30-minute Cushion Covers

On our front terrace we’ve got a couple hanging basket chairs that are our go-to for morning coffee and for watching sunsets. They were made here locally in Costa Rica. After several months in the afternoon sun, the once-charcoal gray cushions were faded to a gray-brown and were looking rather sad.

I wanted to change the color anyway, and I had plenty of microfiber fabric that matches the color scheme of our house. Wanting to be sure it would hold up to the strong tropical sun, I first cut a swatch and left it out in the sun and rain for three weeks. To my surprise and joy, it didn’t fade at all, so I knew I could proceed. Out with the old and in with the new!

Using the same concept as my instructions for no-zipper throw pillow covers, I tackled the cushions. Instead of using a single piece of fabric, though, I cut three pieces this time. I decided to do it this way because of the rounded corners of the cushions. I laid the cushion on top of the fabric and traced around it, allowing enough extra fabric (about 1/2 inch) for seam allowance. I cut two pieces – these would be the tops of the two cushions. Then, for the backs, I wanted to use the same “pillow case” concept so I could easily remove the covers for laundering. So I cut two pieces for each cushion back, one for the top half and another for the bottom, and I cut them long enough so they’d overlap in the middle by about 9 inches.

Then I finished the edges of the pieces that would be the opening of the case in back using my overlock machine (love this workhorse of a machine and can’t believe I went so many years without one). That done, I lined up the 3 pieces right sides together, and sewed just a single seam the entire circumference of the cushion. I turned it right side out and slipped in the old cushion, and voila! it was done.

I had both cushions finished within a hour. Seriously. Amazing.

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