Friday, July 19, 2013

Head Over Heels DIY Friday: Staple Gun Seat Tufting

I attacked a DIY that I've never done before- tufting!  I had always been afraid to try it myself but it turned out to be easier than I thought it would be and I'm very thankful for that considering it has been the only thing that went as planned when it came to my "Stupid" Chair redo project

So, after all the failed fabric choices, painting, and repainting I made the decision to go with a dark burgundy fabric to compliment the midnight navy blue chair color.  But to give the solid color surface some interest and dimension, I knew it was time to figure out how to add some tufting.  Dun-dun- dunnnn....
When it came to DIY tufting, I had only seen folks do it by drilling a hole, sewing on a button through that hole, and a bunch of other random steps along the way which made it seem to complicated.  I wondered if it was possible to get the look just using a staple gun because let's face it, a staple gun is much more user friendly than a power drill (and requires no over-the-shoulder supervision from Alex, LOL). 

I started by marking the placement for each button/tuft that would be on the seat cushion.  In order to make sure the fabric would spread and tuck evenly outward, I marked the first tuft in the center of the cushion and measured out 6.5" from there for the other four tufts. 
Then, I used scissors to sort of carve out the foam in the marked spots.  This allows a clear path for the staple gun to staple directly into the wood surface beneath the foam. 

I added my first staple in that center position so that I could work the fabric evenly outward from there. After I got the first staple in place, I pressed my finger into the spot where the next staple would go to test out how the fabric would lay and fold out.  I did this to make sure I wasn't stapling the fabric too loose or tight.
It takes a bit of folding, pulling, adjusting, and readjusting to get the look of the fabric just right as it folds out from each tuft.  It is a bit tricky but you'll get a feel for it after you do a couple.

Once I had all the tufts in place, I pulled the fabric taut and began to staple it in place on the underside of the seat cushion (stapling into the wood).  This part also called for some more pulling and folding to keep the wrapped edge and center tufts looking clean and crisp.
After you finish stapling, you have a tufted cushion!

The last step is to then add buttons to cover the stapled tufts- and this part is the only unique challenge with the staple gun tufting method (but honestly not as bad as that whole drilling and sewing through drilled holes thing).  Since I didn't have buttons that matched the color and fabric I had chosen, I dug some out from my button bin to cover with the fabric.  I simply cut a small circle of fabric and tied the wrapped fabric to the bottom loop of the button.... 
After I had the matching buttons ready I threaded my sewing needle, pushed the foam around the stapled tuft down, and stitched the button into place.  I learned that it would have been easier to do with an upholstery needle instead of the straight needle shown in my photos because that foam will fight back when you move your needle!

With all the fabric secured underneath, my cushion was complete!  One cushion down, one to go, but here's a sneak peek of the chair color and fabric cushion combo...

I'm already Head Over Heels!  Can't wait to have two of them!

What do you think of the fabric and color choice?  Are you liking the tufting? 

Hope to work on the next cushion tonight and have some after pics of the set along with decorative pillows tomorrow!  I'm excited for this heat wave to break tomorrow, hooray!  Have a lovely weekend everyone!

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