How to make cheap couch covers

Written by benna crawford
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How to make cheap couch covers
Cover an ugly sofa with attractive fabric to pick up a room. (Jupiterimages/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images)

If you're saving for your dream couch but the sofa in your space is too shabby to be chic, make a simple cover. You don't need to create a fancy, custom-fitted, impossible-to-wash slipcover. A length of fabric, a couple of dowels, a few passes with scissors, a hem and you're done. The new couch cover will pop right into the washing machine and dryer when it needs freshening up. And it's so easy to make, you can have two or three of them for different seasons of the year.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Fabric
  • Tape measure
  • 5/8--inch wood dowels
  • Paper and pencil
  • Needle and thread (optional)
  • Sewing machine (optional
  • Scissors

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  1. 1

    Sort through your stash of fabrics. The perfect couch cover may be hidden in an old pair of drapes, a lightweight bedspread; yards of cotton canvas for a project that didn't happen; or interesting textiles that can be pieced together to make a length big enough for the sofa.

  2. 2

    Measure the couch to determine the size of the fabric to be draped. Run the tape measure from the floor in front of the couch, over the cushions and back, down to the floor behind the couch. Add 12 inches for a tuck-in allowance and two extra hem widths. Then measure from the floor on one side of the couch, up over the arm, across the seat, over the opposite arm and to the floor. Add 24 inches for tuck-in allowance and two hem widths. These are the dimensions of the fabric you will use.

  3. 3

    Assemble fabric you have, sewing together enough smaller pieces for the cover. Or purchase enough fabric to make the cover. Purchase or repurpose three lengths of 5/8-inch wood dowel. One piece run from inside-arm to the opposite inside- arm across the back of the seat. The other two pieces anchor the fabric at the arms.

  4. 4

    Drape the fabric over the couch, tucking it in between the cushions and the arms and back. Trim the fabric where it pools on the floor at the arms, front and back. Remove the fabric from the sofa and hem it all the way around.

  5. 5

    Return the fabric to the couch. Adjust so it is even and tuck it in again, using the dowels to secure it at the sides and back between the cushions and the frame. Set a few decorative cushions on it and you have a practically new couch you can redesign at will.

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