Monday, July 11, 2011

Being Crafty - Making a Slipcover for my IKEA Chair

About four years ago, Tim and I bought dining room chairs from IKEA.  They are fairly simple, and what I loved most about them is that they have a slipcover.  I generally hate slipcovers, they never fit right and look more like a sheet thrown over a piece of furniture.  Not so with IKEA slipcovers!  Since they are specifically made for the type of chair (or couch, etc.) they fit perfectly and are super snug!  The other great thing is that when we bought them I figured that in a few years we could just buy new covers and essentially get new (looking) chairs for not much money.

So fast forward four years to a couple of weeks ago and Tim and I are at IKEA hoping to get new slipcovers for our chairs (in addition to a few other things).  We are looking at the slipcovers (which range from $10-$40 per cover) and are not super impressed with the style selection.  We are trying to get our condo ready for selling in a few months, so I wanted something that would complement the new paint color we are thinking of getting, and have a bit of a pattern to disguise the messes that children inevitably make.  We finally settled on one.  We didn't really like it, but it was the best they had to offer, I didn't want to come home empty handed, and really I didn't know of any other option besides picking from what they had to offer.

We get home and the next day I try one cover on a chair.  I couldn't believe it, but it was way too big!  It fit nothing like the covers we currently have on our chairs.  So I searched on the internet and, much to my frustration, IKEA had changed the size of our particular chair sometime between when we originally bought them and now.  What were we going to do?  We chose these chairs because of being able to change out the slipcovers instead of getting new chairs.  As I continued looking online, I noticed that some people sell custom made covers for our chair.  This was great because the fabric selection was much better, but now your talking $70 and up per cover. No way!  Then I stumbled upon this blog where a lady actually made her own beautiful slipcovers for her dining chairs (same kind as we have).  I was inspired!

Now I am not a great crafter, but I am a "get it done" kind of person, so I was confident that I could make this work!  I first created a mock cover by hand with an old table cloth I had lying around, just to see if this was actually possible. I was so pleased with the result!  The lady on the blog I found made her covers a little fancier than I wanted, so instead of following her pattern, I decided to just rip apart one of my covers to use as my pattern...check it out!


I went to the store with my mom and picked out this fabric.



I ripped apart all the pieces of the old slipcover and marked which pieces would need to be sewn back together.



I pinned my pieces onto my new fabric and cut around them, leaving a little extra room knowing that my seams wouldn't be as narrow as the original ones.


I didn't take any picture of the actual sewing part.  I do not have my own sewing machine, so my mother-in-law was so gracious to let me use her machine.  She even got our her second machine and helped me so we would get done quicker!



The finished product.  I love it!  It's by no means perfect, as I am not a seasoned seamstress, but it's plenty good enough for me!  Now I just have seven more to make =)



Close-up of the seat.


Happy Crafting!

15 comments:

  1. O my gosh! I totally need to make these covers for our chairs. We received our dining room set from Leonard's Godparents and they are looking pretty shabby. I even thought the other day that i should buy some chair covers! By the way, I love the pattern on your fabric!

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  2. What are your chairs like, Danielle? You're craftier than I am, so I'm sure you could make it work! I didn't buy fancy fabric, but it is only costing me $8 per chair, which is great compared to buying new ones at probably about $40 and up!

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  3. They look wonderful! I accidentally threw out my old worn slipcovers so I don't have them to make a pattern. I would love to buy this pattern from you! Would you consider it? please please please :)

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  4. Susan, of course =) Do you want actual sheets to lay down as patterns or do you just want the dimensions of the pieces?

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  5. I'm so excited! I would be thrilled to pay you for either, so whatever would be easier for you!

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  6. Susan, are you in a huge hurry? I think I want to get some pattern tracing paper and just trace it out for you. It might take a couple of days, is that ok?

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  7. No hurry at all - it will be a nice break from trying (unsuccessfully!) to make my own pattern.. thanks!

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  8. Susan, if you are still interested, I have the pattern traced out and ready for you. I was thinking $10 would be a fair price (a couple dollars for the pattern paper and shipping costs, and a couple dollars for my time). Let me know if that is ok. I figure paypal is the easiest way to do this if that is good with you. Just send the payment to (a dot maze at att dot net) and I will ship it to the address linked to your account. (I'm just assuming that you have paypal, if you don't we can work something else out.)

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  9. That is wonderful! I'll do it today - thanks again. I am so excited.

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  10. Hi Amy! This is too funny - I hadn't received the patterns yet and thought you must have gotten pretty busy and I totally understand that with a family. So I thought I would wait a few weeks before contacting you. Little did I know that my husband hadn't updated our address on Paypal and today I found your patterns delivered to our front door by the new people in our old house along with a wedding invite from May 7th! :) Thanks so much! (You are probably wondering why I didn't email you about receiving the package.) I may have questions, so thanks for the sweet note!

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  11. Oh no! I'm sorry you weren't able to start on your covers sooner, but I'm glad you got the pattern eventually =) Have fun! I hope your chairs turn out great.

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  12. How much fabric did you buy for each chair? Thanks in advance!

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  13. The way that I laid it out (disassembling the original cover piece by piece) it took 4 feet of fabric for one cover.

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