How to Apply Upholstery Cardboard Tack Strip

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How to Apply Upholstery Cardboard Tack Strip

In this blog post we are going to about how to use upholstery cardboard tack strip. This upholstery component is one of the most basic supplies to transform a chair or other furniture into a masterpiece. The technique is very simple, so let's dive right in!

Application: Upholstery chipboard tack strip is typically used for the outside arm, outside back or other portions of your chair or furniture that require a straight edge. In the sofa below we also used it to create a decorative small foamed section to give the piece some more character!


Upholstery Cardboard Tack Strip: The most common width of paper/cardboard upholstery tack strip is 1/2", depending on your project it comes in 10yd or 20yd rolls.



Staple Gun: For our project we used a BEA pneumatic staple gun in our shop, but I would only recommend getting a pneumatic staple gun if you plan on doing many projects, but if you can afford it they are worth the investment. Otherwise a hand stapler will work just fine.


Staples: upholstery staples, we used a 3/8" crown x 1/2" long, if you are stapling dust cover that has thick fabric you are stapling through, you may consider something longer. *Double check your staples will fit your staple gun before you buy them!



1. Measure and line up where on the piece you are going to attach your fabric and chip strip. It helps to even draw a line on the piece to make sure it is level.

2. Once you have drawn a line or marked where your fabric will sit, flip your fabric up over the piece so the backside is facing you and line it up so it is level. This is done so when you staple on the chipboard tack strip and flip the fabric back down it has the nice finished side showing out. 

3. Place holder staples into the fabric starting from the edged and staple every 3-4 inches.

4. Take your upholstery chipboard tack strip and measure the length you need to complete the section. 

5. Line up you tack strip and staple the end in an X shape, this will help the corner and end hold its shape as the fabric gets folded over the top.

6. Move your way down the cardboard tack strip, lining it up as you go and place holder staples every 8-10 inches to hold the tack strip in place and put an X staple shape on the opposite end. 

7. Now that you have the cardboard tack strip all in place staple the staples close to the top of the tack strip and only around 1/2" apart. This will create a very crisp edge and as you pull the fabric down to secure it underneath will prevent bumping on the tack strip edge you just created. 

8. Now that you have finished applying the cardboard tack strip you will want to close out the sides using metal tack strips, you can find our How To blog on that HERE


You are finished! Congrats, easier than you thought right?




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