Thursday, October 3, 2013

Patio Cushions - Mini Tutorial

Hello everyone, you have probably been wondering where I went and why there have been no new posts on this blog, the answer to that is I have been doing all kinds of projects mostly for my other blog.  I really have not been doing much in the way of sewing since this summer has been all about painting and making over the interior of two of our bathrooms, which I decided last year all belong on another kind of blog not my sewing blog.  I did work on one project late in the summer which required some sewing; the makeover of our back patio, it came out really pretty with the addition of the change of colors through the recovering of our patio furniture cushions.  I actually needed to use my sewing machine for all of those, here is what I made without using any patterns.

First up were the two ottoman cushions for our chairs, they take a pretty good beating so I made sure to use a really sturdy outdoor fabric to prevent easy damage.  I measured each cushion and the openings then cut them to fit; I also measured how long I wanted the ties to be so the pads would not fall off the ottomans when we put up our feet to relax. I did not want a seam in the front of the cushion so I cut one long rectangle and stitched up the sides and a couple of inches across the top where I inserted the ties between the layers to secure them in place, then stopped and back stitched to create my opening.  Before turning I tucked the old cushion inside the cover to make sure it would fit and squared off the two front ends with pins, pulled out the cushion and stitched up the corners then turned it. I inserted the old cushion and stitched up the opening and I was all done!

Tip of the day:  Some outdoor fabrics tend to unravel where they are cut, try using pinking shears on all the raw edges to prevent that when you are sewing and when you turn the piece, works like a charm.

Next up was the really long bench cushion which was a bit more tricky; it was four feet long and a real challenge to get under the foot of my little machine and through the small opening, not to mention where to put the four feet of length as I sewed closed the opening.  I made the new cover for the pad the same way I made the ottoman covers only with no ties since the cushion seems to stay put without them.

Three cushions down and four more large ones to go!  I wanted to re-use the old cushions but I just could not figure out how to do it and get them through my machine to close them up, it was just too much work for my little sewing machine so I cheated and bought some new plain pale blue cushions on clearance at Target.  My big dilemma was what to do with the main fabric I purchased which tied all the other fabrics and accessories together?  I was also worried the pale blue chair cushions would get dirty really fast and look awful in a hurry, what to do?  Inspiration hit and I came up with an easy slipcover which would slide onto the cushion kind of like a cigar band, covering up the front and back of the cushion leaving the sides open and showing some of the pretty pale blue color which was also in the coordinating fabrics.  Now everything was pulled together and I got a really pretty looking patio and cushion covers I could take off easily and clean.

To make the slipcovers I simply measured all the way around the cushion then figured out how wide to make it once I turned under all the raw edges. Next I cut a long rectangle, hemmed the edges and joined the two ends making a long loop, stitched it and slipped it on the cushion placing the seam in the back at the cushion bend. Just that simple and a quick solution to a very vexing problem.

Thanks for letting me share my latest sewing project with you, I think everything came out lovely and the patio became a really bright and beautiful place to relax all summer. I plan to share more sewing projects with you especially since the holidays are on the way and I tend to do a lot more sewing this time of year.
See you soon.


You can see the full patio makeover on my other blog: Create, Upcycle, Decorate, Organize, just click on the link box on the right side of this blog page and it will take you over there, enjoy!!!

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