The dog ate my dining chairs is real. Here’s how to reupholster them.
The IKEA JOKKMOKK dining set in antique stain was one of the first things my now husband and I bought when we moved in together over 10 years ago. It was a great wee set and served us well.
Not too long after, we adopted Darwin the destructor dog, who enjoyed gnawing on the set even when sprayed with dog chew repellent, didn’t put him off.
Eventually, we decided to renovate the house (which had been long overdue). The faithful set was looking worse for wear and the chewed wood would catch on clothing, so they were relegated to the attic and dubbed as spares.
What they looked like before the hack:
We have since moved home and now have a dedicated dining room with a family heirloom antique sideboard being the main feature in the room. I felt it was time to breathe some new life into the spares and see if I could blend them with the sideboard and home decor a bit better.
IKEA items used:
JOKKMOKK dining chairs x4
Other materials and tools:
Ebony wood stain Paint brush Sandpaper Power sander Screwdriver ‘HelloFresh’ insulation wadding (This is the insulation liners that come with our grocery deliveries. We reused them in this project but if you don’t have them, you can use foam padding) Voyager oronsay mineral fabric Metal ruler Chalk Fabric glue Staple gun & staples Scissors
How to rejuvenate the IKEA JOKKMOKK dining room chair
First I cleaned the chairs with hot soapy water and left them to dry.
Next, give them a good sanding, part by hand and part with a power sander (because it was taking a long time and was hard work). This was the longest part of the process. There were lots of teeth marks to smooth out.
Wiped the chairs with a damp cloth to remove dust. Coated with a layer of ebony wood stain and left to dry. Then, I gave a brief sand of the stain when dry and applied another coat, then let dry and repeated again.
Reupholster old IKEA JOKKMOKK dining chairs
Moving on to upholstering the chair seat. First, I watched a YouTube tutorial on how to reupholster dining chairs.
I flipped the chair upside down and unscrewed the seat part of the chair. Using a screwdriver I removed the 4 screws that held the seat to the brackets on the chair frame.
Using the chair seat as a template, I drew around the seat onto the wadding. Cut around the line. Repeat for each seat. Then, drew around the seat onto the fabric, measured an additional 4cm excess fabric round each side.
Cut the fabric to size taking a bit more off at the corners where the seat meets the chair back. Then, I glued the wadding onto the top of the seat, in line with the edges of the seat.
Pulled the fabric over the top of the wadding and held it taut on the underside of the seat. Staple. Pulled tight and stapled directly opposite the initial staple, moved round the entire underside of the seat, stapling one side, then the opposite side until the fabric was stapled all around the seat.
Tidied the corners of the fabric by folding them, pulling them taut and stapling them.
Slip the new seat back onto the chair and screw it back on to the chair frame.
Admired my handy work. Had a wee seat.
Tell IKEA hackers.
How long and how much did it cost?
I’d say it took around 10-15 hours for all 4 chairs. Cost was around £40.
What do you like most about the hack?
I love the fabric and how well the chair colour matches the sideboard now.
What was the hardest part about this hack?
The sanding, it felt like a thankless task.
What to pay special attention to?
The positioning of your fabric if you choose a patterned one.
Looking back, would you have done it differently?
No, maybe would have picked a different upholstery fabric but only because I felt like a kid in a candy shop while shopping for one.
And other thoughts/ comments that you have received about the hack.
I hate waste and am sentimental about the times we had with these chairs but they were worse for wear. Which is why I decided to restore them.
After the project, my sister who is a keen up-cycler said “these turned out better than I expected! ” This is one of my first DIY projects she made a comment. High praise indeed.
~ by Karina Scott
More on the JOKKMOKK dining set
The JOKKMOKK dining set is one of the rare pieces in IKEA made entirely from solid pine. No particle board here.
You can choose from either a beautiful antique stain or black brown. My money is on the antique stain as the furniture piece will grow more beautiful over time — the colour deepens as the pine wood ages.
Re-tighten the screws when necessary to maintain the integrity of the structure. If you keep the set in good condition it will last you for years.
The design is simple with curved crossbars over the back of the chair for a traditional Scandinavian style. The chair seats do not come with cushions. Reupholstering the solid wood chairs like how Karina did is one way to go. Chair pads is another.
It seats 4 and is a great option for for small dining spaces.
In the US, you can purchase the JOKKMOKK set comprising a dining table and 4 chairs for $179.99. The higher bar table and chair version sells for $249.99.
For simplicity and durability, it’s probably only matched by the INGO table / IVAR chair combo.
Jules Yap started IKEAHackers.net in 2006 as a personal blog to showcase the most impressive IKEA hacks from all over the world. Since then, she has learned a lot more about power tools and DIY. Her site has helped thousands modify IKEA furniture with step-by-step tutorials, craft projects and home styling.