We have some dining room chairs that are about 10 years old and the padding on the top has gotten quite uncomfortable. When we sit on them, the outer frame of the seat part of the chair presses against my thighs -- it seems that the padding that's on top of the frame has worn out. My understanding is that the foam inside can get worn out, although it's possible the black mesh (see photo) has also stretched out. The white fabric that you see if the fabric underneath the outer slipcover (which is dark gray).

Is there a way I can make these chairs more comfortable without a major surgery to the chairs and also without changing the appearance?

My understanding is that the proper way to fix these would be to take off the white fabric and replace the foam, and then replace the white fabric with the staples. This would be a major project and I'm looking for a more expedient fix because we're not planning on keeping these chairs that long anyway. I'm curious if there's a way to add some foam on top of the white fabric, possibly securing it somehow, and then adding the cover back on top.

Please let me know if you have ideas about:

  1. an approach to adding padding without major surgery

  2. which type of padding / foam to buy

Top of chair

Underside of Chair

  • I'd just go with some thin white seat cushions on the top of the existing ones. You might find some you could easily secure. – George Anderson Jul 4 at 14:02
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    You want a "quick fix" that ends up with the existing white fabric on top of whatever quick fix you just did. That involves taking the fabric off. Once you've got it off, you may as well do the rest of the fix the "right" way, since taking the fabric off and putting it back on (even reasonably neatly) is probably the hardest part of the project. Cutting a new piece of foam and setting it on the webbing is the easy part. – FreeMan Jul 4 at 14:16
  • Thanks, @FreeMan. This white fabric that you see is actually underneath the slipcover of the chair. I should have made that clear in my original question (I updated it). I'm wondering if I can put the new foam on top of the white fabric before putting the slipcover back on. Is that not advisable? – Kulluk007 Jul 4 at 18:46

To replace the foam underneath the white cover you have to remove the white cover.

When you just have the wood frame, the first part that is added is the webbing that crosses left / right and forward / back.

Once the webbing is secured, then the foam padding is added and it can be shaped like a curve on the edges or slightly thicker in the middle.

Then there may be an intermediate cover and the final white cover which is secured with the staples. Getting the cover stretched appropriately so that there are no creases takes patience.

Then the base black cover is fitted to hide the staples and edges of the white cover - so that when you grip to pull the chair you don’t feel the edge of the white cover.

This is a project that can be very rewarding.

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  • ...and there is no quick and dirty way to do it that actually works, so you might as well do it right. It's only "major surgery" because you haven't tried it - it's no big deal once you have. – Ecnerwal Jul 4 at 14:33
  • Solar Mike are you saying that the only thing that would need to be replaced is the foam, or would other things like the webbing, etc. also need to be replaced? – Kulluk007 Jul 4 at 18:48
  • What is the name or type of foam I should look for? Is there a particular weight or density that I should get for this application? – Kulluk007 Jul 4 at 18:49
  • Inspect the webbing: tears through nail holes etc. As for foam, check out shops that sell furniture coverings and material - they will have grades of foam you can compare. – Solar Mike Jul 4 at 19:05
  • My 2¢ is that it is the webbing that as sagged/stretched over the years. – Alaska Man Jul 4 at 19:14

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