How To Make a Pattern from a Thrifted Ugly Slipcovered Chair


Let's say you find a hideously slipcovered chair at a flea market. You like the lines, hate the fabric. When you peek underneath, you only find more hideous fabric worn threadbare. Is it worth buying? It depends. If you don't mind buying new fabric, absolutely!


OK, it's not the same chair but you get the picture.

Slipcovers made twenty or thirty years ago were made to fit! Here's how you can turn an old ugly slipcover into the pattern for a fresh one.

  • Get a marker and label each piece (OB-outside back, LOA-left outside arm, and so on)
  • Take a photograph of the entire chair
  • Remove the slipcover
  • Use a seam ripper to take the slipcover apart
  • Press all pieces flat
  • Layout pieces on your new fabric, cut out
  • Stitch together just like the old one
  • Clip curved seams
  • Optional: Use velcro or ties instead of a zipper
  • Optional: Change the skirt from a pleated to boxed or vice versa. Or, completely leave the skirt off and sew a piece of cording around the bottom

And remember: You should only wash a slipcover if you've washed and dried the fabric prior to making your slipcover.

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