Dining Room Chair Covers: Sew or Staple

 

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

Recently my husband I bought a set of Ikea Borge chairs for our dining room. The chairs looked great but I knew the white canvas seats the come with wouldn’t last long in a house with two little boys and frequent dinner guests! I did some searching online and came to the Harts Fabric website. After looking at their amazing selection of fabrics and laminated cottons, I contacted Harts to see if they’d be interested in partnering with me for this post. Luckily they were and I chose this great Riley Blake BPA Free Aqua Hexies. That fabric is now out of stock but they still have the yellow in stock along with a huge selection of other laminated cottons! Here’s an image of just a small selection of the ones they have.

HartsFabricLaminated

I tried covering the chairs two ways so I’ll lead you through the process for either stapling the fabric directly to the chair seat, or sewing a slipcover with elastic. These instructions include measurements specifically for the Ikea Borge chairs, but they could be modified for whatever chair you have.

Stapled Seat Cover

Let’s begin with the easy one, stapling! I used a staple gun with 1/4″ staples. For each seat, cut a rectangle 22″ wide (the fabric total width is 44″ so you can get 2 widthwise) by 20.5″ long (this measurement is along the selvage edge). These measurements give you 2″ to wrap around the back of the chair and 2 1/2″ for the other 3 sides.

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

To begin, lay the top of the seat against the wrong side of the fabric. Position the 22″ side of the fabric just beyond the screw holes at the back of the seat and place one staple in the center. Then put 2 more staples to either side of the center one for a total of 5 staples about 1 1/2″ apart. Hammer down any staples that are sticking up at all. Any of the photos in this post can be clicked on for a larger view.

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

Stretch the fabric to remove any wrinkles and staple it to the front of the chair with 5 staples starting in the center and moving out to the sides 2″ apart. Then stretch the sides and do a row of staples on each side, starting in the center and moving out to the sides for a total of 5 staples 1 1/2″ apart.

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

Next staple down the front corners. On the back of the chair, first fold one piece of fabric tight toward the corner and staple down. Fold the other flap toward the corner and staple down. Next take the triangular flap you’ve just created and pull it tightly toward the middle of the chair and staple it down. From the top it will look slightly rounded and have 1 small fold on each side of the corner.

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

Last, staple down the back corners. This is a little tricky as there is a notch cut out for the back of the chair. From the back of the chair, fold the fabric from the back edge of the seat toward the middle of the seat and staple in place. Then fold the fabric from the side of the seat toward the middle until it’s nice and tight. Staple into place. Then take the triangular flap you’ve just created, pull it tight and move any wrinkles into the center of the notch in the seat. Staple into place. When finished your fabric will look nice and smooth with no wrinkles! If you’d like, trim off any excess fabric corners that are sticking out.

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

 

 

Sewn Slipcover Seat Cover

This method took a bit more work. If you are using non-laminated fabric it’s nice that it can be removed to wash, but for these particular chairs you would have to remove the 4 screws holding the seat down before you could remove it. To use this method, first print out my free pattern (this link will open a pdf in a new window you can save or print). Pattern was designed using Ikea Borge chairs purchased May 2015, just in case they change the style in the future! Match up the stars in the pattern and tape the five pattern pages together. To use this pattern your fabric will need a small amount of give so you can stretch it tightly over the corners of the chair. It’s a little tighter than the slipcover that comes with the chair so you’ll have a nice smooth top with the laminated cotton. If you use the pattern, try making just one cover first to make sure it’ll work with your fabric!

To stabilize the fabric, either use a serger along all the edges or a sewing machine to do a zigzag stitch close to the edge. Then fold the fabric on each side (but not the corners) under by 5/8″ and sew with a 1/2″ seam allowance. This will form the casing for elastic. In the photo below you can see I used a roller foot to help the laminated cotton glide more smoothly through my sewing machine. If you don’t have one, you can try putting matte finish Scotch tape on the bottom of a regular sewing foot to keep it from sticking to the fabric.

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

On the wider side of the fabric (the front of the seat), bring right sides of the corners together and sew with a 1/2″ seam allowance from the fold to just before the casing and backstitch to secure.

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

On the two remaining corners (the back corners), bring the notched out section of the corner right sides together and sew from 1/2″ away from the edge on the fold, down to the edge of the fabric.

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

Thread 3/8″ elastic through the casing on all 4 sides. Use a nice firm elastic with  around 50% stretch (a 4″ piece will stretch to 6″ before it starts to resist). Start in the back corner and leave at least 5″ sticking out at both the start and finish. Fit the cover around your seat and pull it snug in all directions. Smooth out any wrinkles, pull the elastic tight and then tie it in a knot. If you don’t have firm elastic, string will also work if you tie it in a tight bow so you can un-string it later to get the cover off.

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

 

Comparing Both Methods

Both methods worked well and the final seats look nearly identical. Personally, I preferred the staple method as it was faster, easier to get a nice smooth seat with no wrinkles, and uses less fabric. And, with the laminated cotton I’ll never have to take it off to wash, just wipe clean, so laundering isn’t an issue! I also think the stapled seats may also be a bit more stable as I’m a little concerned that all of the thread holes in the sewn version may make it more prone to rip with heavy usage. But, again, these differences are minor enough that in the final chair no one can see a difference! So far we’ve used both versions for the last week with a birthday party and house guests and they look great! The fabric hasn’t stretched to show any wrinkles and the tops all look nice and shiny.

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

Thanks again to Harts Fabric for supplying the laminated cotton for this project! Make sure to check out their selection of not only laminated cotton, but also quilting cottons, apparel fabrics, patterns and more. If you’re in the Santa Cruz, CA area you can go check out their store in person!

 

HartsFabric

 

 

Teacher Appreciation Pencil Pouches

Teacher Appreciation Gift: Pencil Pouches | Craft Buds #teacherappreciation

At the end of each school year I like to give my son’s preschool teachers a small gift. I’ve given them each a tote bag, special scissors, and this year I did pencil pouches with notepads and pens. For the pattern I used Lindsay’s quilted boxy pouch pattern (free with a free account on Craftsy). As written, the pattern makes a large boxy pouch. To make the smaller, flat pencil pouch I made a few changes and used a 9″ zipper, and cut the fabrics to 9″ x 9.5″ (the zipper side). Then I followed the instructions as written and stopped at step 7, which is right before you make the boxy corners. That method worked great and the final pouches are 4 1/4″ x 8 3/4″, the perfect size for pencils and pens!

Teacher Appreciation Gift: Pencil Pouches | Craft Buds #teacherappreciation

 

I like to include a “Handmade by…” tag on my items so the recipient of the gift knows that it’s a handmade item! I made the tags using a stamp from Expressionery and the customized notepads (name blurred for privacy) are also from there. The aqua flower fabric is Amy Butler Daisy Chain (now out of print), the pink dots fabric is Marble Delight Pink by Josephine Kimberling for Blend Fabrics (Natural Wonder collection) and the lining is Painted Woodgrain Grey by the same designer, also for Blend Fabrics (Riding Hood collection).

Online Sewing Class

Up & Coming Designer: Colette Moscrop

This post was written by Amy of www.13spools.com as part of our “Up & Coming Designer Program”, where we introduce you to some awesome, small-time fabric designers we’ve found! Read the program announcement here.

ColetteImage


Can you describe what your process looks like and what materials you use in your work?

My hand-printed textiles are designed and screen-printed in small runs in my home studio. My original hand drawn illustrations are translated from my sketch book to screen using a number of methods including traditional hand-cut stenciling. I print using water based inks in rich, bright colours that I mix myself to achieve perfect vibrant shades. It is this combination of colour blends and their juxtaposition in single or over-printed patterns, that creates the depth and space that is distinctive to my finished printed design. The base cloths I use are all natural fabrics – cotton, linen and linen/cotton blends, the textural characteristics of these enhance the quality of the finished piece. The environmental benefits of using 100% natural and sustainable fabrics is an essential consideration in my work.

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Where do you find inspiration for your work?

With a sketch book and camera close to hand, my inspiration can come from anywhere; crumbling architecture, the colours of nature, the ring left by a coffee cup…. I am drawn to pattern and colour and love to explore and interpret what I find. I don’t always know where the journey will take me, fluid, organic, geometric or abstract – I play around with pattern, scale and layout. I like uncomplicated, simple patterns that may start out as somewhat irregular in my initial rough sketches, but they will then surprise me when they come together perfectly in repeat and I arrive at a design that I love.

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I’ve been developing my own style over the last few years and I’m producing a selection of clean, modern designs that retain my original hand-drawn elements.

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How did you get into fabric design & printing?

My love affair with the creative process has been with me since I was a little girl. I spent many hours fascinated, watching my Mum make clothing for my brother and I. From an early age, I was at my happiest cutting, stitching and playing with fabric.

RaspberryButterflies2

I studied Fashion, Textiles and Jewellery at Art College; my first job was an exciting position making couture fashion accessories for a small designer company. My love of screen-printing came about after I attended a workshop by Lu Summers, arranged by the London Modern Quilt Guild. I was completely hooked by the process and started experimenting at home. I’ve received lots of advice and guidance from my brother, who is a long established screen printer (though not on textiles), which enabled me to improve my technique.

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My work is a reflection of my love of design, the screen printing process and my passion for creating handcrafted textiles. I can think of no better compliment than a panel of my fabric being chosen to be lovingly incorporated into another’s creation.

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If you loved these photos of Colette’s work, I encourage you to check her out – and buy her fabrics!! Here’s a fantastic list of places where you can find her:

BluesFabric

And don’t forget that you can look forward to, and follow, my (Amy’s) projects showcasing our up & coming designers’ fabrics in tutorials, pillows, quilts, and more at www.13spools.com!

Fabric Tissue Box Cover

Sew a tissue box cover for any size box | Craft Buds

Here’s a great project for that special fabric you’ve been hoarding so you can see it every day! You won’t need much fabric and you can even use a fat quarter. In all you’ll need:

  • Exterior fabric, quilt batting or fusible fleece, and interior fabric, approx. 13″ x 17″ each depending on the size of your tissue box
  • 1/2″ double fold bias tape (approx. 40″ inches)

To start, get an empty box of your preferred tissue type.Carefully poke a hole in the bottom with your scissors and cut out the bottom. Then cut each of the 4 corners so it lays flat. Remove plastic from the top where the tissues come out. Now you’ve got your tissue box template!

Sew a tissue box cover for any size box! @ Craft Buds

Place the cardboard template on top of your exterior fabric, and fabric for the interior (I used white muslin, this fabric won’t show). You’ll want to cut the 2 fabrics flush with the outer edges of the tissue box (the part that will form the bottom), and leave a 1/4″ seam allowance at each of the 4 corners. For the inside rectangle where the tissues come out, don’t worry about rounded edges and cut a rectangle leaving 1/4″ distance from the edges of the tissue box.

Sew a tissue box cover for any size box! @ Craft Buds

Cut a layer of batting the same way you cut the fabric, except at the 4 corners you’ll want to cut 1/4″ inside the template to reduce bulk in the corner seams. Now you can either cut across the corners of just the batting layer to create 5 separate pieces and allow for sharper corners, or you can leave it together and sew along the fold through all the layers.

Sew a tissue box cover for any size box! @ Craft Buds

Next, you have two options with your quilt batting or fusible fleece. Option 1: Sandwich the batting between the 2 layers of fabric and sew along the dotted line in the diagram below so the final box cover has nice crisp corners. Option 2: Cut along the white line in the diagram below only on the quilt batting or fleece layer so you have 5 separate pieces. If using fusible fleece, fuse the pieces between your 2 layers of fabric. Cutting these lines will help the fabric fold better.

Sew a tissue box cover for any size box! @ Craft Buds

Snip the 4 corners of the tissue box opening 1/4″ at a 45 degree angle. Fold the edges toward the backing and stitch down or use a glue stick or fusible web to hold it in place.

Sew a tissue box cover for any size box! @ Craft Buds

Fold 1/2″ bias tape in a rectangle around the opening with the 2 raw edges ending at a corner, or use 4 separate pieces of bias tape with 1 on each side of the rectangle (what I did below). With either method, place 1/4″ of the biast tape under the tissue box opening and leave 1/4″ sticking out from the top. Sew around the top opening 1/8″ away from the edge of your main box piece, the navy herringbone in my example (click any of the photos for a larger view).

Sew a tissue box cover for any size box! @ Craft Buds

Bring the corners right sides together and sew with a 1/4″ seam allowance. Finger press the seams open.

Sew a tissue box cover for any size box! @ Craft Buds

Sew bias tape around the bottom. Make sure the corners stay open as you sew the bias tape around.

Sew a tissue box cover for any size box! @ Craft Buds

Finished! Now that you’ve got the hang of it, you can make one for every tissue box!

Sew a tissue box cover for any size box! @ Craft Buds

 

If you’d like the printable version of this tutorial, it can be downloaded for free from Craftsy with a free Craftsy account here (affiliate link).

 

 

DIY Bath Bombs with Handmade Beauty Box

bath-bombs-finished

Hello readers! Today we take a break from sewing and crafting to share a little project to pamper yourself or someone special with a recipe (see end of post) for fizzy bath bombs. But first, let me introduce Handmade Beauty Box. They recently contacted us to see if we’d be interested in trying out one of their DIY beauty projects. I’d never heard of them before but after finding out the concept I thought our readers may be interested in knowing more about them. The way it works is that for $29.99 a month (shipping included) they’ll send you a box full of ingredients for a different theme. The price may feel a little high but I appreciate that they do all the work for you. I’ve always wanted to try making my own beauty products but have never done the research in finding recipes and ingredients. You can find out more at their site here. I chose to try the lavender and herb bath bombs since it looked like a project I’d have fun doing with my 5 year old. You can see some of the past boxes here with things like lipstick and loofah soaps. This month’s nail polish box looks like a lot of fun! You can also purchase the boxes separately.

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The box that arrives in the mail looks pretty even from the outside!

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We opened up the box to find all the ingredients neatly packaged and labeled. Everything was nice and secure in the box so no spilled or broken ingredients. The box had instructions and everything I needed to make 5 bath bombs including all of the ingredients and reusable molds and metal spray bottle for the witch hazel. I do wish that it also came with a printed recipe in with the box, but it’s available on the Beauty Box website so I can make more bath bombs with my own ingredients in the future.

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We got started right away and mixed up the ingredients. My son had a lot of fun helping me with this project and we both enjoyed seeing how they were made.

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They came together pretty quickly and we had fun making them. We started out with two bowls, one each of blue and white so we could make the striped bath bomb version shown above. But, my son wanted to mix it all together so ours are mostly light blue. Other than that, we followed all the instructions and they came out great!

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 Recipe

Want to make your own? Here’s the list of ingredients from Handmade Beauty Box:

  • 1 lb Baking Soda
  • 1/2 lb Citric Acid (It can usually be found in grocery stores in the canning section, or it’s available in larger amounts on amazon.com.)
  • 1 gram blue mica (This is used to provide the blue color and is lip/body safe. It can be found on amazon.com or other online stores and there are other colors of mica available.)
  • Witch Hazel in spray bottle (The amount you’ll need varies, but you’ll probably need just a few sprays.)
  • Fragrance or essential oil (You’ll probably need just a few drops, depending on how strong you want the fragrance)

You can find the full step by step instructions and photos at Handmade Beauty Box here. You’ll also need something to mold the bath bombs into. If you don’t have an official bath bomb mold, you could also use a silicone ice cube tray.

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Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post, but all opinions are my own. The photo above and the first photo were provided by Handmade Beauty Box.

Toddler Tote Bag + Sleepy-Time Friend

Welcome to visitors from the Busy Girl Sews blog tour!

In celebration of Heidi Staples’s new book, Sew Organized for the Busy Girl: Tips to Make the Most of Your Time & Space (Stash Books), I’ve decided to sew a project from it, and tell you a little bit about my experience.

Sleepy-Time Friend

If you often feel overwhelmed by the list of sewing projects you want to make, Heidi’s book is filled with tips for organizing your sewing space as well as using your time more efficiently. She also shares 23 (count em’!) projects, making this book a great value for the money. As a mom of 4, Heidi (who blogs at Fabric Mutt) shares her own sewing story and invites many bloggers to share their tips for an organized sewing life. I share a few tips in the book as well!

Toddler Boy Tote Bag in Ready Set Go fabric

This is my son’s new little man bag! The fabric I chose is Ann Kelle’s Ready, Set, Go 2 and a coordinating print from her Remix line. Heidi’s tote bag pattern from the book is very easy to follow (even for beginners), and I was able to make the bag with everything I already had in my stash! I especially love the outer pocket and the pop of contrasting fabric prints.

Sleepy-Time Friend Kit from "Sew Organized for the Busy Girl" by Heidi Staples

Photo: C&T Publishing

But that’s not all! I had to sew the adorable “Sleepy Time Friend Kit” project from the book, which includes a little doll (bunny or cat) in pajamas, a pillow, and a mini quilt. Here’s a picture of Heidi’s version (above).

Sleepy Time Friend Kit

Oh my goodness! I had so much fun sewing this stuff. I finished the whole project, bag, quilt, friend, and pillow, in about 3 hours. Since my son takes 2 naps a day, I was able to whip up the tote bag during his morning nap, and the other goodies that afternoon.

Cat Baby Toy and Mini Quilt

The Sleepy Time Friend comes with a little pajama pocket to store its own “sleepy time friend.” Naturally, I used Ann Kelle’s new Urban Zoologie Minis to sew the tiniest blue monkey for the cat’s little pocket. Since Elliot always sleeps with his blue monkey, it only seemed appropriate.

I’ve never sewn a mug rug, so this is indeed my smallest quilt ever at 8″ square! I used more of the Urban Zoologie Minis monkey print, some Remix, and more Ready, Set, Go 2.

Toddler Boy Bag in Ready Set Go fabric

It would absolutely make my day if Elliot decides to carry around his blue monkey in his own little tote! He held onto his little cat for quite a while before bedtime, though I’ve had to hide the little blue monkey so he doesn’t eat it. :)

You can pick up Sew Organized for the Busy Girl now on Amazon!

 

Busy Girl Sews Tour

Follow the blog tour!

March 30 – Lynne of Lily’s Quilts (Tour Kickoff & Book Giveaway!)

April 6 – Jodi of Tales of Cloth & Angela of Cut to Pieces

April 13 – Lindsay of Craft Buds & Debbie of A Quilter’s Table

April 20 – Leanne of She Can Quilt

April 27Fat Quarter Shop

May 4 – Erin of Why Not Sew?

May 11 – Jennifer of Ellison Lane Quilts

May 18 – Svetlana of SOTAK Handmade

May 25 – Lucy of Charm About You

June 1 – Maureen of Maureen Cracknell Handmade

June 8 – Becca of Bryan House Quilts

June 15 – Beth of Plum & June

June 22 – Jessica of Quilty Habit

June 29 – Caroline of Sew Can She

July 6 – Heidi of Fabric Mutt (Tour Wrap!)

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