Things You'll Need
- Upholstery needle
- Fray reduction glue
- Magnifying glass (optional)
- Strong lighting
Some of the most beloved non-human members of our family can have the sharpest claws. While these claws serve a purpose to the cat, they can be detrimental to homes and furniture. Fixing a cat scratch on fabric furniture can be frustrating but requires little more than a keen eye and patience.
Examine the scratch on the furniture under strong light. Figure out what color thread you will need to repair the scratch as seamlessly as possible.
Apply a fray reduction glue to the edges of the fabric. This will prevent fraying and further damage to the torn area.
Thread your upholstery needle with thread of your chosen color. Knot the end of the thread.
Turn the edges of the ripped piece of upholstery towards the "inside" of the furniture. Pinch them together using your fingers.
Position the needle beneath the upholstery on one side of the scratch, inside the "wound" caused by the cat's scratch and as close to the edge as possible.
Push the needle up through the fabric. Push the needle through the pinched fabric edges, making sure to catch both of them as close to the outside as possible.
Push the needle through the fabric again, taking care to make tiny stitches. This is called a "whip stitch."
Repeat this process until the entire scratch is repaired. There should be a nearly invisible seam in the area where the scratch was.
Tie off the end of the thread, and push the excess gently into the upholstery so that it is not visible to the naked eye.
If the rip is of an odd shape or the item has patterned upholstery, consider using a colorful or contrasting patch and making it a feature of the furniture piece. If the scratch is too detrimental to repair, consider buying or making a slipcover for the fabric furniture item. Consider training your cat to use a scratching post, rather than the furniture. Some cats would gladly welcome the alternative. In addition consider regularly trimming your cat's nails or applying stick on "claw covers" that will prevent your cat from scratching furniture.
If the edges of the scratch are rough or you are working in poor lighting, you may need a magnifying glass to properly repair the torn fabric.
- Craft Zine - How to Mend Torn Upholstery
- "Care and Repair of Furniture;" Albert Jackson, David Day; 1994
Elizabeth Tumbarello has been writing since 2006, with her work appearing on various websites. She is an animal lover who volunteers with her local Humane Society. Tumbarello attended Hocking College and is pursuing her Associate of Applied Science in veterinary technology from San Juan College.