Another cushion

It is quite a long time since I finished stitching the Peacock tile from Ehrman.

I had a problem – the design was rectangular and I intended to make a cushion cover with one side tapestry and the other side fabric.  I could not find a rectangular cushion of a suitable size in any of the shops in our area.  It did not occur to me that there might be other ways of using a rectangular piece of canvas work, so I put it on one side.

Having made the two cushions I blogged about here, I realised that I could use the rectangular panel in a larger cushion.  I made some rough calculations and on my next visit to city shops took a length of tapestry wool as a colour guide.  To be on the safe side I bought a metre of fabric, with the intention of lining the tapestry and making a cushion pad as well as a cover.  The finished article is slightly different.  I made a cushion pad and a cushion cover, which did not line the tapestry.  The (cotton) fabric is the same for the pad and the cover, which is plain on the reverse.

Cushion pad

Cushion pad

The pad is filled with recycled polyester.

I began constructing the cover by inserting the zip.  Originally my idea was to have the zip the width of the cushion, but I made it larger than the panel.  The pad is sufficiently squashy to fit through the zip with care.

Zip detail

Zip detail

I joined as many seams as possible using my sewing machine.  I left a gap of about 4-6 inches to fill the cushion pad (enough to put my hand through), which I oversewed after filling the pad.

Peacock tile cushion

Peacock tile cushion

The panel was stitched in place by hand after all the machine stitching was complete.  This was rather time-consuming.  It might have been better to make the panel with its border and then complete the cushion cover.  I avoided a seam on the edge opposite the zip, which made the alternative method difficult.  Avoiding stitching the front of the cover to the back was of paramount importance!


How I made two cushions

Members of the craft group somehow acquire more and more cushions – unless they make them for other people.

My foray to shops with a list provided me with most of the materials I needed to complete two cushions.  US readers, I understand that you call our cushions “pillows”.

The first one is a square cushion, measuring sixteen inches.  When I went shopping I intended it to be a fourteen inch one and bought a 14” zip  (or zipper over the Atlantic).  No problem, cushion pads squash!


Klimt taupe cushion

The tapestry panel is from Ehrman and is Klimt taupe.  The backing fabric I found is a good match.  I decided that as I had a 16” cushion pad it would be better to use that and make a border around the panel.  It would also be easier to machine stitch a zip to fabric that to try to attach it to tapestry canvas.  Much of the work could be done using my sewing machine.  I inserted the zip in the centre of the first side seam.  I realised that I could use the material avoiding joins in two of the edges.  I ended up with the back slightly smaller than the front, but that did not matter for a 3-dimensional cover.


Reverse of cushion

I was unable to find a way of making mitred corners, but I hand-stitched the overlaps after I had hand-stitched the canvas to the backing. On the inside I caught down the surplus canvas to the back of the tapestry. I had trimmed the corners to remove some bulk.

My hand sewing would not win any prizes, but I have a serviceable cushion.

The second cushion was rather easier to complete.  The tapestry front measures 16” each way.  The kit was a Christmas present last year.  I should have disposed of the packaging in an on-going attempt to lessen clutter like another blogger who is fighting Junkitis.  However there was some yarn left over at the end and I found it and the information that this was a very easy kit from Vervaco.

This picture used thick acrylic yarn with a sheen.  I had knitted a piece using Aran wool, which came out at 16” and decided to use it as the backing for this cushion.  (Originally I was aiming to make a 20” cover, but I made this one instead and had the woollen one over.)  The two sides are not normally visible at the same time and the colours are suitable.  The kit is washable and the backing is hand-washable and should not shrink as it is pre-used wool.  Nothing like a bit of up-cycling!

Cover showing zip

Cushion cover with zip

I inserted a 16” zip between the two pieces by hand using backstitch.  I had to turn back the end of the zip to fit the sides.   I was pleased with the result, which is shown in the photograph.

The next step was to place the two pieces together with the right sides facing and join the other seams by hand.

I plan to buy a cushion pad next time I am in the nearest large town.

How to knit a cushion cover

While every care has been taken in preparing this pattern the author disclaims any liability from errors or omissions.  Please refer to the photographs and read the instructions carefully.  If you do discover any error(s) please be kind enough to tell me in a comment.

Front of cushion

Front of cushion

The illustrated buttons are Handmade Plum buttons from tinker tailors.
The illustrated cushion cover is knitted using two strands of Pennine Aran 10% acrylic yarn and 6.0mm knitting needles.  (Mine used approximately 480gms and the yarn is sold in 400g balls.)
The finished size is 20 ins x 20 ins working to a tension of 15 stitches to 4 ins.

CO 75 sts. and knit 18 rows.
Begin pattern.
1st row K. 10 P. 5 (K. 5 P. 5) 5 times K. 10

2nd row K 15 (P. 5 K. 5) 5 times K. 10
Repeat these two rows twice.
7th row as second row.
8th row as 1st row.
Repeat these two rows twice.
Continue in 12 row pattern until work measures 20 ins.
Knit 8 rows.
Buttonhole row. K. 23 sts. CO 3 sts. K. 23 sts. CO 3 sts. K. 23 sts.
Next row K. casting on 3 sts over CO sts on previous row.
Knit 8 rows.
Cast off.
To make up: fold cover with opening in desired position, overlapping the buttonhole band and button band.   With right sides together oversew seams. Turn to right side. Add buttons.


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Associated post:  Shopping List