A while ago, the office above ours at work had a clean out…

I went dumpster diving…

Got 3 office chairs out of it, that were in pretty bad shape, but seemed fixable.

And so the project commenced. There were times where I just wanted to throw those bad boys out, it seemed too painful and too hard. But being a stubborn creature, I persevered.

Here’s how I did it:

Firstly, unscrewed everything. Some bits were rusty, so there was a lot of swearing involved, and occasional requests for assistance from the man, as though I’m not weak, some screws needed man muscles for removal.



Then once I had the separate chair components, I had to start stripping off all of the pleather they had originally been covered in.

IMG_0958IMG_0959IMG_0961There were a fair few layers of backing fabric just to get to the wooden chair seat that the pleather was stapled too.

Then the fun awful, exhausting, and swear word filled bit – staple removal.

I used a screwdriver to try to prise up the staples, then yanked them out with a set of pliers. I can’t tell you how painful it was. How many staples on the bottom of a chair?


I thought I could then remove the pleather from the foam. Think again, parts of the pleather had actually been sewn onto the foam, which meant a good hour or two of unpicking…

I think at this point I asked myself “ye gods, when will it end?”

IMG_1008But apparently that too passed, and once I’d managed to remove the pleather from the foam, I could unpick all of the panels, to use as a template for my fabric.

I used spray adhesive to stick my foam to the chair base, as some of it had come loose.

Then the sewing commenced. I basically used the old pleather panels to cut new panels from my fabric, and sewed them all together. It wasn’t perfect, and there was a fair bit of fiddling around, but I got there in the end.

Then all I had to do was re-assemble the chair.

Hello new chair: