Q & A, Slipcover Arm Re-Design

Q. How should I slipcover an upholstered arm with pleats?

Top arm re-design

A. Balance, and your fabric properties are key considerations.

Slipcovers are not stapled in place, so you must always consider the natural limit line of your material.

Virginie Asks,

I am attempting to slipcover two upholstered club chairs with problem arms.  The arms have a seam down the center into which the upholstery fabric has been pleated to form a curve rather than making a right angle turn.  The result is an uneven surface over which my slipcover fabric is unable to effect a smooth turn.  I would appreciate any advice you would be so kind to offer.  I am out of ideas.  Thank you so very much.

Hello Virginie,

First I’ll start with a thought, it may or not be relevant. Refer to the pic with the arrows on the arm. The fabric seems to dip into the frame at that spot. Tug on the pleated area that I have illustrated. Does it lift away from the frame? If not, it has been attached to the frame with a “pull”. This pull would be stapled to the frame, pulling that area in, giving it an indented appearance.
From the picture I cannot tell if that is the case. But it is something you should become familiar with so that you can tackle other projects in the future.

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