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Slipcover Instructions!

24 March 2011



Hi! I'm Rachelle from the blog Adventures In Creating where I do everything from sewing to welding. I am thrilled to be guest posting on one of my favorite blogs. Thank you so much Cassity for this opportunity!


Today I'm going to share one of my recent sewing projects where I reupholstered this old lounge chair. It first belonged to my parents who bought it when they got married. They gave it to me when I got married and needed furniture for our new home. I always thought I'd reupholster it or slipcover it.



Well, after almost 5 years I finally got around to slipcovering it! And ended up with this:




I've never slipcovered anything before so first I did some reseach on slipcovering and read a few articles:

The Nester on her slipcover project

And I did a lot of searching for fabric. I found a great deal on the Dwell fabric on this website: http://www.onlinefabricstore.net/ in case you wanted to get some of your own. Someone also asked if the fabric is durable. It's an upholster grade fabric and is made of cotton. I haven't had it that long so I'm hoping it lasts a long time and continues to look good. I'll probably spray some Scotch Guard on it to protect it from stains. I'll give you any updates as they come!

Ok, enough talk down to business!

I started with some old sheets I bought at Goodwill. I wanted to make a templates to use for cutting out my nice fabric. Since I'm a first time slipcover-er I didn't want to waste precious fabric with mess ups.


I cut large rectangles out, then fit them snuggly around each section of the chair, pinning as I went. I wanted the original shape of the chair to show through so I pinned as closely as I could around the edges.







After I did that I trimmed any extra fabric edges to get about a 1.5" seam allowance I would to for my templates. I marked the templates so I would remember where each one was supposed to go.



I then used my templates to cut my Dwell fabric out. Using the sheet templates allowed me to line up the pattern how I wanted.

Then I repinned my new fabric templates inside out on my chair to get my slipcover shape.





Then sewed the whole thing up. It was a little cumbersome with all the fabric laying everywhere but I was afraid to unpin anything and loose my shape.



After I sewed it all up I refitted it on the chair to see how it fit. I pulled out a few seams that could use some refitting and stitched up a few spots that I had trouble getting the first time around.

The arm for example I pinned again and resewed.



Then is was time for the cushion, I thought that since I have done a few pillows in the past this would be easy. But it was time consuming and hard.

I traced the shape of the cushion onto the fabric leaving a 1.5" seam allowance.



To get the fabric allowance for the middle cushion thickness I used a piece of string and ran it all along the edge. Then laid it out on the fabric, measured a few inches on either side, and cut it out.

The hardest part was sewing along the T-Shape of the cushion. Other than that it wasn't bad.

I then pinned the fabric around my cushion in the same fashion as I did the chair, leaving an opening in the back.

Once I finally finished sewing (I've never sewn this much in my whole life!) I got to work on the bottom. First I cut off the outdated skirt.


Originally I was going to staple the fabric to the underside of the chair to give it a more upholstered feel. But in the end I just used pins to adhere it so I can take the slipcover off whenever it needs cleaning.



Slipcover before skirt tucked under

Though the pictures don't show it I ended up sewing a piece for underneath the cushion using some leftover sheet fabric.

Then I was all done!




I hope this has been helpful and gives anyone who was thinking of trying this themselves some courage. You can do it!

27 comments:

Pati March 24, 2011 at 8:24 AM  

Congratulations! Great job! and excellent results. I love the fabric you chose!

SheilaG March 24, 2011 at 8:50 AM  

This is amazing! Wow, and you used a patterned fabric for your first project- you got guts, girl! :)

laxsupermom March 24, 2011 at 9:27 AM  

Wow love the fabric pattern she chose! Great tutorial! Thanks for sharing it.

Cyn March 24, 2011 at 9:43 AM  

holy cow, i love it :D, I just don't have the patience to do it myself though.

Brit March 24, 2011 at 10:20 AM  

I have a beautiful chair just like this that sits in my basement and stares at me in all of its neon purple glory... just waiting for me to find a post like this... and a little courage!! Thank you! I think I could do this!!!

Barbara March 24, 2011 at 11:04 AM  

No way that was her first slipcover!!! Heck, I'm sending her a chair to do!! Fine work!

Anya Rudn March 24, 2011 at 11:19 AM  

Looks like a lot of hard work!
You did a fabulous job!

Visit me @
http://luckysparkle.blogspot.com

Your newest follower,
♥Anya

Shelia March 24, 2011 at 12:56 PM  

What a wonderful job! I loved the tutorial and am thinking about making a slipcover for a chair that's similar to yours! Yours looks like a professional did it.
be a sweetie,
Shelia ;)

marie March 24, 2011 at 1:49 PM  

Awesome job! It gives me the confidence to tackle my two chairs! Thanks for sharing the tutorial!
Therese

Hyphen Interiors March 24, 2011 at 6:15 PM  

Very well done for your first time! Impressive! You may have given me the courage to try it. (And, I'm a very new sewer.)

Emily Elizabeth March 27, 2011 at 8:30 PM  

Wow - awesome job! I love sewing, but slipcovering has always seemed too daunting for me. Thanks for taking the scary away!

Lori March 28, 2011 at 2:19 AM  

Wow! this is so great! I've been knocking around the idea of trying to sew a slipcover for a discontinued Ikea couch for about 2 years now but have been so chicken to try it. Your pictures are giving me renewed hope that it might be possible.

kim kruse - - - the sassy crafter March 28, 2011 at 9:21 AM  

Wow! What a difference! Congrats on making such a lovely and tailored slipcover. Speaking from experience, I know it's no small feat. I slipcovered a loveseat once and thought I might be buried alive in fabric!

I hope that it holds up well for you in the wash. That was the one drawback of mine. Over time, the seam allowances started to unravel and then some of the seams started splitting open. If I had it to do over, I'd either serge the seam allowances or maybe use bias tape to secure the raw edges.

Again, congrats!

Mary Louise March 28, 2011 at 11:00 PM  

Wonderful- very inspiring. I've been needing to do this around my house.

Cari's Ark March 30, 2011 at 6:06 PM  

Thanks for the tute, I have been mustering the courage to tackle a chair a mistakenly let my teenager use in her room. Can I ask how much fabric you bought? How did you measure your chair?

Laura P March 31, 2011 at 8:47 PM  

This was a great post and the chair turned out great! I have always wanted to do some re-upolstering but have never tried it. You were very smart and brave to do this. Thank you for sharing your process - maybe someday I'll have the courage to try it for myself.

ellen April 2, 2011 at 4:01 PM  

Your chair looks great, and the idea of using thrift store sheets to make your pattern is excellent. I always used newspaper, but the sheets look like a much better way to go.

Inga´s Haven April 20, 2011 at 4:30 AM  

wow AMAZING - I wish i was talented enough to do this sort of thing :D congrats - new follower ;)

Nicole {Wonderful Joy Ahead} July 24, 2011 at 7:26 PM  

I found this tutorial through my friend's pin on pinterest. I have a chair that I haven't had the courage to slipcover, but now I'm definitely going to tackle it. I'll be using your photos as the guide. Thanks for posting!

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