How to make a loose sofa cover
You will need:
- Contrasting overlay fabric
- Matching thread
- Soft measuring tape
- 3 1in (25mm) wooden dowels, cut to length
Making a stylish cover to hide an old sofa, or just update a room's look, couldn't be easier. This loose sofa wrap is made up of two pieces - a full cover with a cross-shaped overlayer on top. It's easy to change, embellish and take off for washing. Choose contrasting fabrics for a dramatic effect and experiment with the corner treatments.
Time to complete the job: 3 hours.
Approximate budget: £30, depending on the fabric.
Tip: For an even simpler cover, make only the main cover or the overlayer and drape over your sofa.
Step 1: Measuring & cutting out
With your measuring tape, take the four basic measurements of your sofa. Measure from the front to the back of the sofa for the body length, and measure from arm to arm across the sofa seat for the body width.
Measure from where the arm meets the seat and over the arm to the floor for the arm length. Measure from where the arm meets the front of the sofa seat to where the arm meets the sofa back for the arm width.
Main cover: The length of the main cover will be the sofa length plus 14in (36cm) for seam and tuck-in allowances. The width will be the body width plus twice the arm width, plus 14in (36cm) for seam and tuck-in allowances. Cut out of the main fabric.
Overlayer: Cut out three pieces from the contrasting fabric: one piece measuring the body width and body length, adding 1.25in (32mm) all round for seam allowances, and adding 12in (30cm) onto the body length for the tuck-in allowances; and two pieces to the arm width and arm length, adding 1.25in (32mm) all round for seam allowances and adding 12in (30cm) onto the arm length for the tuck-in allowance.
Step 2: Sewing the main cover
Place the unfinished fabric on the sofa and place one corner level with the floor.
Drape the sofa to the desired shape - leaving any extra fabric to pool in the seat of the sofa - and trim the remaining corners flush with the floor.
Take the cover off the sofa. Turn under a 5/8in (16mm) hem all around and stitch. Press.
Drape the finished cover over the sofa so the front, back and side hems touch the floor. Tuck the extra fabric in the seat of the sofa behind the cushions.
Step 3: Sewing the overlayer
With right sides together, pin the shorter edge of each arm piece to the body section of the overlayer (place the cover on the sofa to determine where to attach). Stitch a 5/8in (16mm) seam. Press the seams open. Turn under 5/8in (16mm) on the remaining unfinished sides, press and stitch in place.
Centre the overlayer on the main sofa cover with the side pieces aligned with the sofa arms. Tuck the pieces in behind the cushions until the hems are flush with the floor.
Step 4: Holding the cover in place
Cut three pieces of 1in (25mm) wooden doweling to the length and width of the sofa. Insert over the covers and between the cushions to hold the cover in place.
Step 5: Arm decoration
Experiment with the arm sections to make your cover more dramatic. Add a fringe to the overlay, knot the arms with tasselled cords, or simply tie the fabric into a large knot. The same cover can lend itself to a number of different looks - get creative!