Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Slipcovering a wingback

My main wingwoman and I recently slipcovered my wingback settee.  God love her for her skills and willingness to try new things. 

I found a settee on Craigslist that I wanted to use as a dining bench.  It turned out to be too low for my dining table but since we got such a great deal on it, we decided to tinker with it and try to raise the seat.  We purchased some additional foam at the fabric store... have you priced foam lately? My mouth dropped open when we saw that a 2" thick foam mat was $55.  That was more than the settee!

We had to cut the foam piece to the correct length of the settee seat and used a serrated knife.  It wasn't the best idea, since it left rough edges, and we later heard that an electric carving knife works great!

Despite Mom's awesome talents, I was unsure how good the slipcover would look, so we decided to go the super affordable route and purchased painter's drop cloths (similar to a project we posted a while back).  Before we got started with the fitting, we washed and bleached them so they look kinda like linen.   

We then laid the dropcloth over the back of the settee with the fabric inside out and rearranged it until we got it to cover everywhere we needed it to.  Once the back and sides were covered, we smoothed it out with our hands.  Then we started pinning (the quote of the day was definitely "I am only good at pinning on Pinterest!") and trimmed off the excess as we went.

Then Mom stitched sections at a time, reversing the fabric to the correct side, trying it on the settee, turning it inside out again, and proceeding. This was very trial and error, and not an exact science over at the Powell workroom.  I'm a bit more of the antsy, type A. who is way too perfectionisty, so this was hard for me to watch!  Lucky for me, this is just the kind of stuff Mom excels at.

There was alot of excess fabric that had to be trimmed away as we went.

Tucking, smoothing, pinning, trimming, sewing....

And we always have extra help...

Mom finished the bottom with seam tape (by ironing the seam over and handstitching the hem).


It's not perfect but it was a quick solution and a fine fix until I redecorate that space again (which I'm already onto with my recent purchase of two new chairs).

We're always up to just trying something new and jumping in head first. And because dropcloths are so economical, I was only out about $20 so it was the perfect medium to learn on and play with.  We are constantly inspired by our readers and fellow bloggers, and since so many of you are uber talented, I'm guessing many of you have tried your hand at slipcovering, too.  What have you slipcovered lately?



  1. This looks so great. I have been dying to have two chairs plus at least one sofa slip covered. My husband thinks we should just buy new furniture for the price. I have a feeling my mom could do this as well so might just let her try on a chair or two. I'll let you know how it turns out!

  2. It looks nice. I know that I do not have the patience for this but I have a small club chair that could use a slipcover. Do you hire out? :)

  3. I am not nearly as brave as you two, I have never tied making a slipcover. Bravo to the Powell Brower girls for being so resourceful and turning out a great product. I love how it looks in your kitchen Bethany!

  4. I have been meaning to do a slipcover for so long. Nancy, get over here and help a girl out!

  5. Um, can you come over to my house and help me???

  6. Wow! You two are impressive, it looks great! I love the stylish look of a settee at your table! I slipcovered my barstools about a year ago, I'm ready for an update! :)

  7. oh wao! A labor od love indeed. Love it. It really looks Fabuloso!

  8. Super impressive! you guys rock! love your chairs too b the way! :-)

  9. I actually slipcovered a sofa many years ago ... I was clueless and it really turned out alright!! But now, today ... I just got my new slipcover in for my Sunporch that I have been working on for months!! Yours looks fabulous!! xo

  10. I a truly impressed...it looks awesome!

  11. Oh the patience of a saint, I can just barely sew pillows and drapes.. that chair is great!
    xo Karolyn

  12. I've actually never tried to do a slipcover! Honestly, I am too intimidated by it! But you guys had the right attitude and amount of patience and I think it came out very cute!

Holly Foxen Wells

    P.S. Don’t Forget to enter The Aestate Giveaway happening on GlamourMash NOW!

  13. Wow - the settee looks great!! Really like the pillows you have on it, too! Also, had to mention how adorable your little puppies are from a previous post! Oh my goodness... nothing cuter than a puppy!

  14. I think you did beautifully! I have slip covered a sofa before, it was a lot of fussing and pinning, but well worth the effort. I love your idea of using drop cloth...may have to steal that idea:)


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