When you find yourself spending a lot of time in your home, you start to notice some of those things you have been meaning to fix but never found the time to. Today, we are going to show you how to recover that worn out ottoman.
If you’re looking to re-cover your ottoman you can follow along with our Youtube video here:
To do this project, you will need to gather a few supplies. We have chosen a vinyl fabric to recover our ottoman, as it receives a lot of wear, but you could also choose a heavier fabric. When you are sewing with these heavier fabrics, We recommend using HomeDec thread.
Wondering what other kinds of fabric you could use to make over your ottoman? We’ve found this list to spark a few ideas: https://bit.ly/3ngAplu
HomeDec is available in three weights, for different effects. We will be using the 60 weight to sew the seams, and the 30 wt to add some bold topstitching lines. In both cases, we recommend using the 60wt in the bobbin to maintain the seam strength. HomeDec is available in 20 colors, so it will be easy to find a good match.
You can find HomeDec threads at a shop near you, or online here: https://shopwonderfil.com/product-category/homedec/
We have also picked a couple of large shank buttons. You’ll also need a curved sewing needle to attach the buttons, some pliers and a screw driver to remove the old cover, and a staple gun with ½ “ staples to re-attach your new cover. It is also useful to have a seam roller when you are working with vinyl.
Because this ottoman was constructed with squares of fabric joined together, we’ve decided to copy the design. An ottoman is usually a cube shape, which is a fairly simple shape to recover. First, turn the ottoman upside down to determine how the old cover was attached.
You may need to unscrew the legs to remove the cover and pull off the square of fabric that finishes the underside. Using the point of your screwdriver, twist off the old staples enough to grab, then with the pliers pull the staples out. Take caution when doing this and wear some protective gloves to protect your hands if the screwdriver slips.
Once all the staples have been removed snip any threads that may be holding buttons in place and gently pull the cover off. You can use the old cover pieces to make a pattern for you new cover by tearing apart the seams and laying out all the individual pieces.
but because this particular ottoman just has square pieces, I have decided to just measure the length and width of the squares and cut out one pattern piece out of a stiff paper
You’ll need to cut 12 square pieces for the top and sides, and 8 squares for around the bottom with a 1 ½” length added to wrap around the bottom of the ottoman. Trace the pattern onto the back of the vinyl fabric. Ensure that you leave enough room between the pieces to allow for a ½” seam allowance. Now you can get sewing!
Here are a few of our tried and true tricks to make sewing with vinyl easier. Use a large eye non-stick needle in your machine.
If your machine has a dual-feed system or a walking foot attachment, use this to keep the machine from sticking to the fabric and causing skipped stitches.
If you don’t have a walking foot, try stitching over strips of tissue paper acting as a sort of tearaway stabilizer to be pulled away later to prevent the sticking.
With HomeDec 60wt in the needle and bobbin of your machine join the squares in pairs. Press open the seam with a seam roller.
Switch to 30wt HomeDec in your needle and run an even line of topstitching along both sides of the seam.
Now join two pairs together (two squares with two rectangular shapes x 4 and 2 squares to two squares for the top piece), and again run two lines of topstitching along both sides of the seam.
Where the 4 corners meet the material can be fairly bulky. Try hammering the fabric on the inside to flatten out the bulk before stitching or use a hump jumper to assist the sewing foot over the bulky seam.
You will end up with 4 squares that wrap around the sides of your ottoman and 1 square for the top side. Sew all 4 of the side squares right sides together, and top stitch along the seams. (Note: make sure the longer rectangle pieces are at the bottom all the way around, to allow for going under the ottoman to secure it)
Now, place the top squares right sides together with the sides, and pin or clip the corners to match.
Stitch around, taking care to not stretch the fabric and keep the corners matched. If desired, topstitch this seam from the outside with the 30wt thread in your needle.
Slip the cover over the ottoman and place the whole unit face down on a firm surface. Check to make sure your corners are lined up perfectly to the corners of the cube.
Pull down firmly and place one or two staples in each corner to temporarily hold the cover in place.
Flip your unit over to check that everything is lined up how you like and flip it back over. Continue stapling around the bottom folding the excess in at the corners and adding several staples to hold the corners tight and trim any excess fabric.
We’ve decided to add a decorative button to the top of our ottoman. You can find decorative shank buttons at your local craft store, or online through Etsy from creators local to you! https://www.etsy.com/ca/search?q=shank%20button%20 To add your Shank button to your ottoman thread a needle with 4 strands of 30wt HomeDec.
Our unit came with a hole already drilled through the top of the wooden structure. In this case, simply run the needle through the underside of the ottoman.
And bring it up through the fabric and the button shank.
Run the needle back through to the inside of your ottoman and either staple the thread down or secure with a bead to keep the thread from tearing through the fabric eventually.
Bring the needle back through the top, tie a couple of knots and tuck it under the button.
Attach the bottom panel and feet back to the underside of the ottoman and secure it back in place with the hardware it came with.
Your ottoman now looks brand new and ready for years more of service when you want to kick your feet up.
Be sure to tag us on social media using the hashtag #wonderfil so that we can see all of your lovely creations. You can find threads like HomeDec and more in a shop near you, or online when you visit www.shopwonderfil.com. You can also sign up for our free newsletter to receive more educational sewing tips, tutorials, and free patterns. Register by clicking here! We’ll see you again next time!