Slipcover Tutorial {How to Make Piping}

This is a post series that I’m transferring from a previous blog because it’s been extremely popular. I’ll be posting these tutorials every Friday for the next couple of months, enjoy!

Slipcover piping

All the way back in the spring, I decided to make a slipcover for our couch. It’s a big project, but I was looking for something new and challenging to expand my sewing skills. It has definitely been a learning experience, and to be honest I’m not quite done yet (a lot of other projects got in the way). But I’ll be posting a series of tutorials detailing the different steps to my process.

Here’s what our couch looks like:

It’s not hideous or anything, and it’s probably the most comfortable couch I’ve ever napped on, but I thought it would be nice to have something monochromatic so it will match more of the other things I’ve decorated with. Also, so I can make cute decorative pillows!

Here’s the fabric that I chose for the slipcover:

It’s a durable duck canvas, good for everyday use and machine washing. I really wanted a medium gray, but I couldn’t find it anywhere, so I eventually settled on this rich chocolate color.

Here’s step one – learning how to make piping:

Here’s the piping I used. It’s a little thick, but it was the best that I could find. I actually really like the way that it turned out.

 Step One: Cutting Fabric Strips

Cut long strips of fabric – the longer the strips, the fewer seams you’ll get. I cut mine about 3 inches wide.

 Step Two: Sewing the Strips Together

Take two strips and line up the ends like this:

Then fold over the corner where the two strips meet and crease the fabric.

 The crease is faint, but it’s enough of a guideline for where to sew.

 Sew down the crease, cut off the corner, and iron the seam open.

Step Three: Sew the Piping

Before you cut off the amount of piping that you need, tape the piping with masking tape. If you don’t, your piping will fray really easily like this:

The tape holds it together nicely:

Attach the zipper foot (or a piping foot, but I don’t have one of those). I found that I liked putting the piping (and the needle, of course) on the right side of the foot, so that the finished piping curled to the left of the machine. Encase the piping in the fabric. Sew!

 This is actually really simple. No pinning is required, the machine practically makes the piping for you.

 Now you have piping! Check back next Friday for the next tutorial: how to make a zipper panel.

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Explorer & adventurer - mostly through scratches of ink on a page - I enjoy my husband, our twin boys, our boisterous German shepherd, and strive to live for the glory of God.
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