Tag Archives: custom slipcovers

Slipcover Design: 5 Tips for Creating a Look You Love

One chair, four slipcovers. It’s amazing how each slipcover gives the same chair a completely different personality!

The wingback chair featured in these photos is mine. It’s worn & loved and, yes, it has 4 (or more) slipcovers. Years ago, I did a pin fitting on it and created a reusable slipcover pattern. Now, whenever I get the urge to update my decor, I pull out my pattern and tweak the details to design an entirely new look for my old chair.

Fabric choice and style details make all the difference in how your slipcover will look, fit and function. Here are 5 tips to help you design a slipcover you will absolutely love:

1. Enhance your furniture’s best features. Design your slipcover to show off one or more of the unique design elements on your chair or sofa such as arms, legs, arches, wings, etc.

2. Choose a slipcover fit that matches your personal style. Is your style loose and shabby chic?  Snug contemporary?  Or, relaxed and tailored?

3. Decide on slipcover details before you buy fabric. Consider skirt style – short, long, pleated, tailored or no skirt.  Think about seam finish such as top stitch or welt cord — self matching or contrast. Is your fabric a print that requires matching? Be sure to account for these details in your yardage calculation to avoid coming up short

4. Pick a timeless fabric and color for long lasting design appeal. Classic fabrics such as denim, canvas, twill, ticking, linen and matelassé in slipcover weights (10 to 14 oz.) will add longevity to your slipcover. Neutral colors offer the most flexibility when it comes to decorating.

5. Match your slipcover function to the fabric. When choosing fabric consider how you will use your slipcover. If your slipcover will get heavy traffic and require frequent washing go with a durable, heavy weight fabric. If you want your slipcover to be pet and/or kid friendly avoid brushed fabrics (pet hair magnet) and textures that snag easily. And, for occasional use slipcovers that are mostly decorative a medium weight fabric, solid or novelty, will work fine.

Rocker Slipcover in Natural Denim

Rocker Before Natural Denim SlipcoverSome furniture pieces, no matter how old and worn, are too sentimental to throw out.

My customer’s comfy little rocker has been a family favorite ever since her kids were young. It’s definitely a keeper!

Still in great shape after years of use, this sweet chair only needed an updated look with a custom fit slipcover.

Fabric: 100% cotton 12 oz. natural bull denim from Big Duck Canvas.

Natural Denim Rocker Chair Slipcover

Gingham Slipcover for Restoration Hardware Chair

Custom Slipcover for Restoration Hardware Chair

A customer from California sent me her old Restoration Hardware slipcover to copy.

Like most worn & loved slipcovers this one was torn and sagging in places. But because the overall fit was in tack I was able to duplicate it with only a few modifications.

Slipcover for Restoration Hardware Chair

I made this slipcover with Chester Gingham color Tobacco/Natural by Roth Tompkins.  You’ll see a Dry Clean Only label on this fabric but I wash and dry it without any problem. Expect high shrinkage during the pre-shrink and moderate soft wrinkles.

This is the same cotton gingham I review on my favorite fabrics list.  It’s a medium weight cotton so I lined the skirt for better drape and weight.

Slipcover Copy for Bensen Neo Sectional Sofa

Bensen Neo Sectional Slipcover

My New York customer, Jeff, sent me his worn slipcover to copy for his Bensen Neo Sectional. I love the simple, smart design of this piece.

The slipcovers for the body sections Velcro on creating a sleek, snug fit. No zippers, no welt cord, no skirt. I finished the seams with a clean edge stitch.

Custom Slipcover for Neo Sectional

Slipcover fabric: I used Dream Weaver by P/Kaufman in color Stone purchased from Sailrite. It’s a  sturdy 10 oz. polyester dobby weave with a supple hand-feel. There is a front and back side to this fabric as well as a directional nubby texture. No pre-shrink info — this slipcover copy is dry clean only.