Making Your Own Sofa Slipcover: A DIY Primer

Slipcovers save lives. Ok, they don’t actually save lives. They do, however, save furniture from being kicked to the curb. We’ve already professed our love for the DIY slipcover. And we’ve shared the unreasonable amount of joy we find in taking a treasured — read: super comfortable, favorite snuggly spot — piece or pieces that are past their prime (oh hello there, 1980s!) and making them like new again. For just a fraction of the cost of new furniture. 

And all with the simple aid of some beautiful new fabric (psst… we have a few of those) fitted to taste on your old sitting pal.

Slipcovers are to furniture what a gorgeous cashmere sweater or new leather coat is to your favorite old shirt. Presto! Fresh and new outfit again! 

If you’d like to revisit our love letter to slipcovers basics, hop on over here. Then come on back. Because here’s where it gets good. 

Sometimes starting over with something brand new is perfect. Other times, D-I-Y are the three best letters in the English language.

Over the next few posts, we’ll give you the how-to overview. The answers to the questions: I’m sold on slipcovers — what are my options? Can I do it myself?

Short version: you can absofreakinglutely DIY slipcovers! What’s more, there’s a spectrum of DIY options to choose from. It’s all a question of how much time and energy you’d like to invest. And what look you’d like to end up with? 

We’ll look at a few options, give you the basics of each, and offer you some resources to guide you step-by-step through whatever you choose. 

Having found your way to KOVI, we hope you see you’ve found the only fabric company you’ll ever need. And we’ve also scoured the internet so that your DIY journey can be every bit as simple and streamlined.

In future posts, we’ll look at other furniture pieces, but let’s start our how-to journey with sofas. And let’s start with a basic assumption: your sofa is sturdy (pro tip: give it a wiggle if you’re not sure. Loose or steady?), and your cushions are sufficiently stuffed to your desired effect. 

All good? Great! Let’s begin.

So-So at Sewing?

Maybe sewing just isn’t your jam. No problem. No-sew slipcovers aren’t relegated to that “just throw a blanket or sheet over the sofa and call it done” look. 

We mentioned using a coat or a sweater to refresh a look. You get that, right? Great. Well, just like you can buy off the rack or fully tailored, the no-sew option is sort of a more elegant and adjustable version of off the rack. With similar advantages: fast, cheaper, and easily changeable.

First, the fabric. Here your options are fairly limitless. Sort of. You, for sure, can use any fabric you choose that fits your current needs more seamlessly (pun intended). However, consider what the fabric is going over. 

Obviously, as proud as we’re sure you’ll be having refreshed your family’s movie throne, we’re equally sure that — as the resident DIY magician — you’d prefer your guests not to be able to see behind the proverbial curtain.

So, particularly with the no-sew option, we recommend a heavier, less wrinkle-prone fabric. That way, you’re less likely to see the ghost of the fabric seams past poking through. Once you’ve chosen your fabric, you have options for how to go about making your slipcover.

We love Robin Johnson’s simple and smart approach. Following her step-by-step process will work for most sofa styles and requires nothing but tucking and pinning. Quick and easy, you’ll be done and back to chillin’ on your “new” sofa in minutes.

Some folks find a pitfall of no-sew slipcovers can be that sometimes the cover may… well… slip. You know this experience, too. Lounging on the couch, binging your favorite show, and ever so slowly, the cover slides off the cushions. Or you wake from an otherwise stellar Sunday nap to find your smooth sofa is a wrinkled, tangled mess.

Dan The Technology Man offers a strapping solution to this problem — literally. With very little effort or investment, he’ll help your sofa get covered and make sure it stays put too.

Finally, if you’re up for a slightly more involved process, we think you’ll love the clean look of the approach The Simple Farmhouse offers. Detailed and thorough yet super easy to follow, her how-to is on point. Though we would suggest dropping the drop cloth idea in favor of one of KOVI’s many, many durable and versatile options like our eco-friendly and performance-grade Crypton cotton fabric. 

So, You Like To Sew?

Perfect. If dabbling as a seamstress doesn’t seem to stress you out (see what we did there?), you can totally raise your DIY slipcover game. As you would imagine, adding sewing to the mix spans a spectrum of complexity. We’d like to throw you a couple of options at either end of that spectrum.

Checking back in with another video from Robin Johnson, we find hers to be one of the least time-consuming approaches. A kind of a hybrid no-sew and sew, we especially love the simplicity of her how-to take on individually covering cushions — an often cited challenge with the no-sew options.

If you’re up for an adventure, the deep dive how-to that Mimzy & Company offers is your ticket. It’s super detailed and precise — including adding welting (those covered seams). When you’re done, your sofa won’t just look slipcovered, it’ll look like a brand new sofa.

The sewing-your-own slipcover option isn’t for everyone. But if you’re up for the task — to whatever degree — you’ll find the results well worth the effort. A little time and effort add up to a lot of time making memories in your freshly reimagined space. You got this.

And then There’s Kovi’s Convenient Custom Covers

And all that we’ve explored — as any cursory Google search reveals —  is really just a bit of a curated primer to the myriad of options for DIYing your sofa slipcover. Our hope here was to demystify the process a bit, acquaint you with options, and connect you with detailed resources. 

After all of this, we hope you’re feeling inspired and empowered to get started!

However, you may also now be feeling like you’d like an even simpler option. Well — and this won’t be the last time we mention this — we’ve got you covered! Again, pun intended. You’re welcome. 

KOVI offers custom-made slipcovers. The process is as easy as clicking here and filling out our online form (or calling us), choosing the perfect fabric for you from one of our 20,000+ options, and ordering. 
Get started today, and your new custom slipcover can be on its way to you soon. More slipcover DIYs to come. Stay tuned.