Slipcover Pin Fit Photos of a Simple Design

Pin fitting a simple slipcover for most classic armchairs takes only 6 steps. Get inspired! See how I pinned each section of my outdated swivel chair to create an easy canvas cover.

Natural Canvas Modern Slipcover

Earlier this year I gave the fussy, old swivel chair you see below a big makeover with a very simple, contemporary slipcover. I walked you through my 3-step design process in this post.

Since that blog post focused only on design tips, I thought it would be fun to follow-up with some of the photos from my pin fitting.

With a quick look, you will be able to get a good idea of how the slipcover fit took shape in only six steps.

Old navy blue floral upholstered swivel armchair.

For this project, I used the right side out pin fit method. It’s my favorite! If you are new to slipcover making you will love how easy it is. The process goes like this:

1. Pin and cut the slipcover on your furniture with the right side of the fabric facing out.

2. Trim and notch all of the seam allowances.

3. Then, remove the slipcover, unpin it and sew the sections together in a specific order.

Chair deck showing slipcover pin fitted.

Step 1: I start all of my slipcover projects by pin fitting the deck, and this case the nose, too.

I usually pin the deck area with one piece of fabric. But for this one I had to piece it with another fabric because I was running low on the natural canvas. It happens!

Natural canvas chair slipcover pinned arm.

Steps 2, 3, and 4: Next, I pinned the inner back. Then, the inner arms and finally the outer arms.

Check out those rolled arms. They bow — curved on both the inside and outside — and they have a slight scoop on top.

Chair outer arm pin fitted with natural canvas.

As you might imagine, fabric doesn’t drape smoothly over bowed, scooped arms. It tends to ripple.

The trick is to make little relief cuts to release the fabric tension on the outer curved seam. Relief cuts help the fabric easily bend around a curve and lay flat.

If you run into this on your chair, do this:

Smooth and pull the fabric taught over the top of a small section of the arm, pin the seam and then make a relief cut. Keep repeating that process as you work your way up the arm in small sections.

Washed canvas fabric pinned to chair.

Step 5: Once I completed pinning the inner and outer arms, I pinned the front arms. In the photo above you can see how all of the inner sections fit nicely together.

Chair side with pin fitted canvas slipcover.

Step 6: The back section of the chair is always last to pin fit. I pinned the back piece to the outer arms at the corner seams and to the top of the inner back.

Chair with pin fitted cotton canvas slipcover.

Above is the completed pin fitting.

Before I removed the pinned slipcover from the chair, I did these 3 things:

  • Trimmed all seams to 3/4 inch
  • Notched the seam allowances
  • Marked the hem
New natural canvas slipcover for old chair.

And, here is the sewn slipcover. Notice how the fit and shape of the finished slipcover look exactly like my pin fitting. That’s the beauty of pinning right side out!

I hope this pin-fit photo album inspires you to create your own simple slipcover.

Thanks for following! –Karen


  1. i NEED TO LEARN THIS! Beautiful work. How do you know how to sew it back together?

      1. I would love a video! I made slipcovers for two overstuffed chairs last year so I’m one or two steps away from being a complete novice but there were some design details I didn’t handle well. (Where the back of the arms met the chair back, for example. The overstuffed-ness made a deep crevice there. Tuck some in? Skim over it? Half way between those options?) I’d also love to see how you trim the seams so the seam allowance is exactly the same. Count me in 100% for a video.

  2. I agree with the other comments about the video! Seeing you work through each step would be so helpful. The difference a slipcover makes is amazing – this chair looks much better!

  3. I love the detailing of all your slip covers! Are the seam top stitched or piped on this one? I cant tell? A huge fan from Western Canada

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