Hello friends! Hope this post finds you well and enjoying the last days of summer before the back to school craziness starts!
As you’ll recall, my ongoing project this summer has been giving our dining room a Chihuly inspired makeover. I recently shared how I repurposed an 80s hutch into a modern sideboard / buffet / server. Continuing with my mission to lighten and brighten up the room, my daughter and I made neutral slipcovers for the two floral slipper chairs that were neither light nor bright.
(FYI: I don’t want to reveal the whole room until I’ve shared all the other projects, so these pics will be slightly bare!)
Do you have any slipcovers in your home?? Would you like to know how to easily make some?! While I may have fallen out of like with their dark floral pattern, I still LOVE our slipper chairs. We use them as extra dining room seating, and they are frequently used in the adjoining living room when we’re entertaining. They have a wide bottom ( 24 x 20 ), they’re sturdy, comfortable and portable. (Plus, who knows, maybe years down the road I’ll fall back in like with burgandy!) Deciding to keep the chairs and make slipcovers was a no brainer.
Because we were covering up a dark pattern (and wanted to avoid lining the slipcovers) we needed a heavy weight fabric with a tight weave. Unfortunately, the drop cloth I planned on using had too loose of a weave, and the floral pattern bled through. I ended up purchasing 4 yards of natural duck cloth at Joann Fabric. FYI: While I’m very happy with the outcome, the duck cloth was not the easiest fabric choice for the draping technique we used to make the slipcovers, because it had no give. So, before heading to the fabric store, consider WHAT you’ll be covering and HOW you’ll be covering it. You’ll thank yourself later 😉 !
We made the slipcovers out of three pieces of fabric: The chair back and seat front is one continuous piece of fabric and there are two side panels. That’s it! The first thing we did was drape the duckcloth over the chair, keeping a little fold of fabric that will be “tucked” between the seat back and seat bottom on the finished slipcover.
Before cutting the fabric length, we decided that our slipcovers would have a simple hem, extending 2 inches past the seat bottom. You’ll have to determine how you plan on finishing your slipcovers. You could add piping, a ruffle or pleated skirt, grossgrain ribbon, etc. When you see the finished dining room, you’ll understand why I opted for a simple slipcover! 😉 You can see the simple fold of fabric in the photo below.
The side panels were draped as well. If you don’t have an extra pair of hands like I did, a couple of strategically placed straight pins will help hold the side panel in place while you’re pinning it to the center panel. “Just keep pinning … just keep pinning”. Butt your pins next to each other around the side panel. When you’re happy with your pin placement, trim off the extra fabric, keeping one inch for seam allowance. I’m not going to lie to you. After pricking my thumb one too many times, I started cursing my chairs’ lovely rounded corners. The stiff duck cloth was harder to manipulate around the curves than a softer, more stretchy fabric would be. If your occasional chairs don’t have rounded corners, (and many don’t) YAY you!!
You are now ready to sew your seams; remove the pins; and pray it fits!! Once again, full disclosure. My sweet daughter is an accomplished seamstress, while I still struggle (and curse; and blame my high school home economics teacher for shaming me!) But lucky me. I’ve been nuturing, feeding and clothing (not to mention all the stamps in her passport) this child for 17 years. No one gets a free ride in this house. You bet I asked for her assistance. After the blood (pricked thumbs), sweat (Seattle heat wave and no AC!!), and tears (remember those rounded corners?!) I wanted these slipcovers to look good! My wompy seams would just not be good enough. 😉
IMO, a slipcover that can’t be thrown in the laundry has no value, so make sure you finish your seams with a zig-zag or similar stitch! After all your effort, you don’t want an unraveled mess the first time you throw them in the wash. 😀
The floral slipper chairs now have a sleek modern look. And these pillows!!
Who knew you could buy an embroidered pillow for $10?! You can if you shop Target’s clearance end caps! Seriously. I’m not sure I could make these pillows for $10. I’ll keep the pillow fabric I purchased for another project! 😀
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I don’t claim to be an expert on anything, but I do hope this post has inspired you to use what you have. We don’t have to replace perfectly good furniture just because we’ve changed wall colors. And if you really must buy new, learn from my past mistakes, and shop for neutrals!!
p.s. The “new” china cabinet is in place, styled, and oh so pretty. I’ll be sharing it next. Here’s a little teaser! :D:
Our Hopeful Home … French Country Cottage … Unique Junktique … Love of Home … Finding Silver Pennies … Between Naps on the Porch … Celebrate and Decorate … Confessions of a Plate Addict … Savvy Southern Style … The Boondocks Blog … Funky Junk Interiors … Coastal Charm … My Repurposed Life …
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