Assessing The Sofa
Assessing a Sofa to Reupholster
Just because you have a sofa in your house doesn't necessarily mean that you should reupholster it. It takes a lot of work and a fair amount of cost to reupholster a sofa. Make sure that you like your sofa before making the decision to recover it. If you do you like your sofa, then skip the section below about finding a sofa, but read through the other sections below about accessing the style and condition of the sofa. If you really don't like your sofa, then you may want to find another sofa to recover.
Each sofa style will take a different amount of work. If you are just a beginner, you may want to chose a very simple sofa style to begin on. If you have never done any upholstery before, we'd strongly suggest that you do some small simpler pieces of furniture before starting on a sofa.
Assessing the Condition of the Sofa:
As we inspect the frame, springs, and support linings, one of the primary principles we keep in mind is, "will it last the life of the new cover?" This will be our guide as we try to determine what to fix and what to leave alone.Check the condition of the frameCheck the frame. Try to wobble all parts of the frame. wiggle the arms side to side, grab ahold of the top of the middle backrest and try to pull it towards the front and then push it toward the back. Try to wiggle all parts of the frame. Listen for squeaks and watch for frame wobble and loose joints. If the frame is wobbly, it can be fixed, but it ads some extra work. To fix loose joints often requires that you take everyting off the frame (fabric, padding, springs, etc. so that the joints can be opened up reglued, make triangle fitted corner blocks and reglued. You will also need to have some woodworking clamps. If you or a helper can do wood joint repairs, then you might be OK. But, if neither you nor anyone else is comfortable with doing the frame repairs, you might want to pass us any sofas that have loose jointed frames.
Determining the type and condition of the springs:
Sofas general have one of these types of springs:
Hand-tied coil springs, which are among the best types to have. If tied propery, coils springs give superior support and comfort. Much of the time yoiu can determine is the sofa has hand tied springs by putting your hand under the sofa and pressing up. If you feel a firm spring support underneath at the bottom of the sofa, it may be hand tied springs. A sofa with hand tied spring generally has webbing across the very bottom of the sofa, with the springs pressing down against the webbing. This gives the bottom of the sofa a firm "full" feeling. When this type of set needs retieing, the bottom often sags down because the webbing stretches as it gets older. Also, the top between the springs will feel loose.
Arc springs (commonly called zig zag springs). If, when you feel the bottom of the sofa, all you feel is
Machine wired coil spring
Rubber or Elastic Webbing