How To Make a Slipcover: Favorite Books, DVDs and Videos

Making a Muslin Slipcover Pattern

Long before I started my slipcover business, I thought the only way to make a good fitting slipcover was to first create a muslin pattern.

This meticulous pattern method made sense to me. It’s a technique I learned in fashion design school. Creating a muslin was the first step in turning my design sketches into custom-fit garments so why not use it to pattern my chairs and sofa?  Well, my finished slipcovers turned out beautiful but the process felt like it took f-o-r-e-v-e-r!

Today, I still make a muslin when I need to work through complex details. But for all of my other slipcover projects, I use pattern methods that give me great results with fewer steps.

There is more than one way to make a slipcover that’s for sure. Choose a method that works for you and dive in! Here are some of my favorite how-to resources:

Right side out pin fit method, my four-part tutorial series. This is the easy method I use for creating custom slipcovers for myself and my customers with great results:

Reverse Pin Fit Method is a popular pin fit method used by professionals and hobbyists.

Slipcovers with Shelley, How-To Slipcover DVD Here is another DVD that features the reverse pin-fit method. Shelley shows you how she patterns and sews an armchair slipcover with a skirt.  She pins the fabric inside out with welt cord in the seams and she does it fast!

Online Slipcover Classes at Blueprint This video class is a fun way to learn basic pattern methods and sewing techniques at your own pace.  I particularly like Kim Chagnon’s class, Custom-Fit Slipcovers: Couches & Sofas. Great for do-it-yourselfers who want to pick up a few professional tips and techniques.

Marge’s Custom Slipcovers, Easy to Make & Snug Fitting by Marge Jones. Her book is filled with techniques and tips for just about every aspect of slipcover making. If you are stumped by installing decking or confused by how to cover an attached back chair, get this book!

Muslin Pattern Method

The Complete Photo Guide to Slipcovers by Linda Neubauer. Easy to follow step-by-step instructions with a focus on creating a muslin pattern. Excellent photos. If you are a visual learner you will like this book. I especially like the sections on slipcovering a wing back chair and how to pattern and sew box cushions.

Half Pattern Method

Paul A. Carter’s Half Pattern Method:  Video Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 In this 3-part YouTube video series, Paul demonstrates step-by-step how to create a pattern by pin-fitting only one half of a chair.  You will also learn tips and techniques for cutting out the pattern and sewing the slipcover. I like this pattern method for symmetrical furniture.