What are the best slipcover fabrics?
I recommend medium to heavy weight fabrics that are durable, washable and have long lasting design appeal.
Below are my favorite slipcover fabrics. I’ve tested each one for shrinkage, coverage and durability. These are the fabrics I typically use with very good results for my client jobs and my own projects.
DENIM & TWILL
Yale Denim 12 oz., Natural http://bit.ly/1iIgFSt
You can’t beat the quality of this U.S.A. made denim for the price. I like everything about it: the perfect shade of un-dyed Natural, the good coverage and the casual-chic look. This fabric is not pre-washed but the crisp hand-feel will relax and soften when you pre-shrink it. Shrinkage: color Natural, 4″ on a one yard length and 1″ on the width.
Washed French Twill, Natural http://bit.ly/1g2GwzL
This heavyweight, supple denim is pre-washed giving it a “French Laundered” look and feel; perfect for creating cottage-style slipcovers. It’s soft, substantial and has a richer appearance than inexpensive lighter weight denims. Shrinkage: ½”on a one yard length, 0” on the width.
55% Hemp, 45% Organic Cotton Twill http://bit.ly/1mQrFkX
This medium-weight twill feels like bull denim except it’s beefier than most 10 oz. weights. The hemp fiber adds a little texture, which gives the fabric a rustic, casual look. Durable and offers good coverage. Shrinkage: 3″ on a one yard length, 2″ on the width.
Dockside Denim Bleached White, 11 oz. http://bit.ly/1xWExKX
This is the softest denim I’ve found in a heavy weight. It’s beefy, supple and the brushed surface makes it cozy feeling. The “bleached white” color is a very pretty soft white. Offers good coverage. Shrinkage: 4″ on a one yard length, 1/2″ on the width.
See the slipcover at I made with Dockside Denim: Theresa’s Sofa http://bit.ly/1j2ToqH
Cotton Duck 10 oz. Big Duck Canvas http://bit.ly/1cY1L8n
This is an economical duck cloth (canvas) that makes a casual slipcover of medium-weight. I like the hand-feel after it’s washed; the fabric softens up without becoming limp or extremely wrinkled. It takes on a relaxed, broken-in look. Go with color Natural for a painter’s drop cloth look. Shrinkage: White and colors 3″ on a one yard length, 1″ on the width and Natural 4″ on a one yard length, 2″ on the width.
See the slipcover I made with 10 oz. Big Duck Canvas for my bedroom chair.
Organic Cotton Canvas 10 oz. Big Duck Canvas http://bit.ly/UV3Co2
This canvas (duck) is certified organic from field to fabric under the Global Organic Textile Standard. The look is the same as Big Duck Canvas regular 10 oz. cotton duck but the hand-feel is softer and less stiff. No harmful chemicals are used to grow, weave or finish the fabric. The white color is achieved with safe peroxide instead of chlorine bleach. The fabric is “preshrunk” but you will still need to preshrink it. Shrinkage: 2″ on the length and no shrinkage on the width.
Cotton Duck 12 oz. Big Duck Canvas http://bit.ly/1ulUPqb
I like this heavyweight duck cloth (canvas) for simple White slipcovers that get a lot of use and frequent washing. It’s a good choice when lighter-weight White fabrics are not dense enough to cover dark colored upholstery. For best results, sew this thick canvas with an industrial machine and keep the slipcover seam details to a minimum to reduce bulk. Shrinkage: White 3″ on a one yard length, 2″ on the width.
Carr-Go Cotton Canvas 8 oz. http://bit.ly/NAucQ9
A good canvas for medium weight slipcovers that get moderate use and washing. It’s tightly woven with finer yarns than a utility canvas so the texture is a bit more refined. I love the look and feel of the sanded surface. It’s slightly suede-like, which gives the fabric a rich appearance. Overall good coverage but check White and Natural to make sure your upholstery color doesn’t show through. Shrinkage: 1.5″ on a one yard length and 1/2″ on the width.
Hemp Canvas 11 oz., Natural http://bit.ly/No2cze
A hard-wearing 100% hemp canvas with linen-like texture and a more upscale look than cotton canvas. It’s weighty but not stiff and offers very good coverage. This canvas softens nicely with wash and wear. The look is relaxed like washed linen. I’m always happy with the results when I sew with this fabric. Shrinkage: 3″ on a one yard length, 1″ on the width.
Brushed Cotton Canvas 13.6 oz., color Natural http://bit.ly/1pAbNls
A thick, soft and supple canvas with more of a chunky weave than basic canvas. The brushed surface takes on a cottony hand-feel after washed. Shrinkage: 4″ on a one yard length, 1″ on the width.
Home Furnishing Linen 11 oz., http://bit.ly/1bkKLF5
This is heavy weight linen with wonderful texture from Gray Line Linens. Color Oatmeal HF-0026 shown here. It’s supple and offers very good coverage. The look is casual-chic. The label says machine wash and natural dry but I put it in the dryer on low heat it comes out with soft crumple and a floppy feel. Shrinkage: 3″ on a one yard length, 2″ on the width.
See the sofa slipcover and chair cushion covers I made from this Home Furnishing weight linen in color Oatmeal.
Rustic Linen 7 oz. #4C22 http://bit.ly/QHP1Lq
This linen is more of a medium-weight than a heavy-weight as described by the retailer. It’s made with nubby, thick & thin yarns, which gives it a rustic texture. A good choice for shabby-chic style slipcovers that get moderate use. Color Mixed Natural shown here. Shrinkage: 4″ on a one yard length, 4″ on the width.