DIY Patio Cushions:
How to Make Outdoor Cushions
The easiest way to instantly update your spaces for the season is to revamp your outdoor cushions! If your patio furniture cushions need some sprucing up, these easy no-sew D.I.Y. outdoor pillow ideas can help you revitalize your space and show off your style. With a little imagination, a few yards of durable outdoor fabric and an afternoon or two, you can easily enliven your outdoor benches, lounge chairs, dining chairs and chaises with some comfy cushions.
Choose Your Fabric
One great way to achieve a fresh look, especially if you have darker-toned outdoor wicker chairs and sofas, is to make D.I.Y. outdoor cushions using a durable canvas drop cloth. One drop cloth typically has enough fabric to cover two cushions and a bench. What’s better? This material is opaque enough to cover existing colors and patterns, so there’s no need to do a complete overhaul.
If you want to brighten up your outdoor oasis, there's no limit to the colors and patterns of outdoor upholstery fabrics available by the yard. Once you’ve taken measurements of each cushion, head to your local craft store – the fabric experts can help you figure out your yardage in a snap.
If you live in a sunny climate or simply want to keep your cushion colors vivid for years to come, Sunbrella® outdoor fabric is a great option. It's sold by the yard in solids and stripes in a variety of colors, so you can find a look that suits your style. The entire collection is mildew, stain and fade resistant, so whatever you choose, your new cushions will stay vibrant season after season.
Choose Your Method
There are a few ways to get the look: a sewing machine, sewing glues, staples (if you're attaching a cushion to the bottom of a wood seat) or safety pins will all do the trick. For best results outdoors, choose strong polyester thread if you're planning to use your sewing machine. Or, look for 3/8" galvanized steel staples that fit a staple gun; they resist rust best in high-moisture outdoor environments.
Get the Work Cut Out
Hold onto old outdoor cushions! You'll want to use them as a guide to create your new cushions. If you're simply recovering the old cushions, take whatever fabric you've chosen and fold it lengthwise so the wrong side of the fabric faces out. Put the front of the cushion on the fold and cut a generous hem around the cushion. If you plan to cover new cushions made from outdoor foam, use your old cushions as guides in cutting the foam to the right size. Once you have the fabric cut out, use whatever method you've chosen to create the cushion covers. If you're sewing, pin three sides of the fabric together – wrong side facing out – and sew around the edges before finishing the back seam by hand. Use the same process with sewing glue, including closing the back seam with a needle and thread. If you're stapling fabric to a base, stretch the new cloth over the foam and staple each corner. Flip the furniture over to finish stapling around the base, being sure to pull the fabric taut and smooth. After the first cushion, you'll have the method down pat!