Build A Sofa with Chaise Lounge

  • How to Build a Sofa with Chaise Lounge

Built from pine and plywood and upholstered with foam, wadding and fabric, the sofa and chaise lounge are 800mm wide, with the cushions removed to provide a comfortable bed, while seating with the cushions is about 500mm high by 450mm wide.
 
DIY: $780 (Have it made for $2780)
Skill: 3/5
Time: 5 days
 

MATERIALS ON THE CHEAP

Many components of this lounge suite were found on council collection days, including timber for the frame, the hardwood feet and foam from old sofa cushions.

The plywood panels are packing sheets sold cheaply at the hardware store. And although the fabric was the most costly part it was still just $250, bought as remnants at 30% discount.

You’ll need to buy 6.5m of 1.5m-wide wadding, about $65, foam in various thickness, strong thread plus a needle for stitching the corners.

Use a sliding compound mitresaw to cut the frame and a circular saw with a straightedge to cut plywood.

Attaching Foam

To join the two-part foam cushions and attach them to the arm, use spray adhesive on both pieces. To secure foam to the plywood seat base, apply contact adhesive to the foam using a brush and use a spatula to spread it onto the plywood. When the surfaces come into contact they stick permanently, so position the foam accurately with assistance from an extra pair of hands.

attaching foam
Attaching foam for extra comfort is simple.
 

Slip Stitching Technique

Slip stitching holds a folded edge to a flat piece of fabric. Work from left to right, starting with a single thread fastened with a knot hidden inside the hem. Bring the needle out through the folded edge, pick up a few threads of the flat fabric and pierce through the fold again. Slide the needle along and out of the fold to make the next stitch. 

 
slip stitching technique
Slip stiching is a great skill to learn for upholstering your own furniture
 

Tack Stitching Technique

Tack stitching holds fabric in position while it’s being permanently stitched.  Work with single or double thread knotted at the end, sliding the needle in and out of the fabric. End a line of tacking with a single backstitch or a knot. To release the stitches cut off the knot and pull out the thread.
tack stitching technique
Tack stiching is a great skill to learn for upholstering your own furniture
 
 

How to build a sofa with chaise lounge

Step 1. Make the frames

Butt join the crossrails over the studs to make three frames for the chaise and three for the sofa, overhanging the crossrails on one side of the sofa frames by 35mm (see Diagram 2), drill 3mm pilot holes and countersink, securing with screws.

Step 2. Join up the frames

Stand the sofa frames vertically to secure a rail inside the frames at the front, two rails outside the frames at the back. Secure a base rail under the front and back plus a crossrail between the frames. Repeat for the chaise but position the rails inside the frames.

Step 3. Clad the frames

On both frames secure the short sides with PVA adhesive and screws spaced 200mm apart along the top and base, then secure the long sides. On the seat base drill a series of 19mm breather holes 200mm from the edges then secure to the crossrails.

Step 4. Cut out the notches

On the top right corner of the sofa back panel and top left corner of the chaise back panel, mark 200 x 200mm notches and cut out with a jigsaw. TIP Cutting the notches leaves the space above the arms open.

Step 5. Assemble the arms

Butt join the arm sides against the base, securing with adhesive and screws. Secure a cleat at the top back with screws then secure the top with adhesive and screws. Drill holes through the back panels into the cleats to secure the arms with screws.

Step 6. Glue the foam to the base

On the foam seat and the seat base roughly mark a 200mm-wide border and 200mm-wide strip at the centre to apply contact adhesive within the lines, turning the foam over accurately on the base and leaving to dry.

Step 7. Cover the seats

Staple foam to the front and sides and secure the wadding. Staple fabric to the back, stretch over the top, down the front and staple underneath. Pull it down the sides, staple the corners and underneath, pin and slip-stitch the corners.

Step 8. Make the cushions

Use a jacksaw to cut two lengths of foam into triangular halves, leaving the other three rectangular lengths intact. Use spray adhesive to join a triangular piece and a rectangular piece of foam to make each cushion and cover with wadding (see Diagram 3).

Step 9. Cover the cushions

Cut a paper template, leaving 20mm overhang on the sides, using the template to cut the fabric. With right sides facing in, pin the sides then tack stitch and finish on a sewing machine. Turn the cover right-side out, insert the cushion, securing with slip stitch.

Step 10. Cover with fabric

Secure foam to the arm tops, using a staple gun to secure the sides and back panels. Cover the arms with wadding and the arms and back panels with fabric. Sew the corners with slip stitching, stapling fabric only to the front of the back panel.

Step 11. Assemble the pieces

Glue bare surfaces of the back panels, arms and seat, clamping together. Drill pilot holes through the back into the rails at 200mm intervals and secure, pulling the back panel fabric down, stretching beneath the seat and securing with staples.

Step 12. Upholster the arms

Lay the fabric on the arm exterior with 30mm overhang inside. Secure cardboard 10mm inside the arm over fabric with staples. Spray the fabric with adhesive and fold back into the arm interior. Secure the back and base with adhesive and staples.

Click on the diagram

Follow the labelled diagram to build the chaise lounge. It has the name of all the parts and the measurements to help you cut the components and assemble the lounge. 

Click on the diagram

Follow the labelled diagram to build the sofa. It has the name of all the parts and the measurements to help you cut the components and assemble the sofa. 

Click on the diagram

Follow the labelled diagram to install padding on the sofa and chaise louge. It has the name of all the parts and the measurements to help you cut the components and assemble the sofa. 

Click on the cutting list

Follow the cutting list to build the sofa and chaise lounge. It has the name of all the parts and the measurements to help you cut the components and assemble the sofa and chaise lounge. 

Click on the cutting list

Follow the cutting list to build the sofa and chaise lounge. It has the name of all the parts and the measurements to help you cut the components and assemble the sofa and chaise lounge.

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