing, foam, etc… Various materials and specifications are required for each chair. Just the fabric on my chair needed to be replaced, as it is only six years old and I am its sole owner.
Reupholstering A Wingback Chair: Tips and Photos
You’ll Need a Sewing Machine
A sewing machine will be required to repair the wingback chair’s seat and armrests.
Unfortunately, I am not a very skilled seamstress, folks. Just the fundamentals are beyond my ken. That was excellent enough for the purpose of reupholstering this wing chair.
You should try one of the new computerized sewing machines if you have only used older ones and find sewing challenging.
Amazingly simple to operate, this Brother sewing machine is a dream. You won’t have to remember to manually lower the needle after each stitch because the machine does it for you.
In addition, there are numerous illustrated steps for preparing the thread and bobbin in the manual. Yes, please!
Not to mention, you can get them for under $150. This sewing machine will serve me well for many years to come.
Make Sure You Have a Plan
PLEASE double-check your seat before getting started. If you look carefully, you should be able to determine the sequence in which the cloth was affixed to the chair.
The order in which you take off the parts is counter to the order in which you put them back on.
Most wingback chairs’ upholstery will likely be taken off in the following sequence. DO CHECK YOUR FACTS AS YOU GO, HOWEVER.
- First comes the Skirt, and then comes the Wingback Chair.
- Completely sew-free back panel.
- The Seat Back’s Front, which doesn’t need to be Sewn.
- The chair’s arms and sides will be stitched together and stapled into position.
- This Is The Header Embroidered and tacked on the underside of the seat.
The First Pieces To Remove When You Reupholster A Wingback Chair
The back and skirt sections are the most obvious places to begin dismantling.
My wingback chair’s back was fastened with tack strips along the sides, a plastic tack strip inside, and staples under the bottom.
The wingback chair’s back was glued on rather than sewn. The metal strips can be fastened in place with a staple gun or a hammer and a rubber mallet.
As for the metal strips, I put them to good use on the back panel’s edges. On the other hand, I had to switch out the top plastic tack strip.
With the new strip, I used wire nails to ensure a solid attachment to the frame.
Nails or staples should be driven in extremely flat here to prevent premature wear on the fabric. And there will be a noticeable bump.
Use the Original Pieces as a Cutting Guide
When reupholstering a wingback chair, it is helpful to make use of the old fabric scraps as a cutting reference.
When reupholstering a wing chair, the pinning is the most time-consuming step. Before I began sewing, I pin-tested and re-pinned every new fabric addition several times.
You can see how I secured the fabric to the foam with pins before attaching the cording.
Two More Tips For Reupholstering a Wingback Chair
The first step, for non-sewers like myself, is the most challenging: pinning the seat. Needed adjustments can be made by cutting out individual stitches.
Second, after you have finished sewing the seat and each side and have double-checked that everything is perfect, clip away the excess fabric at the seams to prevent the chair from having funny lumps.
The odds are in your favor.
Here are some of the best guides I found online that ended up being invaluable.
My Favorite Tutorials to Reupholster a Wingback Chair
- Thrift Diving’s 8-part video series on reupholstering wingback chairs was a godsend. These are fairly comprehensive, and they gave me the assurance I needed to begin going.
- You may find a straightforward guide on cording construction at Newton Custom Interiors. Easy peasy, right?
- Learn how to properly upholster an armchair with this instructional video!
10 Top Wingback Chairs
1. Baltic Wingback Chair & Ottoman
- Style: Traditional
- Classic form with a rounded back, nailhead trim in a brass finish, and a matching ottoman
It’s true that the ottoman did influence our decision. Instead of resting our feet on the coffee table, we choose to admire this item. With its stylized wingback style and matching ottoman, the Baltic Wingback Chair & Ottoman exudes an aura of refined sophistication. The panels have been minimized to wide cuffs, creating a rounded back.
High-density foam is used to make the seat cushion extra soft and cozy. This pattern was so beautiful in its understated simplicity. Exposed wooden legs have a straight, tapering shape. The nailhead trim, plated in brass, elevates this item to the level of a true work of art.
2. Grangeville Swoop Wingback Chair
- Style: Cottage/Country
- Style: Floral print on plush padding and a curvy silhouette
There’s nothing not endearing about the Grangeville Swoop Wingback Chair. A perfect illustration of the cottage or country style. The core of it can be found in a chair that provides optimal comfort. This chair is great as an accent piece because of its high-density foam seat cushion and enough back and arm padding.
The flower design is a fantastic addition to this piece of furniture. It makes the chair seem more comfortable and at home. The polyester upholstery fabric is off-white with a black pattern that exudes sophistication.
3. Flavin Concave Wingback Chair
- Style: Modern/Contemporary
- A contemporary design with a wide frame and flared arms.
For those looking for a chair that exemplifies the modern/contemporary aesthetic, look no further than the Flavin Concave Wingback Chair. As opposed to more conventional wingbacks, this one has a lower back. It’s spacious because to its rounded, high back. You can’t help but look all around this piece thanks to the way its curves draw the attention.
The updated Greek key layout looks great and is a nice touch for a touch of classic cool. The polyester gray/beige upholstery looks great against the stark black legs.
4. Stonehill Velvet Wingback Chair
- Style: Glam
- Shape: a modern take on the classic wingback with slimmer side panels and plush velvet upholstery
The Stonehill Velvet Wingback Chair takes the conventional design of a wing chair and updates it with a modern flair to create an elegant piece of furniture. We prefer the blue version of the oversized chair, which also comes in silver. All of the padding is substantial and soft for maximum comfort.
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The silver nailheads and accent pillow complement each other and set it apart. This chair looks like it would be quite at home in a loft in Manhattan. It possesses an incontestable air of sophistication.
5. Bora Bora 2 Piece Wingback Chair and Ottoman
- Style: Coastal
- Chair and ottoman have high-density foam cushions and an eco-friendly rattan frame.
The Bora Bora 2 Piece Wingback Chair and Ottoman Set is not only aesthetically pleasing, but also has a dramatic effect on any room it is placed in. Its sturdy rattan frame exudes an exotic vibe, making it ideal for the armchair traveler. It has the open, rather than closed, side panels typical of wingback chairs.
The well-designed piece is even more comfortable thanks to the foam cushions and tucked backrests. The fact that there’s an ottoman included is a major selling point for us. A drink of iced tea and a snooze in the afternoon sound quite good right about now.
6. Spring Ridge Wingback Chair
- Decor: French Country
- Style: tall wingback silhouette with slimmer side panels and an expanded body.
A little take on the traditional wingback design, the Spring Ridge Wingback Chair is perfect for smaller spaces. We’ve toned down the side panels to just a tiny bit of a flare. Compared to other chairs we looked at, this one has a flatter back. It maintains the traditional height-to-width ratio for beautiful visual effect.
Linen is used for the upholstery, adding a sense of class to the overall design. The fact that it is constructed from rattan for longevity won us over. You can choose between a taupe or blue wingback chair.
7. Dampicourt Wingback Chair
- Style: Modern/Contemporary
- Style: sloping, high-back silhouette with solid side walls
Bringing together the best of both worlds, the Dampicourt Wingback Chair exudes chic modernism. The first striking feature is the design, which puts a modern spin on a classic shape by having a back that narrows toward the seat. Maintaining its traditional closed side panel. The brown velvet upholstery provides a lot of glitz due to its luxurious hue.
The chair’s design features, such as the piping at the panel ends and the flared, dark brown legs, provide it an impression of sophistication. It’s charming even down to the accent cushion.
8. Chalina Wingback Chair
- Style: Rustic
- Styling: traditional wingback silhouette with tapered, inwardly-curving side panels
It doesn’t get more country chic than the Chalina Wingback Chair. In contrast to the light beige linen of the seat and back, the dark brown and white velvet of the sides provide a sophisticated contrast. The design was inspired by the markings of a wild animal to add a touch of mystery. This seat doesn’t want to be seen; it insists on it.
This chair is built to last and features an ultra-plush cushion for the utmost in relaxation. To maintain the wingback silhouette, the side panels have a modest inward flare. The exposed wood gives a weathered appearance that suits the chair’s style.
9. Baxton Studio Vincent Wingback Chair
- Style: Traditional
- Style: conventional wingback with enclosed side panels
For more, see Furniture Construction and Design (Step-by-Step Like the Pros)
The chairs we looked at, the Baxton Studio Vincent Wingback Chair is the one that most closely resembles a classic wingback chair. This artwork possesses an understated beauty. The initial impression we got was that it was a comfortable chair. We were correct. Comfort was not an issue because to the high-density foam padding and the hidden backrest.
The gray linen upholstery is elevated by the addition of silver nailheads along the length of the side panels.
10. Brittania Fan Damask Wingback Chair
- Decor: French Country
- Shape: rounded back, tall legs, with nailhead edging
The French Country and glitzy ambiance are all there in the Brittania Fan Damask Wingback Chair. It’s not as high up on the back as other wingback chairs. There are fewer side panels, making the frame feel more airy and spacious. The upholstery is upholstered in a luxurious chartreuse fan damask fabric.
This accent chair stands out thanks to the silver nailheads that frame its entire silhouette. The refined style of this garment is rounded out by the button tucking and the tapered dark brown legs.
We hope this article was helpful in answering the question of “how much does it cost to reupholster a wingback chair?” Always keep in mind that even the most mundane things may be given a fresh new look. To extend their lifespan by years, all you need to do is use high-quality materials.