DIY: How to Recover Outdoor Furniture With a Glue Gun

craftsdecor & DIY

We do a lot of entertaining and much of it is on our patio.  Because we are in Southern California, we're able to change up the look of our patio furniture pretty regularly with just a little fabric and a glue gun. If you can wrap a present, you can re-cover a cushion.

DIY - Using a Glue Gun to Recover Outdoor Furniture

We recover our cushions regularly because they start looking a bit worn, but are still perfectly comfortable. Because we use a glue gun, we can change the fabric as often as we like.  The last fabric we had on our cushions was a black and white combo for a Halloween Party.

How to Recover Outdoor Furniture ... with Just a Glue Gun


  • Patio furniture
  • Fabric
  • A glue gun


Riley Blake Designs has some amazing fabrics and I knew this fun paisley inspired print was just the thing to bring a shot of color to my patio.

Start by measuring the widest part of the cushion and the sides

Start by measuring the widest part of the cushion and the sides. The width of the cushion was 25" and the sides were about 3" high. To calculate how much fabric you need to cut, add the width of your cushion plus the height of both sides (25+3+3 = 31"), then I add another 6" to ensure it will wrap around to the back. I cut a total length of 37 inches.

The next step is to pull the old fabric off of the cushion. The fabric always pulls off and the old glue sticks to the cushion. This allows me to toss the fabric into the washing machine and save it for future projects. I love that I am able to use these materials over and over again. This Riley Blake fabric is so beautiful that I am glad I will be able to use it again when I am done with it on the chairs.

Take the cushion and center it on the new fabric.

Take the cushion and center it on the new fabric
See?  The old hot glue sticks to the cushion, not the fabric so you can reuse the fabric over again.

This is just like wrapping a present, but instead of paper, it's fabric and instead of tape, you're using hot glue.

Wrap the cushion with fabric

Just fold up the sides and glue. Then fold the "ends" and secure them as well.

Folded and secured cushions

The fact that this "seam" is visible doesn't matter on most furniture. No one sees the bottom of the seat cushion, and most chairs have a back support that hides the seam on the back cushion.

Is it going to last forever? No... but then again, I don't want it to.

Outdoor furniture when finished recovering

I love being able to change up my patio depending on the event. These chairs were perfect for the Mother's Day Brunch we recently hosted.

Colorful cushions and a Mother's Day Mimosa
Colorful cushions and a Mother's Day Mimosa... Nice!

So remember: It's okay to recover old cushions. It's OK to use a glue gun to do it. It's your patio ... do what you want!

Have you ever tried recovering your old furniture using a glue gun? How did it go?

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21 responses to “DIY: How to Recover Outdoor Furniture With a Glue Gun”

  1. Cyn says:

    Love this idea and so timely because my outdoor cushions need a makeover!

  2. Brilliant idea, Viv!! I’m all about some glue rather than sewing. 🙂

  3. Emily Taylor says:

    Wow! Who would have thought of doing this! Fantastic idea, thanks for choosing to use my “Verona” fabric for this project!
    ~ Emily Taylor

  4. Stephanie J says:

    Did you use the laminate fabric? Is it comfy? Great idea!

  5. FMZ says:

    I have only tried using a staple gun but this looks a lot easier !

  6. Amanda Lane says:

    Great idea. Just recovered my old torn cushions. So happy with the results. Thanks for sharing!

  7. Blog says:

    of course like your web site however you have to check the spelling on quite a few of your posts. Several of them are rife with spelling issues and I to find it very bothersome to tell the reality on the other hand I will certainly come back again.

  8. Brad says:

    About how much does it cost per chair (average, know size varies)? Also, what kind of fabric do you use that holds up best and is machine washable? Thanks!!

  9. angela says:

    can i use a staple machine for recovering chair cushions..

  10. Great idea! We have some old patio cushions (that are longer than the ones you made), but I think I can do this!

  11. Oh how I LOVE this! I am all about easy, no sew, and adorable projects. I’m definitely using this method to recover my old grungy patio cushions. Thanks so much!

  12. Great Idea! I was trying to buy new cushions, now heading to the fabric store! Thanks for sharing!

  13. April says:

    How much does it usually cost for all the fabric to redo each cushion? Do you buy “outdoor” fabric only? I am finding it pretty expensive to cover my eight cushions. I love the concept and your cushions!

  14. Tre Cavil says:

    This is so great! I’m so jealous of people that create beauty out of old and worn things. This seems simple enough to try.

  15. Lorna says:

    I really want to do this with our old, torn and even fire-stained patio pillows (yes, the deck repair guy set one cushion on fire!). They are from a Lloyd Flanders set and the new covers from Flanders cost hundreds of dollars each. Only problem I see – the bottom pillows all have the little mini-L ends on the outer side. I don’t know what you call it, but they aren’t perfect squares or rectangles – there is a long end on each pillow that angles out. So how do I cover this using this no-sew, glue-gun, wrap-it-in-fabric method, which I really want to try? Has anyone had experience with this? Thanks!

  16. Lori Witmer says:

    Vivienne, Thank you for this great idea! Do you think it would last for 1 Midwest summer???? June-August???

    I think changing each season would be perfect!


  17. Glassdoor says:

    Perfect for outside use, the patio chair is made with all-climate
    resin wicker that resists fading and durable
    metals that resist rust.

  18. Karen says:

    Recovered my cushions 3 years ago this way and still look great!
    Easy for anyone to do!

  19. Vanessa says:

    Awesome! Thank you for posting this because I did not want to sew some new cushion covers. Between cutting and gluing took all of 30 minutes. Love the result.

  20. rose says:

    I live in KY and the weather is hot and humid. I used this idea with the hot glue and it has been holding up great! It was so easy to do and I will never sew again!! Thank you…

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