How To Repair A Worn Out and Dirty Pottery Barn Sofa
I have Pottery Barn taste on a Dollar Store budget. For years we bought the cheapest sofa the furniture store had, and they never lasted. I had one sofa for a year and the beam broke. You can find affordable and much better items than the expensive name brands. My luck with sofas has been the opposite.
After many years of struggling and working hard we bought a Pottery Barn couch. It was over thousand dollars! We waited over 3 months to have it made and delivered. They did not say it would take months get a couch when I placed the order. I would not buy a sofa from Pottery Barn again.
Now when you put it into context, it's not crazy. The cheaper sofas at Living Spaces a local furniture store chain are about $300. After taxes and delivery it's over $300. If I buy a sofa and after a few years and it needs replacing or repairs, it's not worth fixing. So you buy a new one. I have horrible allergies and it is risky to buy used furniture.
Long story short, we bought the Pottery Barn couch. It was the first time in our adult lives we splurged and we felt it was worthwhile. Our living room is the heart of our home. We spend a lot of family time on the sofa.
Then after about a year the cushions stopped recovering when someone got off the couch. Not what I expected. It is hard to find any real advice on how to fix it. I only saw bad reviews of Pottery Barn couches when I used Google to solve the issue.
I will say this the sofa spot cleaned well. Pottery Barn wants the sofa cleaned by a professional. We all know is a waste of money if you have a carpet cleaning machine with tools. I’m not telling you not to follow your sofas maintenance instructions. I’m saying some of us don’t and it causes no harm. Wink. I am also not a fan of spraying water and soap into something like a cushion. The cleaning machine suctions the water. Not all the water. Otherwise, the furniture wouldn't have to dry. I worry if there is not enough pressure and the cushion foam may be over saturated and grow mold. So using my little Bissell cleaner on it is something I try not to do unless I have to.
At a certain point my sofa cushion covers needed a proper washing. Because I am a seamstress and I know fabric I felt safe using my washing machine. I removed the covers from the cushions, and I washed them in cold water on the delicate cycle. Never put them in the dryer. Heat can shrink the fabric and set stains. I won’t be able to wash mine again because whoever made the covers did not finish the raw edges, and the material frayed.
So if your cushions need a refresh and the cushion covers are dirty you could wash them at your own risk. I don’t want you to ruin your sofa. A wash could do that. Weigh your options. Having them cleaned may be the best option.
It is easy to fix issues with your sofa. You can clean a dirty couch. You can stuff flat cushions.
Watch the video below Breaha of the DIY Cottage is smart. She used two different Pottery Barn couches to make herself a new one. Her video also taught me you need not start a feather apocalypse to fix the cushions. Her video may be helpful if you did not hit the cushion jackpot like I did.
Take a peek inside so unzip the cushion cover. If you see a zipper on the cushion inside you’re lucky. You may get a piece of foam or batting and slip it inside the cushion. You can do one side or both. Even the actual sides of the cushions. That will add bulk and fluff. If you're on a tight budget like me, $5 will buy foam a polyester quilt batting which works well enough. Many the cotton one's lack bulk and flatten fast.
You measure your cushion or lay the foam on top of it and mark where to cut. Cut the foam or batting. Then stuff.
JoAnn sells legit furniture foam, but the thinnest was $19.99 a yard and my cushions are 30x34 inches. Later on when I have more money, I can buy foam and re-stuff.
When you peek at my after pictures you will understand why I’m unhappy with how my cushions look. I could afford enough batting for one piece per cushion and they still a little deflated. You do not need thick padding 1/4-1/2 per cushion per side will work well. Be aware if you overstuff you won't be able to sip the cover back on. So keep that in mind. Once a fabric store cuts the materials, they usually will not take it back. So you cannot return the foam or batting.
The back cushions are and unsolved mystery because it seems like the is cotton missing. There were huge empty pockets. The cushions are more work. You use a seam ripper or scissors and cut a hole and stuff. Sew the cushion. Put the cover back on. It sounds easy right?
The issue with stuffing with Poly-fil which it requires precision to make sure you do not end up with lumps. You must pull small pieces and fluff and tease the fiber. It will also get everywhere and is itchy. My cushions had three separate compartments. The stuffing took about two hours, but I binge watched ER while doing so it was not boring.
I used batting strips and Poly-fil at the bottom so the cushion stayed upright and was not lumpy. The outcome is not what I desired. When I replace the batting in the cushions, I will splurge on a down filler I saw. Down filler required no finessing and reinvigorating the still somewhat deflated cushions.
If you want to buy a slipcover, use an Ikea slipcover hack. Pottery Barn slipcovers are over a thousand dollars. That is expensive. The workmanship on the sofa itself is nice but the cushions suck.
If you have a low performing Pottery Barn sofa and you cannot afford to replace it do not despair. Clean it to the best of your ability. Stuff the cushions. Add more foam. It makes an enormous difference.
The next step is to raid my fabric stash later this week and replace my throw pillows and covers. I will post a simple tutorial on how to make a fast and easy envelope pillow cover. The couch will seem better when I add new accent pillows.
So if you think my couch after still looks bad I apologize. Remember it is all about the foam and stuffing and the more you add the better the sofa looks. I was looking for a cheap and quick fix. If you are like me and on a tight budget even $10 in materials can make a vast difference.
My project is a failure. If I had tried to bargain shop online, I could have found foam probably cheap. Even though my project was in my eyes a fail, this should help you fix your couch. I will post an update with better photos when I add foam. I hope this post helped you.
Before and after. You can see a difference. I was also afraid of overdoing it and know better now.