Miss Mustard Seed's Slipcover Tutorial Review

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

I finished up the family room make-over (mostly) and jumped right into a job painting a dresser, desk, and bookshelf set for a client. The finish on the furniture was giving me a little grief, but I finally sucked it up, got out my palm sander, and sanded everything down to a beautiful smooth blank slate. I primed everything today and am excited to put the first coat of paint on tomorrow. I can't wait to show you!

But before that, I wanted to give a run down on my slipcovers. I primarily used Miss Mustard Seed's six part (yes SIX parts-God bless her) video series to get my bearings.
We inherited Big Brown from my parents about five years ago, and while the way it fit in our family room worked great, it has always been, well, big and brown. So very, very brown.
So I've been reading tutorials about making your own slipcovers for years, but most of them didn't quite make sense or just didn't look like something I could do. My sewing skills are limited to straight lines don't you know.

Here is a link to my Pinterest board with different slipcovering advice. Anyhow, when I decided to makeover the family room I finally got serious about making slipcovers. It was that tipping point where I figured even poorly made slipcovers were going to look better than what I had. 

I read a bunch about white slipcovers and using drop cloths as fabric but my mom talked me off that ledge by pointing out that we are a family of cave people. So I went with grey. 

I looked at our local fabric stores and couldn't find what I wanted at a price I liked too so I ended up ordering from Online Fabric Store. This is the second time I've used them and they are cheaper than retail and ship quickly. Winning.

I used this chart to figure out how much fabric to order-and then added 5 more yards for fabric insurance.

After that I studied Miss Mustard Seed's videos in earnest. She teaches to drape your fabric over the frame of your piece, cut the pieces while it is draped in place, pin the pieces together while they are on your sofa, and then sew the pieces together one at a time.
I love piping, and she has a video for that too! So I made a gazillion yards of piping and now I am a fierce piping expert. True story.
Here are some more "in process" photos.
As you pin and sew you are working with the slipcover inside out. After you sew each new piece you can flip your work right side up and lay it over the sofa to see how it's fitting. 

It's a little tedious, but it also lets you see any mistakes or adjustments you want to make before you get too far along.

The main piece of advice I would give you is to keep going even when things aren't lining up exactly perfect. See the corner of this slip? I couldn't make it lay flat for the life of me, but it looks fine with all the cushions on.
And speaking of cushions, nearly all of mine have little puckers and tucks in them. I just gritted my teeth and kept sewing. There is a noticeable improvement from my first cushion to my last, but I wasn't about to go back and resew any dang cushions. I had twelve of them for Pete's sake!

Do you see the chips?! That is why I couldn't have white!

In the end I am just so happy with how these came out; I am sending a big internet-y hug to Miss Mustard Seed for making such an awesome tutorial! Now you do it :-)

6 Responses to “Miss Mustard Seed's Slipcover Tutorial Review”

  1. Shelley! Thank you so much for posting this. I've watched MMS's tutorial on slipcovers about 20 times trying to get the courage to try it for my dining room ladder-back chairs. What kind of fabric did you use?

    1. You can totally do it! I used cotton duck and it was nice to work with. One thing I forgot to put in the post, in her tutorial she makes the pleated skirt and I copied her because I like it and also I was scared to do anything different from what she said...anyway, it takes extra fabric so when you do you fabric calculations get extra if you want the skirt like hers. Best of luck!

  2. Shelley,
    You did an amazing job! It looks like a professional seamstress stepped in!
    Smiles, alice

    1. Hi Alice! Thank you so much! I did get a bid from a professional and it was $1500. Yikes! There are little imperfections but I am loving the color change so much I don't mind.

  3. Very impressive! They look great! Also, a few days ago the curly haired two year old at our house out of nowhere asked for you (very specifically!) to come play with her. So we'll have to make that happen soon :)

    1. I've been thinking about her too! Love our playdates :-)


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