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[uhp-hohl-ster, uh-pohl-] /ʌpˈhoʊl stər, əˈpoʊl-/
verb (used with object)
to provide (chairs, sofas, etc.) with coverings, cushions, stuffing, springs, etc.
to furnish (an interior) with hangings, curtains, carpets, or the like.
Origin of upholster
1850-55, Americanism; back formation from upholsterer
Related forms
reupholster, verb (used with object)
unupholstered, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for upholstered
  • It was carpeted and had easily moveable tables and upholstered chairs instead of desks.
  • If he has a few upholstered benches in his place he usually calls it a lounge.
  • The spokes are long desks, upholstered in faded blue leather.
  • Its gentler slopes are upholstered in boreal greens.
  • The vintage wall paneling and upholstered banquettes are still in place.
  • The seats were upholstered in an abstract blue pattern cribbed, maybe, from a stewardess's scarf.
  • At first, the three dancers shiver in puffy jackets that make them resemble upholstered chickens.
  • Its brick walls were edged with red-upholstered banquettes.
  • My favorite was a plane with overstuffed chairs upholstered in white leather.
  • The old office was musty and formal, with rich wooden bookcases and heavily sculpted furniture upholstered in leather.
British Dictionary definitions for upholstered


(transitive) to fit (chairs, sofas, etc) with padding, springs, webbing, and covering
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for upholstered



1853, back-formation from upholsterer "tradesman who finishes or repairs articles of furniture" (1610s), from upholdester (early 15c.), formed with a diminutive (originally fem.) suffix, from obsolete Middle English noun upholder "dealer in small goods" (early 14c.), from upholden "to repair, uphold, keep from falling or sinking" (in this case, by stuffing); see uphold.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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