I bought 20 yards of this black velvet:
|Antique Cotton Velvet @ Fabric.com|
It's rated at 100,000 double rubs, which is a good rating for sofa upholstery, and it was only $10.98/yard. With free shipping , a 15% off coupon code, and tax, it totaled $200.19. (19 cents over budget, but we'll live.)
I decided on cotton velvet because 1.) I'm pretty sure the original fabric is cotton velvet and it's lasted the last 40 years (admittedly, it is on its very last legs); 2.) I've been happy with the way the current velvet has stood up to my six year old; and 3.) Velvet was recommended as a good-wearing fabric on several sites I checked.
Next step: I've talked to a couple of upholstery shops and like one in particular. So we're going to go check out his work in person and hopefully drop off the sofa sometime next week once the fabric comes in. Not sure what we're going to do without a sofa for 2 weeks. Maybe I'll get one off of Craigslist and then resell it? Or just use one of the 300+ chairs we have floating around the house.