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Sew vintage-style bench cushions: free sewing pattern

Vintage-style bench cushions - home craft ideas -

Use favourite vintage fabrics, or even an old shirt, to create patchwork covers.

You will need

● long, thin pillow-shaped bolster
● paper
● paper scissors
● tape
● measuring tape
● fabrics
● fabric scissors
● tailor’s chalk or water-soluble fabric pen
● pins
● sewing machine
● iron
● old shirt (optional)

To make

1 Make a template for your cover out of paper, using the bolster measurements.

2 Lay the pattern out. You can use one piece of fabric or create a patchwork from offcuts – both shown here – if doing this, make sure each strip is the same depth as your template.

3 Starting at one end of the paper shape, build up your design, overlapping the material by 1.5cm. Repeat for the back.

4 Place the first two sections of fabric right sides together. Pin along the edges you had overlapping, retaining a 1.5cm seam. Stitch along this line. Add the next piece, with right sides facing. Pin, sew and repeat with your other strips until you have enough patchwork.

5 Form the back panel in the same way, then iron the seams out flat. To use a shirt button panel as a closure, cut either side to create a strip 8cm wide and the same depth as the patchwork. Pin it right sides together to an end strip of fabric with a 1.5cm seam allowance, and repeat to attach it to a piece of material from your front panel. You should be left with one long strip of patchwork with the buttons in the centre. Iron these last seams.

6 Fold this length of material in half, right sides facing, and pin at intervals along the edges. Starting at one of the button ends, sew around the three open sides, leaving a 1.5cm seam. Remove the pins as you go.

7 Undo the buttons and turn the cover the right way, pushing the corners out neatly and ironing flat. Feed the bolster pad inside, then do up the fastenings.

To watch a video of Sarah making these projects and to download patterns, visit

You might also like…

All kinds of cushions to make
See all of our patchwork projects, plus a beginner's guide
See all of Sarah Moore's craft projects for Country Living
Buy 'Homemade Gifts Vintage Style' by Sarah Moore (Kyle Cathie, £16.99) 


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