Upholsterer Career

Job Description: Make, repair, or replace upholstery for household furniture or transportation vehicles.


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Upholsterer Career

What Upholsterers do:

  • Fit, install, and secure material on frames, using hand tools, power tools, glue, cement, or staples.
  • Build furniture up with loose fiber stuffing, cotton, felt, or foam padding to form smooth, rounded surfaces.
  • Attach fasteners, grommets, buttons, buckles, ornamental trim, and other accessories to covers or frames, using hand tools.
  • Make, restore, or create custom upholstered furniture, using hand tools and knowledge of fabrics and upholstery methods.
  • Adjust or replace webbing, padding, or springs, and secure them in place.
  • Remove covering, webbing, padding, or defective springs from workpieces, using hand tools such as hammers and tack pullers.
  • Interweave and fasten strips of webbing to the backs and undersides of furniture, using small hand tools and fasteners.
  • Read work orders, and apply knowledge and experience with materials to determine types and amounts of materials required to cover workpieces.
  • Measure and cut new covering materials, using patterns and measuring and cutting instruments, following sketches and design specifications.
  • Examine furniture frames, upholstery, springs, and webbing to locate defects.
  • Sew rips or tears in material, or create tufting, using needles and thread.
  • Repair furniture frames and refinish exposed wood.
  • Operate sewing machines or sew upholstery by hand to seam cushions and join various sections of covering material.
  • Draw cutting lines on material following patterns, templates, sketches, or blueprints, using chalk, pencils, paint, or other methods.
  • Pick up and deliver furniture.
  • Stretch webbing and fabric, using webbing stretchers.
  • Design upholstery cover patterns and cutting plans, based on sketches, customer descriptions, or blueprints.
  • Discuss upholstery fabrics, colors, and styles with customers, and provide cost estimates.
  • Attach bindings or apply solutions to edges of cut material to prevent raveling.
  • Maintain records of time required to perform each job.
  • Collaborate with interior designers to decorate rooms and coordinate furnishing fabrics.
  • Make, repair, or replace automobile upholstery and convertible and vinyl tops, using knowledge of fabric and upholstery methods.

What work activities are most important?

Importance Activities

Handling and Moving Objects - Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.

Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material - Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.

Getting Information - Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.

Performing General Physical Activities - Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.

Estimating the Quantifiable Characteristics of Products, Events, or Information - Estimating sizes, distances, and quantities; or determining time, costs, resources, or materials needed to perform a work activity.

Making Decisions and Solving Problems - Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.

Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People - Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.

Thinking Creatively - Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.

Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work - Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.

Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events - Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.

Coordinating the Work and Activities of Others - Getting members of a group to work together to accomplish tasks.

Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings - Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.

Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards - Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.

Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge - Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.

Selling or Influencing Others - Convincing others to buy merchandise/goods or to otherwise change their minds or actions.

Controlling Machines and Processes - Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).

Scheduling Work and Activities - Scheduling events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.

Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates - Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.

Processing Information - Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.

Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships - Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.

Performing for or Working Directly with the Public - Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.

Communicating with Persons Outside Organization - Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.

Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others - Handling complaints, settling disputes, and resolving grievances and conflicts, or otherwise negotiating with others.

Developing Objectives and Strategies - Establishing long-range objectives and specifying the strategies and actions to achieve them.

Monitoring and Controlling Resources - Monitoring and controlling resources and overseeing the spending of money.

Coaching and Developing Others - Identifying the developmental needs of others and coaching, mentoring, or otherwise helping others to improve their knowledge or skills.

Performing Administrative Activities - Performing day-to-day administrative tasks such as maintaining information files and processing paperwork.

Training and Teaching Others - Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.

Repairing and Maintaining Mechanical Equipment - Servicing, repairing, adjusting, and testing machines, devices, moving parts, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of mechanical (not electronic) principles.

Analyzing Data or Information - Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.

Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment - Running, maneuvering, navigating, or driving vehicles or mechanized equipment, such as forklifts, passenger vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.

Guiding, Directing, and Motivating Subordinates - Providing guidance and direction to subordinates, including setting performance standards and monitoring performance.

Provide Consultation and Advice to Others - Providing guidance and expert advice to management or other groups on technical, systems-, or process-related topics.

Drafting, Laying Out, and Specifying Technical Devices, Parts, and Equipment - Providing documentation, detailed instructions, drawings, or specifications to tell others about how devices, parts, equipment, or structures are to be fabricated, constructed, assembled, modified, maintained, or used.

Developing and Building Teams - Encouraging and building mutual trust, respect, and cooperation among team members.

Holland Code Chart for an Upholsterer