Don't get me wrong, cats are great. But unfortunately, they don't always mix well with furniture.
In June 2021, I bought a new sofa. The rich plum colour worked perfectly with my living room ideas and was the star of the space. Then, a few months later, we got a cat. Keen to make her mark on her new home, the sofa arm became one of her favourite scratching spots.
Fortunately, I discovered a smart hack on TikTok to fix it that cost under £15. And I personally think my sofa has never looked better!
Our front door opens onto the living room, so the arm of the sofa is one of the first things you see when you enter the house. Obviously, a heavily scratched and fraying sofa was not the first impression that I wanted to create, but at the same time, I really didn't want to waste money and buy a new sofa when there was nothing else wrong with it.
Despite all the efforts to dissuade the cat from scratching, the sofa began to look more and more worn and ragged. Unfortunately, there was no way of covering it up either – I couldn't reposition the sofa to hide the damage against the wall and there's only so much work a nest of tables can do.
After living with the deteriorating sofa for a while, I decided to do something about it. Of course, my first port of call for inspiration was TikTok where I saw people repairing their sofas with patches.
The first challenge was finding the right patch design. I wanted to choose something that looked like it had always been there and I found a beautiful flower lace patch on Amazon. It was big enough to cover the damage and had an embroidered look.
From my browsing on TikTok, I knew that the first step was to remove all the pulled threads and fluff. The best way to do this was with a Bic razor. Gently going over the fabric, the razor removed all the rough edges, creating a smooth surface which increased the likelihood that my patch would stick.
Colourful flower embroidery-style patch – set of three so you can find the best fit for your design.
This all-purpose glue can be used on fabrics, wood, glass, and more. It has a narrow nozzle that is ideal for precise application.
The patches had barely hit the doormat and I'd got to work, pinning it in place to see whether it worked both practically and aesthetically. Once I'd settled on the position, my thoughts turned to adhering. The sofa is an acrylic velvet, so heat fixing was out of the question.
After a very informative conversation with the lady who owns our local craft shop, I walked away with Original Hi-Tack All Purpose Glue – which is also available at Hobbycraft – which appeared to be able to stick anything together.
Carefully unpinning sections, glueing and repinning, I made quick work of fixing the patch to the sofa and was thrilled when I removed the pins and everything stayed where it was. The cat even tried to scratch it a bit and it stayed put.
Now the sofa looks as good as new – in fact, a family friend said it looks even better than before.
I have since invested in some Polarduck Anti Scratch Cat Tape, from Amazon – which is a huge roll of double-sided sticky tape – and after one disgruntled scratch, the cat now seems to prefer her scratching post, leaving the sofa alone.
Hopefully, when I remove the tape in a few months, we can embark on a scratch-free sofa life.
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Holly is one of Ideal Home’s content editors. Starting her career in 2018 as a feature writer and sub-editor for Period Living magazine, she has continued this role also adding regular features for Country Homes & Interiors and the Ideal Home website to her roster. Holly has a passion for traditional and country-inspired interiors – especially kitchen design – and is happiest when exploring the countryside and hills of the Lake District. A keen gardener, she is a strong believer that you can never have too many houseplants.
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