How to Repair Upholstery Webbing

how to repair sprung chair springs with new webbing

The Problem:

What to do when springs start ‘sprunging’ from your favorite chair’s seat bottom?

unique lion head chair

Keeping the upholstery fabric was paramount to the owner of this chair – she just wanted to save the springs!

bottom of chair with springs sagging through torn burlap

This chair did not even have true webbing – just a heavy burlap to hold the springs in place. Notice the tiny metal clips holding the springs on the burlap.

The Solution:

Stretch the webbing across the bottom of your chair: Begin at center front-to-back, then center side-to-side. Work to each side and toward front and back, weaving the webbing as you go. Follow the numbered order in the infographic below.

There are several different types of webbing stretchers available. My personal favorite is the gooseneck style (see demo video here). The straight rubber end style works just as well with practice – it’s just a little more prone to slipping.

How tight to stretch the webbing? Remember, you do not want to stretch the webbing too tight, or your chair’s glued joints will eventually loosen and fail. If you hear cracking, then it’s likely too tight. However, it should be tight enough to make a drum-like sound when struck.

bottom of chair - order of webbing strips

Numbers indicate order to apply each piece of webbing to bottom chair rails

On this chair, since the old webbing was still holding the springs in their original position, it was left attached to the springs, and carefully detached from the chair rails in steps as the new webbing was stretched over it. The springs were then stitched to the new webbing with button twine to keep them in the correct position after the fix.

black cloth on bottom of seat chair

A black cambric covers the webbing for a finished look

side view of upholstery webbing repair

You can leave the existing upholstery fabric intact with this webbing repair method

Got a bigger problem that warrants tearing your chair down to the springs? See this related post: ‘How to Tie Upholstery Springs without a Manual’.

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About the Author

CarlaHey there! I'm Carla Pyle. I love the stories that our furniture tells. For me a picture of my Granddaddy Milton's green upholstered arm chair brings to mind the vivid rhymes & colors of 'The Cat in the Hat' and his soft low voice in the telling. I love too that there is always an element of nature in furniture - the warm-toned curving grain of a walnut leg or the reflection of life in a mid-century chrome piece. The best part of teaching & sharing natural upholstery is that it ties all of these things together. Stories - of individual experience and of the planet - help us build happy & healthy homes.View all posts by Carla →

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