Butterfly Cushions


Avoiding the trousers challenge? Moi? Certainly not πŸ˜‰

I usually love a good day out at the January sales, but something’s clearly shifted in both my mind and my shopping habits this year. Maybe it’s an adverse reaction to all that Black Friday mayhem, particularly bad apparently up here in the NW of England. Or maybe it’s all this sewing. Not sure, but the only sales shopping I’ve indulged in so far (I’m not promising complete restraint with all those ‘now 70% off’ emails currently arriving in my inbox…), was new bedding for my children’s rooms fromΒ Laura Ashley. I was happy enough to purchase the half price duvet covers, throws, and even a bit of wallpaper for when we finally get round to decorating in the Spring. But I drew the line at matching cushions for daft prices, pretty though they were…

Instead I had a good rummage around in the remnant box and found this…


…the matching upholstery fabric for the butterfly range I’d selected for my daughter’s room, at half price. I knew I had a couple of cheap cushions at home (Wilkinsons I think) awaiting some prettifying, so I thought it was worth a try.

I’ve only ever sewn cushion covers once before, back on my very first (and only, so far) sewing course: nope, can’t remember a word of it! I had a couple of patterns, that Β came free with various magazines, but they were all a bit ‘fussy’. I wanted something simple to show off the pattern. So I just made it up by measuring the cushions, adding an inch and a half seam allowance all round, adding a ‘centred zip’ (and pretty neatly too, even if I do say so myself) and finally using some wide (hate the really small, fiddly suff) bias binding as ‘piping’ (not so neat!). The sides came out fine, but I didn’t really know how to do the corners: short strips for each side (which I went with) or one long continuous strip all the way round? I’ve ended up with a kind of twisted effect at each corner, which is ok, but if I make some up for our living room, as I’d like to, I need to work this out better for next time. Children’s rooms seem the perfect place to ‘practice’ though for now… And because the fabric’s so lovely, a real pleasure to sew with, I don’t think you can really tell.

Here they are it situ with matching duvet cover and fleecy throw…


My daughter’s delighted with her new ‘reading’ corner of the bunk bed. She’s always so thrilled with everything I make her, it’s hard to resist πŸ™‚

Anyway, about those trousers


19 thoughts on “Butterfly Cushions

  1. This was a great idea! You’re very clever trying out the piping/bias binding – I would have just sewn right sides together! And a zip, too – very good πŸ™‚ visitors will think you just bought them in Laura Ashley along with everything else! πŸ™‚

  2. What a great find! Remnant boxes are always worth a rummage through – most of the fabrics are hopeless, but occasionally you find some buried treasure! The cushions look great and add a really cosy feel. πŸ™‚

  3. I can’t resist a rummage through the remnants box in Laura Ashley; I’ve had many a bargain over the years. Well done with your cushions – covering your own piping cord is a great skill to learn if you can as it makes cushions look really professional……:)

    • I’ve never looked before, so really glad I did. Would be great to improve my home-sewing skills to update our home, definitely a target for the coming year. Didn’t think of using piping cord: I just used bias binding. Will try your method next time, thanks πŸ™‚

  4. These have turned out perfectly, well done πŸ™‚ So far I have avoided inserting a zip into a cushion cover (I just sew them closed, simple!) but have brought two home from school with a view to giving them a new lease of life from my stash. It’s a bonus it saved you some cash, and also surely counts as a selfless make to start the year. Something for you next, perhaps?!

    • Thank you! It was (apart from those corners…) mighty simple actually after all those clothes. I sewed up the zip end first, tacking the zip in place before sewing up, then did the other three sides. Will look forward to seeing your revamped ones πŸ™‚

  5. Pingback: So, trousers… | navybluethreads

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