And don't worry, I took a close up, so you could see it in all of it's brown glory.
Mmmmm. You can see the pillow on the left I re-stuffed in an attempt to help the couch earlier this year. Unfortunately, I lost the gusto to complete the project after I saw how little of a difference it made. And so there he is, brown couch with sad right side pillow. But not for long! This was my biggest project over my break! I have a lot of friends/family asking how I did it; so I'll try to explain the process in a coherent way.
Step 1. Fabric
I don't know how I chose how many yards to use. I meant to measure, but what ended up happening was lot's of gesturing at the cutting table once I was already at the fabric store. I left with about 9 1/2 yards (all they had) of some super sturdy gray canvas. Once I brought it home (I'm really proud of this step coming up here) I washed and dried it. That's right, this girl did prep work. I even documented.
Step 2. Logistics
Okay, so I guess this could have been Step 1. Or maybe a "pre-step". But often my projects are pretty haphazard. I'm the girl that thinks the pressing/measuring/cutting is the worst part of any sewing project. Seriously, I'd rather sew zippers. So this step was pretty fluid throughout the whole project. I knew that I wanted to remove the pillows (that were attached to the back, and so gross). And I knew that I wanted to get rid of that brown flappy fabric along the bottom. I also knew that I wanted to waste as little fabric as possible, and wanted the cover to fit snug, but also be removable for washing. I decided that I was going to make 2 new pillows for the back, a cover for the frame, and two covers for the cushions on the bottom. So, while the fabric was washing, I started cutting of the pillows, vacuuming, and considering the best way to remove brown flappy fabric.
Step 3. Draping
I decided that instead of getting a pre-set pattern from the fabric store, I wanted to drape and cut the pieces based on the shape of the couch itself. I wanted to make sure that the fabric fit the arms of the couch very well, and don't usually like how store bought couch covers turn out, so I just went for it. I cut large chunks of fabric, draped them over the couch, and started pinning my heart out. The thought process behind this is, if you pin it while on the couch, then take it off and sew it, you can turn it inside out and flip it around, and it will fit perfectly snug-ly (pending symmetrical couch, of course).
Step 4. Pin. Sew. Repin. Sew. Repeat, repeat, repeat.
This step took the most patience for me. There were many water breaks, and many turning the cover inside out and rightside out and back again.
You can see where I'm starting to decide how to address the bottom front, too. I decided that this was going to stay completely attached to the couch, rather than incorporate it into the cover. (This will make more sense soon).
Step 5. Finish step 4
Remember, above, at the very beginning? When I said I tend to approach my projects haphazardly? Well, here's my example. Technically I wasn't finished with step 4. But lets be real, there's only so many times that you can make minute changes to a huge project and keep motivated. So I decided to start on the couch cushions.
Yes, there's fabric everywhere, yes the lighting is horrible, but I was ecstatic to just see the thing start to come together! My favorite part right here is that I decided to "pleat" the fabric along the bottom.
Step 6. Wrap it up!
This is when it's time to motivate yourself to just get it done! Iron/steam the fabric! Trim the strings! Vacuum the terrified carpet! I purposefully planned a mother's day brunch, even though I knew the couch wasn't finished. So you know what happened? Well by darn if I didn't finish that thing on Friday. After all, mothers were coming over! I couldn't have a half-finished couch!
It's still in some serious need of steaming accent pillows. And in this picture you can see where I needed to take the original covers off the cushions so that you can't see the weird lines showing through where the original piping and zippers are. But overall, I'm super pleased. First ever couch redo. Also, now the blanket is an accent instead of a cover up.
Aaaand of course, a before and after.
boom. I'm pretty proud of myself.
Eeek! As you can se there are still teensie bits of finishing that I need to do. (on the right! That fabric that's hanging down!) But we officially have a comfortable, more pleasing to the eye, and (most importantly?) clean couch! Hooray!
Even Coale can't help but gravitate toward it, which I'm not to excited about. But hey! Can you blame him!?
For the year 2012, I decided that instead of having one big, unattainable resolution, I would write a list to look forward to. You can read more about that here. 12 Projects was on that list, and you can see the progress of those projects by clicking the button below.