How to sew a bean bag chair

Updated February 21, 2017

Bean bag chairs are comfortable to flop in to watch TV, read a book or sit around the fireplace on a cold winter's evening. While you can buy a perfectly good bean bag chair fairly inexpensively, there is nothing like making your own if you like to sew and want to have one custom tailored for your family room.

Start by buying a pattern at your local fabric store or online.

Select the recommended fabric or one that you like. Buy the amount of material required for both the outside of the bean bag chair and the lining. You will also have to buy zippers, one for the chair, and the other for the lining.

Locate a source of styrofoam beads if the store doesn't have them. Office supply stores may carry a supply of styrofoam beads for shipping or hobby stores for crafting.

Follow the pattern closely as you study the guide sheet and start to cut out the fabric. Browse through all the instructions that the pattern gives to make a bean bag chair before you start assembling, so the steps make sense before you begin sewing.

Commence sewing once everything has been cut out. Follow the sewing guide sheet carefully. Bean bag chairs can take a lot of fabric, and by following the adage "measure twice, cut once," you won't waste any of the fabric or have to spend more money to replace what was improperly cut.


Make sure you make the lining portion, so you can launder the outside of the bean bag chair from time to time. The lining is not a step to skip. You might also want to preshrink the lining if it is 100 per cent cotton. If the outside of the bean bag chair is also a cotton, wash and dry that first. Unless it's the dead of winter, take the finished lining for the bean bag chair outside when you want to stuff the beads to avoid a total mess in your home. These little styrofoam beads get all over and can be time consuming to sweep or vacuum.


Inexperienced sewers will find sewing a bean bag chair a daunting task.

Things You'll Need

  • Moderately heavy woven fabric
  • Muslin or lightweight cotton fabric
  • Measuring tape
  • 2 18-inch zippers
  • Thread
  • Pattern
  • Pins
  • Scissors
  • Sewing machine
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About the Author

Jackie Johnson is a published writer and professional blogger, and has a degree in English from Arizona State University. Her background in real estate analysis prepared her for objective thinking, researching and writing.