Estimating Fabric for Custom Slipcovers

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How to estimate fabric for slipcovers
Estimating part 2 for slipcovers
How to estimate fabric for slipcovers

How to estimate fabric for slipcovers

Sew What! Custom Home Décor & Slipcovers

Estimating Fabric for Slipcovers
Making a slipcover for a piece of furniture takes more yardage than upholstery. If you should use an upholstery chart for estimating yardage, you will most likely be short of yardage. Realize that a slipcover is supposed to slip over the piece of furniture, hanging snuggly, but the fabric is not stretched or pulled tautly as in upholstery. It is how the slipcover is cut, and sewn together working with the grain of the fabric, and gravity that will give the custom slipcover an upholstered look.
Use a cloth measuring tape for actual measurements of the piece of furniture to be slip covered. A cloth tape will give a more exact measurement in determining yardage needed to make a custom slipcover. Add 2 inches to each measurement for matching fabrics and seam allowances. Add 3” for each tuck in area.

1. Outside Back - Measure top to floor _______side to side__________
2. Inside Back - top to deck _______(add for tuck in) side to side______
3. Back to front_______ side to side widest part_______ (add for tuck in) deck to floor_______
4. Arms back to front_____(length of arm) deck up to top______(add for tuck in) top to floor_____
5. Back cushion - side to slide_____ top to bottom______ cushion thickness(boxing)_______
6. Seat cushion - side to side______(largest part)back to front______ cushion thickness_______

7. Type of skirt will determine amount of yardage needed. Self-lined skirts are best, for this chair. Allow another   length for the skirt on all 4 sides to self line.
8. Self welt cord: allow ½ yard of fabric for the cording, which will make 18 yards of 5/32 welt cord.
9. Add all the measurements together, including extra for the pattern repeats, matching and welt cord. Average chair as in photo usually takes 8-10 yards of fabric with no pattern matching.

I have been teaching custom slipcovers for years and there is always something new to learn. To See my work go to, Last spring I finished 140 custom slipcovers for a wedding in California.


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posted in: sewing, slipcovers, estimating fabric, slipcover classes

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