How I made our envelope cushion cover

Finding cushion covers that suit our personality isn’t easy or cheap. Nik and I aren’t what is considered normal, and that includes our taste in soft furnishings. So in the end, we decided that I would make our own envelope cushion cover.

With this decision made, life actually got harder at first because now, I have so many options available to me. We looked at so much brightly coloured material. This would have been fine if Nik hadn’t wanted five large cushions with completely different, wild and wacky patterns. At this point, I discovered there is a small, really really tiny bit of normal in me as I prefer not to be quite so busy. I wanted a couple of plain cushions to break it up, preferably the same colour. 

So after months of going backwards and forwards looking at different coloured material I remembered that years ago Nik had bought a random bolt of material. I had never found a use for it until now. After digging it out of storage it turned out a good match for the colour scheme of Horatio. There was also enough to make three. This concept appealed to my normalness and Nik’s want for pattern. He couldn’t turn it down as he bought the blooming material. 

And so I have discovered that making cushion covers in a campervan is actually relatively easy and we have decided to do a how-to for anyone who is thinking of changing their cushions but can’t find any to their taste. 

Ignore the wonky cutting skills that you can see in the pictures, I’ve found that as long as I sow straight once I’ve put it all together the rest gets hidden when I fold it the right way and nobody gets to see that but me. 

materials
You will need – a sharp pair of scissors, measuring tape, ruler, something to mark your material with, tacking pins and needle and matching thread.
measure your material and mark
Measure out a square, on your fabric that is two inches bigger than your cushion pad and cut. My cushion pad is 24 inches so my square will be 26 inches by 26 inches. Cut a rectangle that is half the height of the square and keep the same width. Then cut another rectangle that is two-thirds of the height of the square but keep the same width. These two rectangles are going to make the envelope on the back of your cushion.
iron down edges
To tidy up the edges fold over half an inch on the top edge of the smallest rectangle, and the same on the bottom edge of your biggest rectangle, iron this into place and neatly stitch it down,(you’re in a camper, I know, so if you don’t have an iron tack the edges down before stitching).
lay all three sides together before tacking
Lay both rectangles on top of the square, with your patterned sides facing each other. Lay your largest rectangle below the smallest. Thay when you turn the cushion right way out this will be on the top.
stitch flap edges 4 inches on each side for stability
(because I’m making covers for large cushions the envelope at the back is very long and therefore becomes a bit flappy once all is finished and put together.So to combat this problem, once I’ve laid all my materials against each other for tacking I tack along the edges of my two back pieces, about 4 inches on either side and stitch them together before tacking to the largest square. I also add a popper in the middle at the same time. This gives the material a lot more stability.)
tack all material together and mark out a 24inche box to stitch along
Carefully tack all pieces together. (I use a coloured thread for tacking, it takes slightly longer. However, I don’t then have the worry of a pin dropping out and the dogs standing on it). Sew along all four sides. Make sure to go over yourself a few times where all three materials meet, for strength.

(Before sewing, measure out 24 inches in the centre of the material and draw a line all the way around using a ruler. This will keep me on a straight path).

cut corners before turning the right way, for pointed corners
When you have finished sewing cut the corners off, this will make sure that the corners are nice and sharp.
using your finger or a pencil push the corners out

Now turn the cover right way out and using your finger or something pointy push out the corners.

(Quick tip for material that frays)

Unfortunately, we picked two materials that frayed almost quicker than I could hand stitch it. After hours of searching for a solution a seamstress advised putting PVA glue around the edges of the material and leave to dry before stitching. Seamstress glue is available. however, it comes in a small bottle that barely does one cushion of this size. The cost is about ¬£6. My seamstress friend told me that this is what all the ladies she knows does ūüėČ and it works a treat.

And that’s it, a cover with no zips that can be easily removed for washing that suits your tastes. 

If you have enjoyed this post perhaps you will enjoy reading about our experience of building our own campervan

8 thoughts on “How I made our envelope cushion cover

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