How To Estimate Fabric Yardage For Upholstery

Having a sofa or chair reupholstered is a great way of breathing new life into old furniture. This project is, however, much more complicated than it appears. Knowing how to estimate fabric yardage for upholstery takes specialized knowledge, so it is generally best to leave this project to the professionals. If you want to try tackling it on your own, referencing an upholstery yardage chart is an excellent place to start when trying to determine how much upholstery fabric you will need. Keep reading to learn more!


How Much Fabric Do You Need For Your Upholstery Project?

Few things are worse than starting an upholstery project, running out of fabric, and being unable to find more of the exact same fabric. That is why knowing how to estimate the amount of material you will need is crucial. Though there is significant variation depending on what type of furniture you are covering, there are a few general rules to follow.


How To Calculate Fabric Yardage For A Sofa

First, measure the length and width of each cushion from seam to seam. Be sure to measure the side panels, too, and add an inch all around for seam allowances! On average, it takes about two yards of fabric to cover a single sofa cushion. Next, measure the back of the sofa from seam to seam. Determine the overall length and width of the couch and, again, add one-inch seam allowances. Measure the length and width of the front of the sofa. Then, measure the inside and outside of the arms and the seating area with the cushions removed.

Once you have your numbers, divide by 36 to determine the yardage. Keep in mind that upholstery fabric is usually 54 inches wide.


how to estimate fabric yardage chart for upholstery


How To Calculate Fabric Yardage For A Chair

The process of figuring out fabric yardage for chairs is similar to the process for sofas. Begin by measuring the length and width of any cushions the piece has. Measure the front, back, and sides, and remember to add an inch for seam allowances. Next, measure the frame, making sure to account for any areas covered in fabric.

When you finish measuring, divide each measurement by 36 to calculate the yardage needed for upholstering your chair.


Need Help Calculating Fabric Yardage? We Can Help

Furniture upholstery is a big job and it is more challenging than it looks. Estimating upholstery fabric is tricky, and it is easy to make project-ruining mistakes. At Bob’s Upholstery and Design Center, we are here to help. When you visit our fabric store in Marietta, GA, we will gladly help you estimate how much fabric you need for your project. We also offer professional furniture reupholstery services and have decades of experience to help you get the job done right.

Whether you are having trouble with yardage requirements and need help learning how to estimate fabric yardage for upholstery or you would rather leave the entire project to the professionals, give us a call now to get started at 770-421-1278.

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  1. Nikki on February 26, 2022 at 5:36 pm

    Trying to make a mat that is 36×78. How many yards of fabric do I need

    • Kimberly McAllister on August 27, 2022 at 9:14 pm

      How much fabric for a long box cushion with coordinating welt? Cushion measures 50 L x 26 W x 6H?

  2. Tara on March 10, 2022 at 1:30 pm

    I have six dining room chairs I’d like to reupholster. The widest width in the front of the chair is 20.5 “ W x 18” L. They sit at 2.5” high. I realize I’ll need to add 2-3 “ to allow for wrapping around and stapling. Just need the yardage so I know how much fabric I need?

    • Christina on April 2, 2022 at 11:50 pm

      You typically need .75 yards of fabric to cover 2 dining room chairs, so 2.25 yards should do it for six. Just remember that if you get a fabric with a pattern, you may need to get more in order to have the same part of the pattern on each chair.

      • Mary Kate on January 13, 2024 at 6:07 pm

        How much fabric would I need for a couch 90 inches long x 48inches deep?

  3. Chris Anderson on April 9, 2022 at 4:13 am

    Very helpful
    Thanks, i have a project and this is tne start of my journey

  4. Susan on April 15, 2022 at 5:01 pm

    I have chippendale 8 DR chairs with fabric wrapped around the seats. Measurements allowing for the extra needed is 32×32.

    My concern is the chosen fabric has a 4×6 pattern repeat that will need to be centered on each. Should I just double my basic yardage needs or is there another way to figure this?



  5. Jeri Reinauer on May 20, 2022 at 2:16 pm

    How do I figure in yardage for the welting? I know that the fabric will need to be cut on the bias.

  6. Farrukh Rahman on June 6, 2022 at 10:34 am

    I have an ottoman to re-upholster. Its 1 meter long, 1/2 meter wide, 35 cm tall. How much faux leather do I need?

  7. Patty on June 29, 2022 at 3:55 pm

    Hi, I have four dining chairs that have fabric on the back, but leather on the seat. I only want to replace the fabric. It’s on both sides of the back of the chair. The dimensions are 30 inches high by 17 inches wide. How much fabric will I need per chair? I’m using a solid fabric. Thank you!

  8. Noelle Lebeau on July 1, 2022 at 10:19 pm

    How many yards of fabric would I need to recover a chaise lounge cushion measuring

  9. Abbie on March 31, 2023 at 11:40 am

    I have four dining room chairs that need the seat covered. They’re 24×24 how many yards of material do I need ?

  10. SD on May 15, 2023 at 9:03 am

    I have a dining room Bankhead to get re-done. 2 chairs plus a wrap-around bench on two sides of the table. Both chairs and wrap-around bench have a backside. I can find no indication of how much fabric to buy for this project. The material I want also has a geometric pattern. Any help with the amount of fabric estimation would be appreciated. Thank you.

  11. Jennifer Eleu on September 25, 2023 at 10:15 am

    How much amgwrial would I need to recover a 22 x 19 bench? Thank you so much!

  12. Kathryn on January 31, 2024 at 2:25 am

    Hi Bob
    How much fabric is required for a deep buttoned armchair please?
    None of the diagrams represent this style

  13. Linda on February 1, 2024 at 7:20 pm

    I have kitchen chairs that need reupholstered I have added an inch on all measurements for wrap around the seat 20”x20” and back 12”x23” . How much yardage for each chair?

  14. Bea on March 23, 2024 at 11:03 pm

    The fabric I’ve chosen is 54” wide and it says I need 20 yards to redo my three cushion couch. It just seems like an astronomical amount of a non directional fabric as the cushions are attached. Is this really the correct amount ???

  15. Vivian on March 25, 2024 at 7:50 pm

    How much fabric for a patio bench cushion 60”X 19”X 4”?

  16. Jacqueline on April 9, 2024 at 6:30 pm

    I have a square storage ottoman which measures 19″ tall, 15″ wide (4 sides) and the across the top measures 20″.

    How much material would I need to complete the job? I keep coming up with crazy numbers but fell like it should be around 2.5 to 3 yards?

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