Pleather Chair Repair

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We purchased this super comfy rocker recliner a few years back at Ashley Furniture. It is a blend of leather and plastic so has the look of leather at a much cheaper price. Unfortunately it is also not as durable as leather. It came with a one year warranty which we ended up using. The chair’s recline lever is between the arm and the seat cushion and the arm had torn a hole in the seat. Ashley customer service was great. They even sent a repair guy to our house despite the fact that we had picked the chair up ourselves so technically should have had to bring it back in for repair. When the repair guy replaced the seat cushion he suggested I keep the old one in case I ever needed to patch or match the fabric. Smart man!

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Fast forward two years or so and the leather/plastic blend material is peeling. Thanks to the forward thinking of the repair man I have the old cushion with fabric to patch the chair with.

I did some googling (how did we ever fix anything before Google?), found some information on glues to use on fabric that is a synthetic leather or leather/plastic blend and I purchased some Loctite Vinyl, Fabric and Plastic Repair.

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I measured the area that needed to be patched and added a few inches to have a peel free area for the glue to adhere to. I also added an extra inch so I could fold each side under 1/2″ to create a clean, fray free line.

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I got the cushion out of the basement and took it out of it’s plastic bag only to discover it was covered in mildew. Panic! I grabbed some vinegar and a rag and it wiped right off. Yes! I removed the fabric from the cushion. Then using my handy dandy quilting mat and rotary cutter I cut out the rectangle I needed.

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Next I attempted to iron the fabric to free it of wrinkles and to fold the edges in. Fail. I didn’t want to melt the fabric so I had the iron on super low. I kept nudging the heat up as it was not working but got nervous about melting so decided to live with the wrinkles and glue the edges under.

I began with gluing one edge, folding as I went. It didn’t stick at first so I tried again with a thicker line of glue. I had to wait a minute or two for the glue to make the fabric a bit “melty” and then voila! I put those home improvement books to good use to hold the seams in place while it dried/cured. I worked one side at a time letting each dry before I did the next.

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The next day I placed the fabric where it needed to go, measured to make sure I had it even-ish and square-ish, then marked each strait edge on the chair with a 2-3″ piece of blue painters tape. Starting at the top I applied the glue to both the patch and the chair and stuck the glue together doing a few inches of one side at a time. Then I secured it with painters tape all around the edges like the Loctite instructions said to. I laid a few heavy blankets on top to hopefully help everything stay in place better while it dried.

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It’s not perfect but it is certainly better than it was and will prolong the life of this chair until replacing it is in the budget. It has been about two weeks now and it is holding up well.  Now to try to figure out how to patch the side of the cushion where the lever has ripped through the fabric on cushion #2.

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4 responses to “Pleather Chair Repair

  1. Pingback: Slipholstered Couch | lifewithcheryl

  2. We have 2 of these exact same chairs (over 5 years old), and one is peeling in the exact same spot/way as yours!! I was so excited to see this pin; but I don’t have extra material 😦 Will keep looking for a way to fix it, but using some of your tips.

    • I saw some fake leather vinyl at JoAnn fabric today. You could probably use that. It isn’t cheap but if you use coupons it would be affordable. Ours chair in rough shape again. It has worn in a few more spots and the patch is peeling up in some spots. I need to glue those back down. But overall I am still happy with this solution to the problem.

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