Chair covers from kitchen towels

While furnishing the new house, I’ve kept my eyes open for affordable furniture that might help fill in gaps and make the home more comfortable.

One of the things I’d like for each master bedroom is some kind of chair. When we got the smallest coziest master bedroom finished, we decided it would indeed fit a chair, but it needed to be a small one.

My friend had an old chair that she was getting rid of that fit the bill perfectly size-wise.  It was comfy and had a nice shape.  But it needed recovering.  When offered the chair, I accepted it happily, and began thinking of what I might like to use to recover it.

A day or so later I happened to spot some kitchen towels on clearance at Target for a couple bucks each.  When I grabbed the towels, some smooth cotton with a pattern, and some terry cloth, I had dish-drying on my mind.  But at home I happened to set the towels on the new/old chair, and suddenly my wheels were spinning.

The pattern on three of the towels was appealing, and blended well with the colors I already had in that master bedroom. What if I made a chair cover out of the towels?

I started draping the towels across the chair, and discovered that two towels, sewn together lengthwise like a pillowcase, would exactly fit the straight back of the chair.  The third towel covered the top and front of the seat with a little to spare.  But I didn’t have enough of the patterned towels to cover the sides of the seat.  What to do?

I liked the smooth feel of the patterned towels better, but the terry cloth towels I’d also bought were a match color-wise.  I decided to see if I could use just enough of the terry cloth to put together a chair cover.

I started by sewing together the two towels to cover the back of the chair, trimming them just a bit shorter to fit.  Then I attached the seat towel to the back piece

The scraps that I’d cut off the other towels were long enough to cover part of the sides, but not all.  I filled in the rest of the space with narrow strips cut from a terry cloth towel.

It took more than a little fiddling, and lots of pinning and re-pinning to make it all go together smoothly.  I went bit by bit, sewing a few seams, and then trying it on the chair again, to make sure things fit as I intended.  I also used the finished edges of the towels as much as possible to be the bottom edges of the slipcover since that saved a bit of sewing.

I was very happy with the end product– a cute seat cover made from four towels, at the cost of $8 and a little less than two hours of sewing.

And I discovered an unexpected benefit from my little stripes of terry cloth.  That fabric was a little more stretchy than the patterned fabric, which allowed me to end up with a snug-fitting cover that was stretchy enough to be removed for washing, should that be needed down the road sometime.

This success so emboldened me that I’m now thinking of making slip covers for a couple of my old couches, maybe using painter’s drop cloths?  Anyone else ever tried that?  Or seen a good tutorial?  I’d love to hear about it!

 

{ 2 Comments }

  1. I just love it! I learned to slip cover from Miss Mustard Seed’s tutorial on using drop cloth on a wingback. The tutorial is really good (YouTube) and it turned out so well. i bet you could watch the tutorial and apply it all to your sofas. 👌🏼

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