We were generously given this hand-me-down rocker from some good friends, and while it is a great rocker (and has rocked some amazing babies), it just wasn’t my style. But it has wonderful bones so I knew with a little paint and some upholstery it could be great!
It was a complete DIY job; although, it wasn’t always meant to be. Originally, I had bought some fabric and we cut it to use, and even sewed a cushion but it was such poor lightweight fabric there was no way it was going to work. While trying to stuff the foam in one of the cushions, it split down the middle. So we ended up making the fabric pattern ourselves. The entire project was definitely an exercise in patience and resourcefulness. But I love how it turned out, and think that the final product was better than planned and cost $60 less than the initial iteration!
Doesn’t it remind you of Brunschwig & Fils’ iconic les touches (pictured above)? Since I knew that ordering the original fabric ($130/yd) was never going to happen, I tried Spoonflower but was disappointed in the product’s weight. I bought the basic $17.50/ yd and it was like a sheet. I probably would have been ok with the $27/ yd linen/ cotton canvas but it would have cost nearly $100 just for the fabric which was not what I wanted to spend. Oops! You live and you learn. After my mistake, I made my own pattern with a sharpie and an Ikea curtain panel for less than $30! I only wish I had done this from the beginning.
Next we cut the 2″ foam inserts (purchased at Joann fabrics all told with batting and cording for $50.) We found using a chef’s knife cut through it best; but, if you happen to have an electric knife I would recommend that. It is what they use at the fabric stores.
Next, we covered each of the foam inserts in batting and sewed it close, making the batting template about an inch or two longer than the foam insert.
Here, you can see the final product, you might be able to tell from the pic just how lightweight the fabric was. It was the same weight as a bed sheet. So you can imagine how well it worked…Word to the wise: if you want to go the Spoonflower route, buy a heavy weight fabric (I bought the basic and it didn’t work.)
So, we started fresh. I had one extra curtain panel from some Ikea Merete curtains that I am using for an upcoming project. It was a MUCH better quality fabric than the original fabric, and would have been SO MUCH cheaper. If I had just gone this route initially, it would have only cost $30 for the fabric instead of $60. The Spoonflower fabric I ordered cost $60 (for 3 yards with shipping.) So save your money and go to Ikea! It only used one panel, so you will still have a ton of extra cotton duck fabric for another project!
Since we were drawing on a pattern, we were able to lump the cut-outs as close together as we wanted. We wanted to covers to be a little bigger than the last time (they were a bit too tight), so we added two inches to each template. To do so, we used a compass and a ruler.
After the templates were drawn, I went to town drawing the dots with a jumbo chisel tip sharpie I picked up at Kmart (I ended up using two for a total cost of $6).
To get the same look as the pattern, I laid the Spoonflower fabric underneath the Ikea fabric and drew roughly the same pattern. I improvised and made them a bit more angular, more like Jenny’s and Emily’s, which I felt looked closer to the original les touches. I also freehanded the areas where the new pattern extended farther than the template.
Here you can see how the Spoonflower (fabric below) is more dot-like like a dalmatian than my interpretation (top layer of fabric).
After repeating the steps above (cutting out the templates, we sewed them together this time skipping cording altogether. Another perk of using a higher quality heavier fabric, was that we could add a zipper. You know we are going to need to wash these suckers.
So the cost for the project was $101 which consisted of the following: $15 (spray paint), free grosgrain ribbon (you could always pick some up at Joann fabric for less than $10), $30 (Ikea curtain panels you’ll have one left over), $6 (Sharpies), $50 (zippers, batting, foam inserts). With my mistake buying the Spoonflower fabric, it added another $60. But, you won’t make the same mistake! You can hardly buy an upholstered cushion for $70 much less one with a rocking chair, so we are excited! And it is gender neutral so it will be used for lots of future Thompson babies!
*UPDATE: Since making the chair, the baby arrived, Baby Jack, and we had a diaper blowout. Well, I removed the cover and threw it in the wash. And it bled 🙁 Who would have thought permanent marker would bleed? Well, obviously not me. So since then, I have redone the project with a FABRIC Sharpie. #liveandlearn #keepinitreal
I have linked up with The Inspiration Gallery at Love Grows Wild, the Creative Collective at Classy Clutter, Thoughts for Thursday at House of Malones, and Friday Favorites at Diary of a Real Housewife , and Not Just a Housewife!