How to Make Cushions for Midcentury Modern Sofas

January 17, 2017

 

This past summer, I made a set of cushions for some authentic midcentury modern Danish sofa frames.  The cushions were a beautiful way to update these wonderful pieces of furniture, and now I'm ready to attempt a new set!  After all, the cushions that I made last summer were my first, and a second set will likely improve.

 

As you can see in the photo, I originally made 4 cushions for each couch.  This time, I will make 2 full-size cushions for each couch.  I think this will increase efficiency in the creation process in addition to making the sofas more comfortable.

 

All in all, making a set of cushions for 2 matching sofas costs a little under $250.  Purchasing 1 new cushion (1 of four needed for a couch) is about the same price.  Making your own cushions is rewarding and can save you a lot of money!

 

Below, you will find a PDF of instructions for the method I used to create these cushions.  You will likely need to adjust the measurements for your own needs, but I hope this will be helpful regardless.  I also hope to add video instruction once I complete the new cushions.

 

How to Make Couch Cushions for Midcentury Modern Danish Couches

 

Dimensions of the bottom cushions: 

 

Parameter of top and bottom panels: 140 (x2 = 280)

 

Dimensions of the top cushions: 

 

Parameter of top and bottom panels: 124 (x2 = 248)

 

Material Needs (purchased on fabric.com):

  1. Fabric (canvas duck fabric recommended) 

    • 5 yards of 54” top and bottom panel fabric (Fuchsia)

    • 2 yards of 54” side panel fabric (Orange)

    • 2 1/2 yards piping fabric (White)

  2. 30 yards size 3 (3/8”) cotton piping rope

  3. 4 48” zippers

  4. 3” Upholstery Foam Cushion (purchased on Amazon.com) 

 

Cuts of fabric

  1. Tips

    • Use a ruler and a rotary cutter

    • Cut width of rectangular panels on the fold for efficiency 

      • Lengths on fold will usually be 23.5” (from 47”)

  2. Top and Bottom Panels

    • 4 panels: 47” x 25”

    • 4 panels: 47”’ x 17”

  3. Side panels

    • 4 panels: 47” x 4”

    • 8 panels: 47” x 3”

    • 4 panels: 25” x 4”

      • on fold: 12.5” x 4”

    • 4 panels: 17” x 4”

      • on fold: 8.5” x 4”

  4. Piping fabric

    • Tips:

      • Draw strips and cut with scissors 

    • 4 panels: 95” x 2”

      • on fold: 47.5” x 2”

    • 4 panels: 79” x 2”

      • on fold: 39.5” x 2”

    • 8 panels: 47” x 2”

    • 4 ropes: 140”

    • 4 ropes: 124”

  5. Foam

    • 2 panels: 46” x 24” x 3”

    • 2 panels: 46” x 16” x 3”

Putting it together (1/2” seam allowance, use zipper foot)

  1. Piping

    • Sew together each 95 x 2 and 47 x 2 piece of piping fabric

    • Sew together each 79 x 2 and 47 x 2 piece of piping fabric

    • Sew in appropriate rope to piping fabric

      • 95 x 2 and 47 x 2 with 140 rope

      • 79 x 2 and 47 x 2 with 124 rope

  2. Zippers

    • Align zipper handle 1/2” from the end of the fabric

    • Attach zippers to 47 x 3 side panels

    • Excess fabric will be tucked into the cover

  3. Top and bottom panels to piping

    • Attach piping to top and bottom panels 

  4. Side panels

    • Attach side panels to appropriate top and bottom panels (leaving the corners open)

    • Sew corners together

      • Optional: change to standard foot

  5. Foam

    • Cut foam to size with an electric meet carving knife

    • Insert foam into cushion covers

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

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