13 Steps to a Stunning Sofa Makeover
Anatomy of a Sofa
With sturdy materials and hand-finished details, a well-crafted sofa -- such as this one by Luther Quintana Upholstery -- can last 20 years, or longer with reupholstering.
A frame of two-inch-thick kiln-dried maple, secured with dowels and glue, serves as a solid base.
A solid-wood frame takes shape on a table at one of Quintana's two workrooms, this one in Brooklyn, New York; orange clamps help set the glue.
Jute webbing is woven along the seat and tacked to the frame with a pneumatic tack gun.
A back view of the jute webbing reveals a network of crisscrossing threads securing the eight-way hand-tied springs.
The webbing is then threaded along the back and vertically along the arms of the sofa.
Eight-way springs, which offer long-lasting support and flexibility, are hand-tied coil by coil with twine to the seat and back.
Burlap is stretched over the seat and topped with cotton batting and synthetic horsehair. A second layer of burlap is sewn into place with a curved upholstery needle.
Zigzag stitches on the seat tie burlap to the springs.
Next, the sofa arms take shape, also with cotton batting, synthetic horsehair, and burlap. A primary layer of burlap is sewn over the springs on the back.
The back is filled out with cotton batting, synthetic horsehair, and a second layer of burlap.
Down-filled casing covers the back, topped with layers of glazed cotton and muslin, which helps grip the upholstery fabric. On a straight-backed sofa such as this one, the casing supplies the comfort in lieu of cushions.
Yellow linen finishes the sofa, and the wooden legs are stained deep brown. The two cushions -- 80 percent down and 20 percent feathers -- provide a luxuriously plush seat.