17 Aug 2011

The Rocking Chair

This wonderful rocking chair once belonged to my late great-grandmother, who gave it to my mum when she was a teenager, who gave it to me when I was in my teenage years. It used to be covered with a horrible green cotton fabric including some kind of tree application, so as soon as I had the chair in my room, I removed that monster. Unfortunately, and despite all its prettiness and vintage-style, the uncovered chair was immensely uncomfortable and impossible to relax in due to the solid rattan strings in the back. To solve the problem, I tried covering the chair with as many cushions as I could find, but it still wasn't any more comfortable (the cushions were moving around, falling off and I had really just created a mountain-valley climate with soft padding next to hard rattan areas). I had no other choice as to strip the old upholstery of its green yuck and cover it with something new. Luckily, by that time, I had already discovered Cath Kidston and knew they sold their lovely patterned fabrics by the metre, too, and without further ado, I purchased 2m of the Faded Flowers Cotton Duck fabric. It is described as "a firm Cath Kidston favourite. Vintage inspired, this versatile print will add a feminine touch to your home." Just what I needed...

The actual making of the new covers was relatively easy: Simply copy the outlines of the foam padding onto the fabric (2x) and add 2cm seam allowance. Cut the two pieces out of the fabric and place on top of each other (outside in), fix with needles all around at the seam allowance. Sew it together, leaving the straight bottom side open to insert the foam padding. Once you've finished, turn inside out, stuff the padding in and fit it into the cover. Fold the leftover seam allowance of the straight bottom side into the cover and stitch up manually. Ribbons on the top will help to tie the cover onto the chair. Should the inside padding be moving within the cover, add buttons in the middle and sew onto the cover, all the way through the foam padding.
Procedures for the top and bottom cover are exactly the same and once you've done one, the second one will be child's play :) The accessory cushion covers are actually made from what was left over of the Faded Flowers Cotton Duck fabric. But I'll explain how I made these another time, going into detail particularly over the cute little mini ball ribbons framing the cushion cases.

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