Wednesday, July 27, 2011

No-sew Patio Furniture Cushion Re-do

I've been meaning to share this with you for some time.. like maybe since early April. :) Yeah, that is when I completed this little project! Oops! But.. better late than never! I have thoroughly enjoyed having these re-covered since for YEARS they were cushion-less thanks to neighborhood cats that used them as their loungers when they were on our front porch. Since I am allergic to cats we had to toss the old cushions and we moved the furniture to the back patio. And there they sat. And sat. But, no one sat in them since there was no cushion for the tushion. I had looked into getting cushions made for them, but custom pads are EXpensive! One piece is nearly couch-sized and the other is roughly love-seat sized, so they are rather large. Buying seat and back cushions could have worked, but since so many would have been needed, the cost of that also added up very quickly. Therefore, it was up to ME to make them myself! 

Now, truth be told, this wasn't an inexpensive project by any means. I used a fabric that is meant for outdoors, is weather and fade resistant, and I believe it was about $12/yard on sale (I'm a cheapie and not used to paying that much!) Then I had to buy the foam padding. I got the NuFoam yardage that was also freaking expensive (even though I got it on sale for 40 or 50% off as well!). I got the 2" foam that is used on boats for seats and won't disintegrate or mold. Since it will be outdoors, I "weathered" (hardy, har, har) the expense since I'm hoping these last for several years. When my husband found out how much I had spent he um.... wasn't thrilled with my DIY project anymore! But, it STILL came in less than my other two options would have been and heck, I got to pick some pretty cool fabrics!

Here's how I did it:

Here is the larger of the two pieces before I got started. You can see how they wouldn't be comfortable on your hiney without a cushion!

I had my wood  cut down to the exact size (ripped is what they call it at the hardware store if you want to sound like you know what you are talking about!). It was awesome that they did it all for me and it fit perfectly!! :) I had two pieces cut for each piece of furniture (the seat and the back).

Brooke had to get in on the picture action... of course!

Here are my basic supplies. Fabric, NuFoam, spray  adhesive (which you do NOT need as it didn't work at all!), heavy duty scissors to cut the foam, staple gun, and plenty of extra staples!

I did this on two different days. I started with the striped fabric (that I used for the seat cushions). I am going to combine pics here though to show you the different steps. 
 I laid out my fabric and then placed the boards on top, leaving enough on each side that I would be able to close the ends.
(So, I just noticed that my sweet Nicholas is in this picture and bawled my eyes out. Dammit, I miss that dog so much and am still having issues accepting that he is gone. UGH!!)

Then I placed the foam on top of the board, and trimmed off the excess. I used some good, heavy duty scissors since this is quite a chore!

Then I trimmed the fabric down to the correct size. You need to be sure to leave enough fabric that you will be able to close the ends (like a present) and be able to staple it to the bottom.

Crack kills.

Then you wrap your fabric around on one side to the back.

Fold the edge over, towards the board, so the raw edge is not exposed and won't unravel.

Staple all down the length of the board, spacing your staples a few inches apart as you go.

As I started stapling I quickly realized I needed to bust out the big guns... and use my electric staple gun (you have to plug it in). It worked SO much better!

Fold the other side of the fabric over to the back and fold the edge over again. Make this fold cover up the row of staples you just finished.

(like so)

Again, staple down the length of your fabric. Since you covered up your first row of staples you will only have one line of staples down the middle.

Go down to one open end of your fabric.

Take one corner, fold it in, and staple on the edge of the board. You will be wrapping your ends like a present! This is, afterall, a gift to yourself! :)

Do the same at the opposite end and staple all along the edge of the board (you can see it in the picture). You will then fold over the raw edge a time or two and pull it up to the board (the top in this picture) and staple it down in several spots along the edge.

Admire your lovely finished edge! :)
Ooh la la!
Repeat this process with the other end as well as your other boards/cushions.

Ok, so the first time I went shopping I only bought enough of the NuFoam for the seat cushions. I wanted to see how well it worked before buying more. When I went back to get the rest that I would need, they didn't have enough.. at either local store! Ack!!

Luckily, I'm a talker and I chatted up the girl working there and asked if she would price match the NuFoam that comes in the individual packs with the price that the yardage was on sale for (50%, I believe). She agreed and I got what I needed, but it was in smaller square instead of one continuous piece. This worked out ok though and you can't tell a difference between the cushions.
Even though both were supposed to be 2".. there was a difference as you can see! The square is on the left, yardage on the right. The thinner squares ended up being the back cushions and they are plenty thick!
These were slightly shorter than the boards for the back, but I liked it that way b/c the lip allows it to fit in behind the seat cushion and secures it nicely! 
You can sort of see how it's offset here...
There's a whole LOT of stapling that goes on...
I have the best helper in the world! :)
Ahh pretty! :)
 Once all of the edges are wrapped and stapled, you are DONE!

Place the cushions on your furniture.


I am THRILLED with how these turned out! It's so nice to have a pretty place to sit now! 


  1. Beautiful! I really like the floral print on top. That Crack kills shot is killing me. LOL! My face hurts from laughing.

  2. sooo cute!!I tried making seat cushions for our patio furniture last summer and it turned out soooo bad!Your idea seems much better :)

  3. I'm so glad I found your blog!! I am always looking for something crafty to do during naptime so that I can avoid the household chores ;) These cushions look great!

  4. Oh my gosh! Just found this! LOVE it! I am wondering oif this eould work for patio furniture that sits around pool area?

  5. I love it. BTW you had my cracking up, you're captions are the best.

  6. How are these holding up with the plywood? I want to do this but hubby is afraid the wood will get wet and rot.

  7. Great job showing step by step how this is done! Adorable daughter!

  8. Great Job with step by step instructions with great photos! Adorable daughter!


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