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Details for Upholsterers


Make, repair, or replace upholstery for household furniture or transportation vehicles.


  • Sew rips or tears in material, or create tufting, using needles and thread.
  • Pick up and deliver furniture.
  • Stretch webbing and fabric, using webbing stretchers.
  • Collaborate with interior designers to decorate rooms and coordinate furnishing fabrics.
  • Maintain records of time required to perform each job.
  • Repair furniture frames and refinish exposed wood.
  • Adjust or replace webbing, padding, and/or springs, and secure them in place.
  • Attach bindings or apply solutions to edges of cut material to prevent raveling.
  • Attach fasteners, grommets, buttons, buckles, ornamental trim, and other accessories to covers or frames, using hand tools.
  • Build furniture up with loose fiber stuffing, cotton, felt, and/or foam padding to form smooth rounded surfaces.
  • Design upholstery cover patterns and cutting plans, based on sketches, customer descriptions, or blueprints.
  • Discuss upholstery fabrics, colors, and styles with customers, and provide cost estimates.
  • Draw cutting lines on material following patterns, templates, sketches, or blueprints, using chalk, pencils, paint, or other methods.
  • Examine furniture frames, upholstery, springs, and webbing to locate defects.
  • Fit, install, and secure material on frames, using hand tools, power tools, glue, cement, and/or staples.
  • Interweave and fasten strips of webbing to the backs and undersides of furniture, using small hand tools and fasteners.
  • Make, repair, and/or replace automobile upholstery and convertible and vinyl tops, using knowledge of fabric and upholstery methods.
  • Make, restore, and/or create custom upholstered furniture, using hand tools and knowledge of fabrics and upholstery methods.
  • Measure and cut new covering materials, using patterns and measuring and cutting instruments, following sketches and design specifications.
  • Operate sewing machines or sew upholstery by hand to seam cushions and join various sections of covering material.
  • Read work orders, and apply knowledge and experience with materials in order to determine types and amounts of materials required to cover workpieces.
  • Remove covering, webbing, padding, and/or defective springs from workpieces, using hand tools such as hammers and tack pullers.


  • Realistic - Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

Education, Training, Experience

  • Education - These occupations usually require a high school diploma.
  • Training - Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.
  • Experience - Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. For example, a teller would benefit from experience working directly with the public.



Related Careers

  • Floor Layers, Except Carpet, Wood, and Hard Tiles
  • Furniture Finishers
  • Molding and Casting Workers
  • Shoe and Leather Workers and Repairers
Wages for this career
America's Career InfoNet