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Exclusive Project

Woven Cushion Cover

Creating projects that brighten up our homes or make stunning gifts are some of the most enjoyable projects as they are seen and used every day. This woven cushion cover creates a beautiful focal point for your sofa or bed as the finished effect is so effective. We hope you enjoy giving this project a go!

You will need:

  • 45cm/18” Square of fabric
  • 12cm/4 ¾“ x 45cm/18” piece of fabric
  • 35cm/13 ¾” x 45cm/18” piece of fabric
  • 12 strips of co-ordinating fabric 5cm/2” x 45cm/18” (cut on the straight grain)
  • 8 strips of co-ordinating fabric 2.5cm/1” x 45cm/18” (cut on the straight grain)
  • 45cm/18” Cushion filler pad
  • Sewing scissors
  • Complimentary sewing thread
  • Straight pins
  • Tape measure
  • Sewing machine
  • Iron
  • Invisible zipper approx 50cm/19 ½” in complimentary colour
  • Piping/invisible zipper sewing machine foot (optional)
  • 25mm bias binding maker (optional)
  • 10mm bias binding maker (optional)

Time to Make: 2-4 Hours

Skill Level: Intermediate - Advanced

Instructions:

  1. planning Lay out your fabric pieces. Measure them all carefully as the finished look of your cushion is greatly improved with accurate sizing.
  2. planning Using your bias binder maker, feed your wider strips of fabric through and press as it feeds out the other end. This will give you an even neat ribbon of fabric with the raws edges tucked underneath. Repeat this process with the narrower strips also. If you don’t have a bias binder maker of the right size you can achieve the same effect by turning up one side of the strip into the middle and pressing and repeating on the other side. This, however, takes a lot longer. The smaller strips can be a bit fiddly to do by hand but persevere. You may also find the smaller strips don’t lie as flat as the wider ones. If this is the case run along the pressed edges scoring with your finger nail or the edge of a ruler to help make the edges flat.
  3. planning Lay out the large square of backing fabric with the right side facing up. Mark where the halfway point is.Taking 6 of the wider strips and 4 of the narrower ones, start to lay then vertically along the square. Start with the outside wider ones, placing them 3cm/1 ¼” from the edges. Place a pin at each end. Place a second wider strip along the edge of the first ones and pin at each end. Position a narrower strip parallel to the wider ones leaving a 1cm/ ½” gap and pin at each end. For the central strips repeat this process by laying a wider strip either side of your centre line and pinning at each end, and then placing a narrower strip either side with a 1cm/ ½” gap either side, securiong with a pin. Your project should now look like the picture below.
  4. planning Now we start to weave our horizontal strips. Once again, mark the central line before starting. Follow the steps above starting with a wider strip at the bottom 3cm/1 ¼” from the bottom edge. Weave the strip in and out of the strips already pinned down. Once you have it in place pin at either end. Repeat with a second wider strip this time alternating the weaving in and out to do the opposite of the first strip. Position flat and pin in place. Thirdly repeat the process with a narrower strip, once again alternating the weaving (so this time doing the same weaving as the very first strip) and position with a 1cm/ ½” gap and pin at either end. Proceed to thread all of the strips through in this order: narrow strip, wide strip, wide strip, narrow strip, narrow strip, wide strip, wide strip. Don’t worry about the positioning of the strips at this point, just focus on making sure the weaving is correct, each time alternating the in and out pattern with each strip.
  5. planning Once all of the strips are woven in, we can now get the positioning right. Start at the top and edge the wide strip up so that it lies 3cm/ 1 ¼” from the top edge, and pin in place. Then take up the second so that it lies directly next to the top one and pin in place. Then the narrow strip, making sure to leave 1cm/ ½” gap between them. With the central strips position the wide strips so that they lie either side of where you have marked your central line. Pin at either end and position the narrower strips either side leaving a 1cm/ ½” gap each side, and pin. As you adjust the fabric strips into place, take your time to position them accurately. The fabric strips are only held at their ends and as such are liable to move around as you weave and position. Pay close attention to the positioning of each strip as you place it, making sure the others maintain their positions. Your project should now look like the picture below.
  6. Using a straight stitch, sew a line of stitching using your sewing machine all the way around the outside of the square, 0.5cm/ ¼” in from the raw edge, catching down the ends of the strips all the way around. Again, take your time over this step, taking care to make sure the ends of each strip remains perpendicular to the edge of the square and that the outer most edge strips don’t slip outwards and end up being caught in the stitching. Once you have sewn all the way around, remove all of the pins.
  7. planning Now it is time to create the zip fastening at the back. Attach the piping foot to your sewing machine. (This step can be done with an ordinary zipper foot but a piping foot will give a much better finish). Position the open zip along the bottom edge of the larger of the two remaining fabric rectangles. Position the foot on the machine to give a nice close stitch and sew along the edge of the zipper as close to the teeth as you can get. If you roll the teeth back with your fingers as you sew you will achieve a much closer stitch. Sew all the way to the end, leaving the excess tail of the zip hanging. We have deliberately used a longer zip than the cushion’s width in order to make this process a little easier. It means we can avoid having to sew around the bulky zip pull. Take the fabric out of the machine and pull the zipper closed. Take the top edge of the smaller rectangle of fabric and line it up along the other edge of the zip so that the sides line up with the sides of the larger rectangle. Place a pin in the fabric, fixing it to the zipper tape and undo the zip pull all the way to the bottom. Adjust your piping foot to the other side and repeat the process stitching the second side of the zipper the same as the first. When you have completed this step, do up the zip and check that both rectangles of fabric line up, that the fabric isn’t puckered along the edge of the zip, and that the seam is touching, thus hiding the zip. If your project doesn’t fulfil any of these checks, unpick the zipper and repeat the process until you have a neat finished zip. Press the seam over the zip so that it lies flat.
  8. planning Take your cushion back and lie it right side up. Pull open the zip a few inches to leave a gap. Then place the cushion front on top of the back so that right sides are facing. Line up the edges and start to pin the two pieces together around the edges. Again it is worth taking your time over this step. Although it sounds simple enough it is important to keep the tapes lying perpendicular to the edges of the cushion. I also recommend pushing the outer most strips in towards the centre of the cushion thus moving them away from the edges and reducing the risk of inadvertently catching them in the seams. Stitch all the way around the outside of the cushion approx 1cm/ ½” seam allowance, enclosing the original stitching you did to secure the strips. When sewing over the zip tapes at each end, I recommend reverse stitching over them a couple of times to reinforce the stitching at these points.
  9. planning Trim off the corners of the square. Also trim off the excess zipper tape. This is also why reinforcing the stitching at this point is advisable. By removing the tape here we are also removing the stopper bar of the zip. If the stitching comes undone at this point the zipper pull can come off of the tape completely resulting in a broken zip and a fiddly repair job. Turn the cushion through to the correct side, taking care to make sharp points at the corners. Press around the edges. The tapes will most likely be a higgledy mess at this point.
  10. planning Insert your cushion pad into the cover and fasten the zip. This will give the cover the plump fullness that now means you can tweak and reposition the strips into their correct places and the cushion filler will mean they stay where you want them to. You now have a beautiful woven effect cushion cover to enjoy.