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The Association of Master Upholsterers

J A Milton Upholstery

  • How to Reupholster a headboard

    Reupholstering your headboard is an easy and effective way to give your bedroom a  refresh. Perhaps you have recently redecorated and would like your headboard to complement the new décor or you would like to make the headboard the focal point of the room. If this sounds like you, follow our steps below to learn how to reupholster a headboard.



    Step 1 - Choose your fabric


    There’s a lot to think about when choosing the perfect fabric for your headboard. You want to go for a fabric that reflects the décor of your bedroom such as matching your curtain fabric or an upholstered chair. You should also choose a soft fabric that is durable and easy to clean (especially if you have little ones in the house). Fabrics that look great on a headboard include leather, suede, cotton or polyester.

    We have a large selection of fabric in a variety of colours and textures, take a look at our fabrics page for inspiration.



    Step 2 - Remove headboard fabric 


    Remove the headboard from your bed or wall - the headboard should be easy to remove by undoing the screws. Once removed, you will need to take off the current fabric using a staple remover.


    Step 3 - Measure, cut and attach padding to headboard


    Next, measure the padding for the headboard. Our furniture foam can be cut to any size, shape and thickness, making it ideal for padding your headboard. Once measured to size, cut and attach using a staple gun.


    Step 4 - Measure, cut and attach fabric to headboard


    An easy way to measure your new fabric is to use the previous material as a pattern. Simply lay the original fabric onto the new fabric and cut around it using fabric scissors, making sure you leave enough room for the fabric to be pulled behind the board and stapled.

    If you damaged the original fabric when removing it from the headboard, don’t worry, you can still measure your new fabric to fit. Just measure the size of the headboard, leaving around six inches to overlap onto the back. Mark the fabric with tailors chalk or fabric markers to ensure you cut straight lines.

    Attach the cut fabric to the headboard using a staple gun. The easiest way to do this is to lay the headboard on top of the fabric and pull the fabric tight and staple the fabric into place at the back of the headboard.



    Step 5 - Refasten headboard back on the wall or bed


     When you are happy with look of your headboard attach it back onto the wall or bed using the same screws as before.

    Ta-da! You now have a reupholstered headboard!


    Tools you


    Staple remover

    Furniture foam

    Staple gun


    Fabric scissors

    Tailors chalk or fabric marker

    Measuring tape


    We hope these steps have helped you reupholster your headboard. If you would further advice, please contact our team on 01691 624023.

  • How To Attach Clips To Pirelli Webbing

     Cream JAM Club logo

    How To Attach Clips To Pirelli Webbing 

    In this weeks video we show you how to attach clips to Pirelli webbing using a workshop vice or Pliers. We also show you which is the right and which is the wrong side.

    If you having difficulty with a certain tool or you would like to know if there is better way of doing something then do not hesitate and send us and email and we may make a video to help you out. Please send your request to

  • How To Use Rubberised Hair

    J A Milton Upholstery Supplies Logo

    Rubberised Hair is a great alternative to a traditional loose hair filling and a step up from foam.  In the video we show you how to add a Polyester Edge Roll using Tacks or you may want to use Staples, it is up to you. We also demonstrate how you would cut the Rubberised Hair to create a shaped seat or back.

    If you would like to recommend a feature in this spot then please email:

  • Chair Caning Course

    J A Milton Upholstery Supplies Logo

    Great News! Out Chair Caning Course is back! On Thursday 23rd and Friday 24th of November our Chair Caning course will be running for another 2 days with tutor Brian Crossley.

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    Course Information

    The courses are two days long and will take place in J A Milton’s workshop in Ellesmere. You can either bring along your own piece of furniture or you can purchase a sample frame to work on. Sample frames take on average 6 hours to complete so make an ideal first project.

    The classes will be from around 9:15am until 4pm including a cold buffet lunch and refreshments throughout the day. If you would like to come to us for a course we can recommend some of our local accommodation.IMG_3256


    Thursday 23rd & Friday 24th November 2017

    Booking Your Course

    A complete two days will cost just £190 for the 2 days (+ VAT charged at the standard rate which works out at £228) including a cold lunch buffet and refreshments. We accept Credit, Debit cards and Paypal as well as Cheques and BACS payments. Please telephone Sue, Chris or Lee-Ann on 01691 624023 to book or learn more. If you're looking to buy a course as a gift for someone, we can provide open-dated vouchers so the recipient can choose when to attend

    About The Tutor

    Brian has 55 years experience of chair caning. He is a Member of the Basketmakers’ Association and a Yeoman Member of the Worshipful Company of Basketmakers. Based in Chester, Brian takes commissions from all over the UK and has recaned furniture dating from 1670 up to the present. Brian has vast experience of teaching and gives talks and demonstrations of his craft to various groups around the world, as well as acting as an adviser to museums with regards to the historical significance of their collections of cane furniture.

    So to book your place or to find out more information then do not hesitate and give our office call on 01691 624023

  • Which staple gun?

    Your staple gun will give you years of service provided it is used correctly. Some hobby models, if plugged in too long, may overheat: To avoid this do not leave the tool plugged in for more than 2 hours per session.


    Electric staple guns can jam if you fire them too rapidly: Please allow time for the mechanism to  return before firing the next staple. Rapid firing is for pneumatic (air) guns.


    Electric guns are put into three categories, hobby, semi pro and professional guns.  Remember that some pressure may still need to be applied and there is a kickback on electric guns as the working mechanism is in the nose. Do not try to repeat fire too quickly or this can jam.


    • A hobby gun cannot be used for excessively long periods or it will overheat it will also not be as powerful as a professional gun making penetrating hard woods and mdf difficult.


    • Semi Pro. This is a little more powerful and can be used for longer periods.


    • Professional Electric gun. More powerful and  can be used for longer periods without overheating. Also it will use a professional wire staple (71 series) which come in boxes of 20,000 making individual staples cheaper. This is the same staple generally used for upholstery in a pneumatic gun.


    Follow the link below to view our range of electric guns:-


    Air (pneumatic) Guns

    Obviously the outlay is a little more when setting up your kit but the advantages are many. Repeat firing is not a problem as there is only a blade to return into the nose each time rather than a spring mechanism.  Very little pressure is required when firing and there is no kickback.


    Follow this link for air gins:=


    Follow this link for compressors:-


    Follow this link for hose and connectors:-

  • Frequent Questions and Answers

    Here at J A Milton's we have frequently question's asked on a weekly basis as we wanted to help you we put the question's over to Joan for her advice and to ask her for any possible hints.



    What glue can be used? 

    "This is not a straight forward question as whatever is used will need to be tested on small areas first. It will also depend on the fabric content because spirit based glues can melt some synthetic contents in fabrics. Alternatively water based glues can seep through to the top side of the fabric and dry leaving marks.

    On some fabrics it will be with our spray glue. This will be fine as long as it is used sparingly with a light spray on both surfaces. When allowed to dry (go white) it will act like contact adhesive. Do not allow the glue to create puddles, spraying from the right distance and not too heavy will prevent this. This will be pretty permanent.

    If the fabric is not too thin, like cotton or linen, a thick mix of wallpaper glue or PVA can be used this allows a certain amount of movement before it becomes permanent.

    In any case it is really important to make sure that any method is sampled in small areas before going ahead."


    My nails keep bending in the wood, why this is happening?

    "Fancy headed nails have a domed head and in order to knock them in straight, without bending the shaft, they need to be hit squarely in the center which is where the spacing tool helps by holding the nail square. It also helps to use either the nylon tipped hammer, which is made for the job, or by wrapping the tip of your hammer with leather. This helps prevent it from slipping when it hits the nail head and also stops it damaging the head.

    Another tip is to make a very shallow pilot hole with the very tip of a bradawl (don't go too deep as most bradawls are wider than the shaft of the nail and will make the diameter of the hole to wide). It is very important to make sure the pilot hole is not at an angle, the spacer tool can help with the cantering this hole.

    The nail spacer tool also relies on you knocking the nails home straight to prolong its life which is where the small pilot hole helps. The tool has to be made of a soft material in order that it clasps the shaft of the nail but this of course does mean it will wear but used correctly it does have a reasonable life expectancy."

    To view our full list of hints and tips click here 

  • Our Newest Members of the JAM family

    Baby News... 



    You may have spoken on the phone to Becky in the past and know that she left us to have her second baby. Becky had a lovely baby boy, Caleb Ezra Oliver Newson born Sunday 30th October 2016 at 16.32 weighing 6lb 12oz.

    Caleb quickly started to struggle with his breathing so was rushed over to intensive care within special care baby unit with a chest infection and sepsis.

     With Caleb on oxygen a drip and antibiotics he was finally on the mend was moved on to high dependency. With lots of help and care from all at Wrexham Maelor hospital Caleb and Becky are finally home and adapting from having a family of 3 to a family of 4.

    I am sure you will join us in wishing them a very Happy Christmas now they can enjoy their new addition to the family.



    Meet Lauren




    Lauren joined us at the beginning of December as an apprentice in our Warehouse and Buying Department. She will be working over the next few years towards her qualifications in Supply Chain and Warehouse Management.

    To read more about Lauren, please click here

  • Welcome to the J A Milton Blog

    Welcome to the brand new J A Milton Upholstery Supplies blog! In celebration of our new website we also decided to create a blog as a place to provide you with hints, tips and information about our company.

    The company has grown dramatically since Joan first started restoring and upholstering furniture on her own. We now offer a huge range of upholstery supplies, fabrics and braids and even offer a variety of courses to pass on knowledge and help keep the industry working to a high standard. We also offer our Etsy service of creating furniture such as headboards and footstools in a made-to-order fashion, any shape, size, colour and decoration. Plus Joan and Alison continue to take on re-upholstery work in our new workshop.

    This blog will feature regular posts and will cover a huge range of topics from insights into our courses, to information about tools and even series about certain topics which will continue over a few weeks.

    If you would like to receive updates please subscribe to the blog and if you have any questions please feel free to comment and we will be happy to answer them for you!

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