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Measuring Deep Seating Furniture For Replacement Cushions

Measuring Deep Seating Furniture for Replacement Cushions

Table of Contents

  1. Measure Cushions

    Measure Deep Seating Cushions

  This article will review Measuring Deep Seating Furniture for Replacement Cushions.  In our last article, we discussed measuring standard furniture for seat cushions.

Deep Seating Furniture With Back and Seat Cushions

Deep seating furniture uses thick seat and back cushions for a luxurious seating experience.  Unlike standard patio or indoor hard-framed furniture, deep seating furniture is designed so that you have to use cushions to use it.  Single cushion sets (seats and backs) are used for each seating position.  So, for a chair, you have one set; for a loveseat, you have two sets; for a sofa, you would have three sets. 

To get the right seat and back cushion sets for deep seating furniture, you must consider the following:

      • The specific piece of furniture and the number of seat positions.

      • Seat cushion shape.

      • The overall seat cushion dimensions and height measurements for the backs.  If the back shape is trapezoidal, the width of the top and the bottom will be required.

      • You will have to measure the frame correctly.

      • Seat cushion type.  Identify the type of fill and what type of fabric.

      • Back cushion type.  Identify the type of fill and what type of fabric.

      • Consider tufts or buttons for the back cushions.

      • Consider whether there will be no welting, single welting, or double welting.

      • Consider if you need removable back covers and inner casings or can the back cushions be sewn closed.  The foam seat cushions always have a zippered cover.

    Cushion Interchangeability

    Even though there may be some similarities, not all seat cushions are interchangeable within the same furniture collection.  Typically, rectangular-shaped cushions are interchangeable within the same furniture collection.  So, depending on the set, you may be able to exchange seat cushions between chairs, loveseats, and sofas because they are essentially the same.  But, cushions with rounded back corners have limited interchangeability between furniture pieces. 

    So, when ordering, make sure you know whether the seats are all the same shape and size or whether you need to distinguish between them.

    Seat Cushion Type

    Quality deep seating furniture typically uses medium or high-density foam for the seat cushions with a one-inch Dacron wrap.  Some cushion makers will make cheap cushions using layers of Dacron and no foam.  You want to stay away from all Dacron cushions.   Others will use a little bit of foam and a lot of Dacron.  The foam will be more comfortable than Dacron but more expensive.  Dacron will tend to distort more over time.  Deep seating cushions will generally be five to seven inches thick.

    Seat Cushion Shape

    Typical deep seating furniture will have one of two standard seat shapes.  Rectangular with four squared-off corners or rectangular with rounded back corners.  Generally, rattan, teak, and steel furniture will have rectangular seat cushions, whereas wicker furniture will have cushions with rounded back corners.  Although this is the norm, it is not always the case.  In recent years, some modern wicker furniture designs have rectangular seats, especially sectional furniture.  In addition, many new curved sectionals have curved seat cushions.

    Seat Cushion Dimensions

    Measuring the frame is best to get the correct dimensions for the seat cushions.  Measuring the existing furniture frame seat width and depth dimensions is best to get the size cushions you need to order.  You can use the old seat cushion thickness to estimate the thickness you want or choose the thickness you want.  Remember, old cushions can flatten, or you might want them thicker for more support.

    If the cushions are well-worn and out of shape, measuring them rather than the frame is a bad idea.    Measuring your cushions will be a little tricky, depending on how your cushions are designed.  Boxed cushions are the easiest to measure.  The boxing defines the upper and lower panels seam to seam with depth and thickness.  At the same time, the waterfall design may lead you to guess where to measure the cushion because there is no true definition of start and stop points.  You should only measure the dimensions of the cushions if you don’t have access to the frames in which they reside.

    As an example, a chair may have a width of 23″ and a depth of 24″, and a back cushion height of 19″.  A loveseat might be 46″ wide by 24″ deep with a back height of 10″ and a sofa 60″ wide by 24″ deep with a back height of 20 inches.  You can see by these measurements for these pieces of furniture in the same collection that the seats are all the same size, and the backs are all the same size.  So if you take the 46″ loveseat width and divide by two, you get a 23″ width for each seat for the two-seat loveseat, and if you take 69″ width for the sofa and divide by 3, you get a 23″ width for each seat of the three-seat sofa.

    Not all collections will have this convenience, but many of them do.  It allows you to interchange cushions when the shapes are the same.

    How To Measure The Frame

    Deep seating seat cushions sit in a frame, typically with suspension straps.  Some have a solid or woven platform.  The cushions will generally be slightly larger than the suspension frame itself.  The cushion must fit snugly against the back and side rests and not stick out beyond the front edge of the seat frame at all or, at the very most, one inch if you like it better that way.

    Measuring the seat cushion is relatively easy.  Using the diagram at the top, measure across the front edge of the seat between the arms (Measurement A).  If you have squared-off corners in the back of the seat, measure across the back edge of the seat frame between the arm supports for the overall width measurement (Measurement B).  If your furniture has rounded back corners and there are open spaces in the back, right, and left of the seat frame, you don’t need (Measurement B).  Now, measure the depth of the seat cushion by measuring from the center front edge to the back rest. (Measurement C).  The thickness of the seat cushions is not shown on the diagram.  You will have to decide how thick you want the seat cushions. If you liked the thickness of the existing cushions, you can use that, or change it to a thickness you would prefer.

    Measuring the back cushions for most furniture generally only requires measuring the frame height from the seat base to the highest point to where you want the cushions to end at the top (Measurement D).  Then, subtract the thickness of the seat cushion to get the final height of the back cushion size.

    You can use this technique for measuring deep seating chairs, loveseats, sofas, and chaise lounges.

    Back Cushions

    Deep seating back cushions are typically fiber-filled cushions.  That means they are filled with fiber rather than solid foam.  Like seat cushions, you will need to identify the shape of your back cushions.  For example, some cushions will be rectangular with squared-off corners, whereas others may have rounded corners on the top left, right, or both corners.  Some chairs have an arched top.

    Typical furniture, back cushions will have the same width dimensions as the associated seat cushion.  If you have the old back cushions, take two width measurements, the overall width by placing a ruler flat across the middle of the cushion, adjusting the ruler so that one end of the ruler is at one end of the cushion, and reading the overall width looking down on the ruler and cushion.  Take another measurement by reading the seam-to-seam width measurement.  Now, measure the overall width of the backrest where the cushions will sit.  Between the two cushion measurements, the backrest frame measurement, and the seat width measurements, your cushion maker will be able to establish the correct width of the back cushion for you.  

    When measuring the height of the back cushion, you need to consider that the back cushion will sit on top of the seat cushion.  So, allow for the thickness of the seat cushion in measuring the height from top to bottom.  Just to repeat, to get the hight of the back cushion, you take the measurement of the height of the frame from the seat frame to the point up the back rest to where you ant the top of the cushions to be, and then subtract the seat cushion thickness to get the back cushion height.

    If you think you have a trapezoid shaped chair back cushion where the top is wider than the bottom, then you will need to you will first identify the height to the of the back frame.  Then take measurements across the back rest where the top of the cushion will be and then for the bottom width, you will measure across the number of inches up from the seat frame across the bottom where the top of the seat cushion would be to account for the thickness of the seat cushion.

    Unconventional Shaped Deep Seating Cushions

    If you have casual furniture that is uniquely designed and conventionally shaped cushions won’t work for you, then you will have to make a paper template of the cushion shape and give it to your cushion maker to ensure your cushions are made to fit and look good for a long time.  In particular, some deep seating furniture has “T” or “L” Shaped sections or bolster armrests or maybe a curved front.  These types of specialty shapes would be considered non-standard cushion designs, and developing templates for the cushion maker is the best way to make these cushions.  If possible, provide your cushion maker an image of your furniture so they can better understand the type of furniture they are making cushions for.  Alternatively, you can provide your cushion maker with one of each type of your old cushions rather than making templates.  But, you only want to do this if your cushions fit properly to begin with.  However, this alternative may be more expensive if you have to ship your cushions to the cushion maker.  And, shipping is not cheap.

    Summary – Measuring Deep Seating Furniture for Replacement Cushions

    This article covers identifying the interchangeability of cushions between furniture, the differnt types of cushions, their shape, and dimensions, how to measure the furniture frame, and the type of cushion you need.  It was identified that measuring the old cushions is not the best way way to measure for replacements because old cushions become deformed and its better to measure the frames of the furniture and do not order too large of a cushion.  Quality deep seating cushions are constructed with foam seats and polyester fiber-filled backs.  It was pointed out that deep seating cushions are expensive and that you need to be careful when determining the cushion properties so that you don’t overspend for what you need.  If you have an unconventional shape or type of cushion, you must make a template of the shape and provide it to your cushion maker to ensure you get cushions that will fit and look great on your furniture. 

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