Monday, 9 May 2011

MAKE - Bed patchwork cushion

This is a cushion cover I made from bits of fabric I had saved in a box and some vintage embroidered cotton I bought at a car boot. I find cushions pretty easy to make if they are kept simple. So here are some tips if you don't know how.

1. First of all choose your cushion to cover. I chose a long rectangular cushion as I wanted it to go on my bed.

2. Choose your fabrics and lay across the cushion where it will sit in your home to see what you prefer colour and pattern wise. Think where you want the patches to go, or where you want the divides to happen. Once arranged, stand back as far across the room as possible and decide if it looks right, if not tweak until it does.

3. Measure your cushion from seam to seam. Add 2cms each side for sewing. (so 4cms to each length).

4. Find a table or floor space and lay out the fabric in the way you want it patched together. I also used an old white sheet underneath at the correct size as is easier to sew the patches onto and to see where the edges are if they overlap.

5. Pin the fabrics in place.

6. To add more detail to the design and to help secure the biggest patch (blue and white floral) I hand stitched a couple of lines with red embroidery thread.

7. Next, sew all the patches together, (with the backing sheet if you chose to use one) with a sewing machine set to straight stitch.

8. Cut out the same size rectangle for the back piece. I used plain white cotton as this won't show when sitting on the bed.

9. Work out which end you want the opening to be. I did mine on the right. Take one end of the fabric where it will open and fold it over backwards by 1cm, iron, then fold over again on itself by 1cm, then iron again, sew with sewing machine along this edge only. Do this for front and back pieces.

10. Iron both sides (front and back) and lay them on top of each other, outsides facing inwards. Pin in place all the way around making sure the 2 opening edges are together.

11. Sew the three sides together (not the opening edges you've just sewn) leave a 1cm margin around all edges. Once finished, pull it out the right way.

12. Now you can make the end ties. I used some of the same fabric on the end to make the ties so it matched. these can be about 17 to 20cms long, and you'll need 4. So cut 4 strips 20cms long and 4cms wide.
13. Fold the edges in as neat as possible by 0.5cm and iron (this can be a bit tricky), then fold them in again as above. Then stitch along the length. then turn ends over if they need neatening and stitch again.

14. Put the ties to one side while you sew the inner fabric tuck.

There is an inside flap of fabric that tucks in, kind of like you get in pillowcases so that you don't see any of the filler once it is tied up. This is the same height as the pillowcase (plus 2 cms) and about 14cms wide.

15. Cut a separate piece of fabric to this size and fold each edge over about 0.5cm and iron, then fold over again 0.5cm and iron in place. Check that the tuck-in flap will fit inside the pillowcase flat without scrunching up anywhere like below.
16. Sew around 3 edges of the fabric flap that will tuck in. Then tuck the fabric flap into the cushion cover so it is facing towards you (same way as front). Line it's right hand side with the edge of the back (white sheet side). Pin in place.

17. Tuck 2 of the ready made ties into the gap between the flap and back of the cushion cover by 1.5cms. Then sew the flap into the inside back of the cushion cover. Sew over the tie end that is tucked in either in a small square or a diagonal cross.

18. Next sew the last 2 ties to the inside of the front side's opening by 1.5cms. Make sure they are lined up with the back 2 already sewn in. Also sew the ends tucked in with a square or cross.

19. Iron whole cushion, tie off any remaining loose ends and you have a cushion for your bedroom!

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