DIY: Sofa Cushion Replacement

Updated April 12, 2018

You don't have to throw the sofa away if the cushions need replacing. Even the novice sewer can redo cushions. From the inner filler to the fabric cover, the replacement project is relatively simple. Whether the fabric cushions are worn, damaged, dirty or just old, replace them with homemade ones, and save some cash. Everything you need to complete the project is at your local craft or sewing store. Before long, you'll kick your feet up on your refurbished cushions.

Remove the original cushions you want to replace. Remove fabric covering the cushions so you get a correct measurement.

Measure the cushion’s length, width and thickness. Keep track of these numbers so you can determine how much fabric and what size of foam rubber filler you need.

Purchase new foam rubber for the cushion inserts and fabric for the covering, according to the size of your measurements.

Lay the foam rubber on a flat surface to measure and cut it. Mark your length and width measurements on the foam. This will help you cut a straight and even line when cutting the cushions to size.

Slice through the foam rubber using a sharp utility knife or other sharp cutting instrument. Cut slowly, keeping the cut as clean as possible. Continue cutting the foam until all your cushions are complete and ready for covering.

Calculate how much fabric you need by taking your cushion’s length, width and thickness measurements and adding 2 inches to them, to allow for seams, and then add the final thickness measurement to both your length and width measurements. For example, if your cushion is 20 inches wide and long and 4 inches thick, add 2 inches to those measurements, ending up with 22 inches wide and long by 6 inches thick, and then add the thickness measurement to the width and length measurements ending with two fabric panels 28 by 28 inches.

Double your fabric and lay it out on a flat surface such as a table. Mark you fabric with your length and width measurements and pin the fabric together. Cut your fabric panels out and remove the pins.

Turn the fabric panels, right sides together and pin three sides together. Sew a 1-inch seam around the three sides, unpin and cut any loose threads.

Turn the cushion covering so the right sides are facing out. Place the foam rubber cushion insert inside the fabric covering.

Fold the open seam toward the inside and pin the two edges together. Sew an approximate ¼- to ½-inch seam on the outside, closing the remaining seam. Cut off any loose threads and put the cushions on the sofa.


Craft or sewing stores usually carry foam rubber in a variety of thicknesses. Use a durable fabric such as upholstery to last longer. Attach Velcro to the open seams as an alternative to holding them together. Finish the seam openings by turning them under and sewing a 1/2-inch seam. Attach the Velcro to a seam's underside and stick the seams together. You can then remove the fabric cover for washing.

Things You'll Need

  • Original cushion
  • Measuring tape
  • Foam rubber
  • Chalk
  • Utility knife
  • Fabric
  • Pins
  • Scissors
  • Thread
  • Sewing machine
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About the Author

For over 25 years, Joyce Starr has owned businesses dealing with landscape & design, lawn maintenance, specialty herbs and a garden center. She holds certificates in landscape design and xeriscaping. Starr shares her passion for nature in her writing, publishing articles on horticulture, outdoor recreation, travel as well as business.