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Topic: Restoring faded upholstery?  (Read 3283 times)
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« on: April 03, 2008 08:38:12 AM »

About four years ago I purchased a new sage corduroy loveseat and ottoman. It's super comfy and I love the style and color. It didn't take long, though, for the top of the back cushions to fade from the sunlight that came in from the window behind it. By the time I noticed and kept a blanket over the top, the cushions had already become quite faded. The cushions are a gradient of light sage on top that gradually darkens to the correct shade toward the middle.

Even if it were in my budget to sell or give this away and buy a new one, I wouldn't, because environmentally it's not cool and I love this furniture and wish to restore it somehow.

I'm an artist and I have a good eye for color, but I don't know where to start here. Is there a way to mix upholstery dye to just the right shade? Or will I have to recolor the entire loveseat and ottoman to keep the shade consistent? I know there are experts out there who color upholstery and carpets and match shades, but I cannot afford to hire one.

So I'm wondering if any of your Craftsters have done this before? Any suggestions? Thanks!
« Reply #1 on: May 05, 2008 10:05:45 PM »

I've never done it before, but is there a way you could test it on a hidden spot?  My guess is that if you just did the faded spots there would be a color difference, so I think you would have to do at least the whole back cushion section. 

« Reply #2 on: May 06, 2008 01:44:31 PM »

Thanks for the reply. I think that's probably what I'll have to do. Maybe mix a batch untill I hit a certain sage point and maybe test it on some muslin, and then if the shade looks right try an inconspicuous test spot on the back of the cushion cover.

The color blending is the hard part. Mixing acrylics is one thing, mixing a dark tub of RIT is quite another. I did find a website that lists formulas for standard shades:

I'll give it a try.
Modern Fabrics
« Reply #3 on: May 09, 2008 02:07:23 PM »

One of our favorite websites Threadbanger produced this great video showing you how smart and easy reupholstery can be with a few tools and a little practice.

Reuse and recover your old furniture frames - don't buy new!


Good luck and let us know how your project comes along. . .

Modern Fabrics Company

Reclaimed & Reused Designer Fabrics

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