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Reupholster this sectional?

January 12, 2019
We have had the below Gus Modern couch for 6 years and love it; cushions are still in great shape so far. We also love that the filler material is organic.

In our redesign, we have our heart set on a bold color couch. Since we already know how happy we’ve been with this couch we are thinking to reupholster, but I’m worried given the price point that perhaps it doesn’t withstand another 6-7 years of active use. I would happily purchase the exact couch again in our selected fabric, but Gus Modern does not do COM pieces. Appreciate any opinions, or would love to know if anyone has reupholstered Gus items?

Comments (14)

  • PRO
    Patricia Colwell Consulting

    IMO it is never finacially feasible to pay to reupholster most furniture unless it is an antique.Why not use this as your neutral in a colorful space instead.

  • DR4
    Thanks @patricia colwell. The rest of the room is already planned around a pink couch and I’m really excited about it. The cost of reupholstering is about the same as a new couch. So either I will be reupholstering this one, or finding a similar couch that allows COM. Trying to decide which option makes more sense given the couch is already 6 yrs old. Do we reupholster since it’s already held up well and we know we love it, or roll the dice on a new couch from a different company that is brand new?
  • PRO
    Diana Bier Interiors, LLC

    It all comes down to how much you love this sofa, the quality of the sofa, and how much it will cost to reupholster it. Reupholstering it will probably be quite expensive, with all that tufting, and the cost of fabric could range from $20 to $200 per square yard or more. You'll probably need at least 30 square yards of fabric. Also, COM offerings are usually through a designer, so unless you have a trade account I'm not sure how that would work. What's your budget?

  • DR4
    Thanks @diana bier. I am working with a designer with trade accounts open, and she has selected me an indoor/outdoor fabric that would work well. She has picked curtain fabrics and mantel paint color around it. I need 39 yards of fabric to reupholster and the reupholsterer’s cost is 2400. So all in reupholstering the couch is ~4K which is not unreasonable to me....if it holds up another 6-10 yrs. Buying a new couch will be at least that in a custom fabric which I’m also happy to do...just worry about it not being as comfortable. If Gus accepted COM I would get a new piece, but they only do it for large trade projects like office spaces etc.
  • PRO
    Diana Bier Interiors, LLC

    Given what you just said, then it's really your decision. No one can tell you how comfortable the sofa will be after reupholstering. I CAN tell you from experience that it will be different. But my inclination is always to reupholster if I like the piece, since I hate just junking a piece of furniture. I would always try to donate it to someone rather than have it go to a landfill.

    If you decide to buy a new sofa then you'll know right from the get-go if it's comfortable enough. So it's definitely a dilemma, and your choice. What does your designer suggest?

  • DR4
    @dianabier do you mean the cushions will feel different bc they’ve been rewrapped? I hadn’t considered that. And yes definitely would donate, I have 3 people who have asked for the couch so that wouldn’t be a problem!

    If I went with a new couch, do you have favorite US/Canadian brands
  • PRO
    HALLETT & Co.
    I just reupholstered two CB2 chairs for my breakfast room. I searched for a year for replacements and I didn’t like the shape of anything as much. I re upholstered with sunbrella and made the seats more firm. We love them! No they are not heirloom furniture but they work for us. Of course our investment was $400 not $4000.
  • DR4
    Thank you @Hallett! That is encouraging. I’m not so concerned about the difference in cost, more about making the right decision from a comfort and durability standpoint. While I’m not price insensitive, I’ve already invested so much in the renovation...so I just want to get the couch right (which will be the centerpiece of the living room which the foyer opens into, and is where we spend the most time as a family.)
  • shivece
    We had a big sectional we loved that we reupholstered in a good fabric. It was a simple job compared to all of your tufting and it was a good decision. The only reason we aren’t still using it many years later is that it doesn’t fit in our new house. Sadly, our new couch isn’t as comfortable. If you love the couch, it is good quality and you have a good upholsterer I would go for it.
  • Helen

    If you like the sofa and the cost of reupholstery is equivalent to the cost of new, I would have it reupholstered.

    In my current remodel - working with my designer - I have had a few pieces reupholstered and I have also had the same upholsterer do pieces custom for me - a chaise; an armchair and a sofa.

    My experience in terms of comfort was that I went to the upholstery studio and actually sat on various types of cushions and styles - i.e. all down; down wrapped around foam etc; tight back versus pillows. I also tested out height of sofa; height of back and depth of sofa to determine exactly what was most comfortable for me. I was also to verify that the sofa frame was hardwood and that the construction was eight way hand tied.

    The price for my stuff was less than comparable lower quality stuff would have been if I just went through a furniture store. And of course, the whole universe of fabrics was available to me rather than the fairly limited fabrics offered by most manufacturers. Even with COM is available, my experience is that it drives up the price considerably.

    In terms of actual comfort when delivered, my armchair seat cushion wasn't as comfortable as I wanted it to be when I sat on it so it has been back for modification. I am still waiting for the new cushion but if that's not the comfort level I am seeking, it will go back again. The advantage of dealing with a designer is that she gives the vendor A LOT of business so there is not going to be any push back in terms of getting exactly what I expected to get.

  • Pajarito

    Look at Younger Furniture out of North Carolina. We looked at the Gus Modern Bi -Jane when purchasing our sectional and was told the Younger was a much better product. Gus Modern is a Canadian company but their products are made in China. Look at their James sectional we have the Scout. All of their pieces can be customized look at their one to one program. The quality is great.

  • PRO
    Diana Bier Interiors, LLC

    Yes, the cushions could feel different. The best way to tell is to test them out with a sample from the upholsterer.

  • DR4
    These are all super helpful comments, much appreciated! Once (if) my project is ever done, I will be sure to post final pics!
  • PRO

    I dont believe this 2 piece sectional is going to take 39 yards. Unless its 44" or less in width. Most fabrics is 54" width. I have reupholstered a many of these very similar style sectionals and 26 yards of plain fabric is enough. But thats where interior designers make their money is markup on fabrics, so the more the merrier for them.

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