How to make a patchwork seat cover

Give new life to an old chair with our step-by-step guide

Brighten up your living room for 2010 by crafting a patchwork seat cover for an old chair.

Follow Country Homes & Interiors’ step-by-step guide:

What you’ll need

* Paper (for pattern)
* Denim fabric (we used Denim Blue, ref PF50125 660, £34 a metre, Baker Lifestyle and Worn Indigo Denim, £31.50 a metre, Lena Proudlock, and denim offcuts)
* Matching thread
* Stitch-on hook and loop fastener

1) Make paper patterns for the 5 sections of the cover: the seat
and four 10cm-deep ‘skirt’ pieces to fit along the front, back and two
sides of the seat.

Using the illustrations as a guide to making your
patterns, note that: the back corners of the main seat piece are shaped
around the two uprights of the chair back; the back skirt extends only
as far as the inside edges of the two uprights; and the side skirts
extend around the uprights to overlap the back skirt by 4cm (see
photograph and illustration).

The back corners of the main seat piece are shaped around the two uprights of the chair back  Illustration: Michael A Hill

2) Add 2.5cm all round on all paper pattern pieces and cut out.

Decide on your fabrics for the patchwork on the main seat piece and cut
out adding 1cm all round. Join the pieces together taking 1cm seams.
You may want to make some pieces extra large to incorporate pocket or
trim details if using old pairs of jeans or jackets.

Trim and
press open seams as you work until you have joined up enough denim
sections to make up the shape of the pattern piece. Once your patchwork
is complete, you may need to trim around the edges to match the pattern
piece as closely as possible. Piece together the four side sections in
the same way.

4) Stitch a 2.5cm hem along the back corners
of the main seat piece where the cover will fit around the seat
uprights. Right sides facing and matching raw edges, stitch the back
skirt piece to the main seat piece and trim and press open seam

5) Join the front skirt to the two side skirts
along the short ends in the same way. Right sides facing and matching
seams at the front corners, stitch the three-piece skirt section to the
remaining raw edges of the main seat piece.

6) Stitch 2.5cm
hems along the bottom edges of all the skirt pieces, as well as the
side edges of the back skirt and the top and side edges of the side
skirt pieces where they extend to the back of the chair.

Slip stitch lengths of hook and loop fastener in place on the wrong
side of the side skirt pieces and the right side of the back skirt piece
(as shown in the illustration below).

Using a damp
cloth, give the chair cover a final press before placing on the chair.
Push the back skirt between the two chair uprights and wrap the back of
each side section around the uprights to overlap the back skirt. Press
the hook and loop fasteners together to secure.

Wrap the back of each side section to secure the cover to the chair  Illustration: Michael A Hill

Looking for more ideas? Why not head to our dedicated craft pages. And for more inspiration follow Country Homes & Interiors on Facebook and Twitter.

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