This tutorial builds on our simple envelope cushion cover tutorial, used with our new sewers on our 54 week sewing course. It takes the basic principles of an envelope style cushion cover to the next level, adding a border and turning the closure on the back of the cushion into a feature, with buttons and functioning button holes!
The label on your cushion may include its size, if not, pull the fabric along the top taught and measure it – this figure is the width of your cushion. Repeat along the left side of the cushion, this figure is the length of your cushion.
Width x length: ……… x …………
STEP 2 – FABRIC REQUIREMENTS
You can use almost any type of fabric for a cushion cover, fleece, flannels or knits will give your cushion a ‘hug me’ look, whilst home décor weight fabrics hold their shape, regular quilting weight fabrics work well too, and can be enhanced with the addition of iron on interfacing to give a crisp, luxury look to the cushion (if you are a beginner, I would start with home décor weight fabric or quilting weight fabric).
Width of your cushion + 7.5cm x length of your cushion + 7.5cm
………… x …………
Back Fabric (Top Piece)
Width of your cushion + 7.5cm x length of your cushion x 0.65 + 6.2cm
………… x …………
Back Fabric (Bottom Piece)
Width of your cushion + 7.5cm x length of your cushion x 0.65 + 5cm
………… x …………
If you are using regular weight quilting cotton, we recommend using iron on medium weight interfacing (woven or standard) to add definition to your cushion, or fusible fleece if you want to plump it up.
Front piece: size of the front fabric piece.
………… x …………
Back top piece: size of the back top fabric piece with 3.7cm taken off the length.
………… x …………
Back bottom piece: size of the back bottom fabric piece with 2.5cm taken off the length. ………… x …………
You will also need…
If you are using interfacing then iron it onto the back of your fabric pieces first (place on top of the back of your fabric, then place another piece of fabric or a tea towel on top, and iron into place). The interfacing pieces for the top and bottom back pieces are smaller than the fabric pieces. For the top back piece position the interfacing so that it lines up with the top, left and right edges (it will finish before the bottom edge). For the bottom back piece position the interfacing so that it lines up the bottom, left and right edges (it will finish before the top edge).
Place your back top piece of fabric in front of you, so that you are looking at the back of it. Fold the bottom edge up1.2cm and iron the crease. Fold the bottom up again, by 2.5cm and iron the crease into place (the raw edges should now be hidden).
Pin the folded section into place, making sure that the pins at a right angle to the fold line (see below) pins should be approx. 5cm apart.
Make sure your bobbin has cotton on it that matches or compliments your main fabric, and then sew the folded over section into place, approx. 19mm (3/4”) down from the outside edge (this type of sewing is called top stitching).
Now it’s time to add the button holes (on the hem you have just sewn). Measure in 3.7cm from each side, along the folded and sewn edge, and mark with a disappearing pen or pins. Measure the gap between your marks and divide it by the number of buttons you are using plus one (we are using 2 buttons and so divided the gap by 3).
Now measure in from your first mark or pin by the figure you just worked out, and make a mark, measure in from this point by the same amount and mark. Continuing measuring and marking until you get to the mark/pin on the far side.
Measure your button width, add 4mms or 2/8th inch – this will give you your buttonhole size. Mark the buttonholes on your cushion cover fabric – the centre of each hole should line up with each of the marks you made during the last step (DON’T forget to ignore the first and last pins/marks).
Use the buttonhole setting on your sewing machine to make your first button hole. Once sewn, use a seam ripper to cut the buttonhole open and check that the button will fit through. If you are happy with the size of the hole, carry on sewing the rest of your buttonholes, if not, go back and add extra length to your first buttonhole, you can cut through the first set of end stitches so don’t panic! Check against your button again, and when happy move onto the next buttonhole, adjusting its length before sewing.
Put this piece to one side.
Place your back bottom piece of fabric in front of you, so that you are looking its back. Fold the top edge down 1.2cm and iron the crease into place. Fold the top down again, by 1.2cm, and iron the crease into place (the raw edges should now be hidden).
Pin the folded section into place as before and sew into place, approx. 6mm (1/4”) down from the outside edge.
Sew around all four sides using a 6mm (1/4”) seam allowance.
Turn your cushion cover out so that you are looking at the outside of the cover. Iron flat, making sure the seam lines are along the edges, and the corners are pushed out. Pin the two sides of the cover together and sew a border 2.5cm in from each outside edge (see image below).
- Hand sew your buttons onto the back of your cushion cover, lining them up with the centre of each buttonhole, making sure you are only sewing the buttons to the back of the cover and not the front.
Fill with your cushion insert and do your buttons up – ta dah!
Why not try (tutorials coming soon!)…
- Adding piping, pom poms or ric rac to the outside edges of your cushion.
- Quilting the front panel – a great way to use up your favourite scraps.
- Adding binding to the outside edges for a super crisp finish.