Modern Upholsterer Apprenticeship Course

As a Modern Upholsterer, you will be creating items of soft furnishings ranging from stools/headboards to full sofa suits. In each job role, you will be working with a vast range of materials, you will cover or re-cover items with materials such as leather, suede or cotton.

These jobs are ideal for those that enjoy practical, hands-on work and have an interest in style and design, plus a good eye for detail. You’ll also need to be patient and persevere to make sure your work is finished to a high standard.

Within our course at Webs Training, there are a range of projects, you will be able to create these projects to your own taste by choosing your own styles of materials and even have the potential to take these home.


Subsectors courses following upholstery

  • Sewing machinist and cutter.


Skills, interests and qualities

  • Good practical skills and working with your hands

  • A keen eye for detail

  • Good eye/mind for design/styles and matching materials

  • To be able to work to high-quality standards

  • Ability to work in a busy working environment

  • Good safety-awareness

  • Self-motivation and the ability to work without supervision


What training will I receive?

As an apprentice Modern Upholsterer, you will be employed in an industry which offers training in a variety of skills and methods which are essential to the manufacture of domestic and commercial furniture. You will be employed by a sponsor company, here you will be in full-time employment and be paid an hourly rate. You will then be required to attend Webs Training throughout the duration of your course.

The training on offer is varied and dependent on the job role, but may cover the following: Use of a large range of tools and equipment, to enable you to carry out tasks, you will be trained to understand and acquire the basic skills of upholstery such as, how to apply a top fabric, what methods are used to finish a job, such as using studs/decorative nails.

You will also undertake practice projects such as footstools, storage boxes, bedroom chairs, sofas, and chairs. Full guidance and training on all methods and techniques are provided, including more advanced techniques such as deep buttoning. You will also get to pick a final project of your choice (this could be your chance to recover your sofa from home.) There are also subsectors to this apprenticeship standard.


When do I attend training?

Training can be organised to suit the needs of employers and can consist of attending on a day release (One day a week). Block release (One full week, five times a year) Or in house. (All training is done in the sponsored company).


What will I get at the end of my programme?

  • Throughout your training programme at Webs Training you will have received trade-specific training on the skills and techniques for you to be able to produce modern items of furniture
  • The knowledge and understanding of how to produce pieces of furniture from start to finish, and with the knowledge of the resources required, along with what else is available
  • You will have a good understanding of the industry
  • The skills and basic experience to work in a high-quality industry
  • Improved functional skills (where applicable)
  • Projects that you have produced can be taken home


On successful completion you will have achieved the Level 2 Standard in Modern Upholstery


Progression opportunities

  • You can progress through onto an Apprenticeship Standard Level 3 diploma in furniture (Design and development).
  • Within this course, you will go into more depth when looking at the furniture, you will gain more advanced upholstery skills, and you will also get to design, prototype and develop your own project!
  • You may also develop skills from the other departments within your sponsor company, such as supervision or development.


How do I apply?

There are several ways to apply:

Contact the recruitment team on 0115 9677771 or write to us at WEBS Training Ltd, The Poplars, Wollaton Road Beeston NG9 2PD

Submit an enquiry via the website Enquiry Form

Email us at


Details of standard

A Modern Upholsterer is a skilled and methodical individual capable of creating ergonomic and comfortable furniture using both traditional and modern techniques, materials and fabrics to produce aesthetically pleasing and fit for purpose consumer products.

As an Apprentice Modern Upholsterer, you will complete all the core requirements set out below and then the set number of trade requirements for the chosen route.


Core Requirements

As part of the standard you will be required to undertake a number of core requirements around the knowledge, skills and behaviours expected of a furniture manufacturer. These will reflect the sector and the organisation you work covering such things as health & safety, your organisation, industry knowledge, customers, quality standards, maintaining equipment and behaviours expected of you in the work place.


Trade Requirements

In order to ensure sufficient flexibility to meet the needs of the industry whilst maintaining the rigour of every single apprenticeship within it, Modern Upholsterers will need to undertake five of the following requirements, at least two must be Group A.


Cut Fabrics and Components Prepare and cut fabric and components used in upholstery.
Frame Construction Construct upholstery frames to specification. Understanding the methods used to construct frames.
Sewn / Seamed Components Produce sewn / seamed components by hand and through the use of machinery.
Suspensions and Foundations Select materials for suspensions including springs, pocket springs, sprung units and webbing. Apply these to frames using appropriate modern or traditional methods, tools and equipment.
Upholstering Measure and cut fabric, fit, apply and finish top covers including fluting, pleating and buttoning.
Loose Covers Cut, sew and fit loose covers to specification.
Repair Repair joints and frame ready for re-upholstery and revive and polish show-wood frame.



Jigs and Templates Use and maintain jigs and templates. Jigs are used to ensure repeatability and accuracy in the production of furniture. These can be hand held or mounted on workbenches.
Produce Templates Determine details of templates from specifications, mark out, measure dimensions and cut templates using appropriate tools and equipment.
Resolve Faults in Leather Deal with scuffs, scratches, stains, burn marks, water marks and discolouration in leather.
Filling Materials Select and fix filling materials. Understand different types and fixing methods.
Fit Mechanical or Electrical Components Assemble, fit and quality assure components.
Cushions and Padded Items Measure and cut fabric; sew components to produce scatter, box and bolster cushions.
Frame Finishes Finish and polish show-wood frames, apply stains, sealers basecoats and finishes.
Trimmings and Finishings Position and fix trimmings and finishings. This includes castors, valances, borders, skirts, dust covers and feet and legs.
Strip Down Furniture Strip back existing upholstery to frames. Understand when and how to retain original foundation work.



Maths and English Requirements

For apprentices that have not yet achieved level 2 English and maths, they must achieve Ievel 1 English and maths and take the test for level 2 prior to taking their endpoint assessment.