How to Measure Your Ottoman Slipcovers

An ottoman is an indispensable furnishing item for your home, but they do take a pounding with people putting feet up, setting trays on them, and spilling coffee or wine, not to mention the cat that loves to lie there while kneading the upholstery endlessly. 

Making ottoman slipcovers is an easy solution to keep your ottomans looking fresh and prevent further damage to the underlying structure of the ottoman. 

Knowing how much fabric to purchase for your ottoman upholstery project can be a challenge, but not if you measure correctly. Here are the ins and outs of measuring your ottoman for slipcovers.

Measuring for Square or Rectangular Ottoman Slipcovers

You will need the following to measure your ottoman:

  • Fabric measuring tape (or a string and yardstick)
  • Paper and pen
  • Calculator if you aren’t great at math to help you calculate the pattern repeat

Steps to Take When Measuring Square or Rectangular Ottomans

1. First, measure your ottoman on the top from left to right. Write down this measurement as your width and be sure to add a one-inch allowance to accommodate all the hems and seams. 

2. Next, measure your ottoman from front to back, which will give you the length of the ottoman. Write this measurement down, including an inch allowance for hems and seams on either side.

3. If your ottoman has a top pad or cushion, you should multiply your length by three so you can have enough fabric to upholster the top and bottom of the cushion, and then also have enough fabric to cover the top of the ottoman frame. 

4. Finally, measure from the top of the ottoman to the bottom edge of the ottoman frame or to the floor if the slipcover is to reach the floor. Write this measurement down and add an inch allowance for hems.  

If your ottoman has a top cushion, then you will need to add another inch allowance to cover the side of the ottoman up to the top frame. 

Measuring for Round or Oval Ottoman Slipcovers

When measuring a round or oval ottoman for a slipcover, you would measure the top in the same manner as the square or rectangular ottoman. With a round ottoman, the width and length will be the same measurement. With an oval ottoman, the length will be a larger measurement than the width. 

With a cushioned ottoman, multiply your length measurement by three if you have to include an ottoman cushion in your project. Add an inch to each measurement for hems and seams. 

The difference in the slipcover measurement comes in with the sides of an oval or round ottoman. Here you would measure the distance of the circumference of the ottoman. Add an inch for hems and seams. If there is a pillow top, then add another inch for the ottoman frame at the top. 

If You’re Not Sure About Pattern Matching Your Ottoman Slipcover

While it’s relatively easy to make a slipcover that is plain or has a very small pattern scale, it can be a challenge when you are dealing with a large pattern. Knowing how much fabric to order when your pattern is large can be difficult. 

Luckily, the Kovi yardage calculator can help you determine your basic fabric measurements. The Kovi Fabrics consultants can advise you on the vertical repeat required based on the guidance of the bolt of upholstery fabric you have chosen. 

When you have ordered the correct amount of fabric, you need to center the patterns of your fabric. This can require that you cut off sections to align patterns. Be sure to fold the extra in while you measure and match, and only cut off the excess when you are entirely sure that your pattern matches up correctly and that a different section won’t work better. 

If it’s your first time making an ottoman slipcover, it may be best to opt for a plain or small patterned fabric to ensure you don’t have to deal with the pattern match too. 

Deciding on a Style of Ottoman Slipcover for Your Home

With your design project, you can also consider many different ottoman styles, and these may influence your slipcover pattern and final measurement. 

Consider these style choices and how you can accommodate them in the measurement for your ottoman slipcovers:

  • A “Skirted” Ottoman Slipcover

With this type of ottoman slipcover, you would add an additional inch for each of your ottoman’s corners to the sides of your ottoman pattern. Use the extra four inches to make four equal flat pleats on each corner. 

  • Corded or Piped Ottoman Slipcover

Matching cords and piping can be a real dealmaker when designing your ottoman slipcover. To help with the measurements, you can add an additional inch to the top cushion length and width sections that you use for piping. Simply cut this off when making the slipcover and the lengths for piping are ready. 

  • Additional Trim Ideas for Your Ottoman Slipcover 

To complete your ottoman slipcover, you can also add trimmings such as tassels, cords, and gimp. Use trim to hide seams, improve the overall appearance by adding a long fringe at the lower edge of the ottoman skirt, or make a cheeky ottoman slipcover that only covers the seat of the ottoman, while leaving the stylish wooden legs bare. 

The Final Cut

Your ottoman slipcovers are a personal statement that you make while salvaging a tired furniture item or to match your existing decor. 

Using a fabric calculator such as the Kovi Fabrics yardage calculator can help you determine the standard yardage you need for your slipcovers, but speaking to a Kovi Fabrics consultant can help you work out the pattern repeat or vertical repeat you need to achieve a professional finish with patterns that line up well. 

Making an ottoman slipcover can be easier than you think with a little sewing experience, correct measurements, and great fabric from Kovi Fabrics online. 

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