Got an old trunk that needs some love? Instead of sending it to the landfill. you can sass it up with a handmade cover!
When there's something in the house that starts to look a little ragged, it's hard to resist the call of IKEA. It's so easy to hit up that Swedish wonderland and replace an aging piece on the cheap. Rather than send that beat up old trunk to the landfill, it's pretty easy and fun to make your own, handmade cover!
This project took about four yards of fabric, just over 1/2 a yard of batting, 24 oz of stuffing and three vintage buttons, which are optional. The cover in the pictures uses hand dyed hemp from the fantastic Noonday Textiles, recycled batting, and polyfill. If you want to go even greener, you can stuff the cushion with an alternative fiberfill, like this one from Mountain Mist. I've also seen fiberfill made from bamboo or corn!
The trunk I was covering measured 44" wide x 19" deep x 19" tall, but you can size this up or down to fit what you're trying to cover. You'll need to cut out:
- two 45" x 21" pieces of the hemp
- two 20" x 22" pieces of the hemp
- two 45" x 20" pieces of the hemp
- one 45" x 19" piece of batting
- two or three vintage buttons (optional)
Once everything is cut and ironed, it's time to get hemming! Grab one of your 46" x 21" panels and fold one short edge over by 1/2", pressing it well. Fold it over, press it again, and pin your first side. Repeat this on the other short side of the fabric and on one long side. Follow the same steps with the second 46" x 21" panel and both 20" by 22" pieces. Run each panel through the sewing machine to secure the edges and iron the panels to set your stitches.
To start the cushion, you'll want to hem all four sides of the 45" by 20" pieces, but instead of folding the edges twice, just fold them once. You're going to make sort of a sandwich with the batting in between the two pieces of fabric. Now it's time to pin the side panels onto the cushion! If you're working with bigger dimensions like this, you'll probably want to do this on the floor. Just layer the unfinished edge in between your batting sandwich, making sure to pin liberally.
You're ready to sew! Start about 1/3 of the way from one corner and run the cushion through your machine, leaving about 5" unsewn so you can stuff. I know 5" seems like a lot, but I promise it won't when you're trying to shove your arm in there to stuff the cushion. Once you get all your stuffing in, you can run the cushion through the machine again to finish it off.
At this point, you could be done, or you could add the optional buttons! If you're going the button route, start with the needle underneath the cushion and go up through the cushion. Attach the button, and then put the needle back through. You can make your gathering as deep or shallow as you want by pulling harder or giving the thread more slack. Do a bunch of stitches, so everything is nice and secure and finish the button by tying a knot on the underside of the cushion. Repeat for however many buttons you decided to use.
Now, put your new cushion onto your trunk, open a cold beer, and have a seat. You earned it!