Saturday, April 7, 2012

Piping Hot

I never thought I'd say this, but I love my dog. Those of you who know me, know that I never ever even wanted a dog. Then when I got married, I needed to compromise. Luckily, we found Simon and he is the sweetest dog. Well, the sweetest dog until he starts chewing things.

Last weekend when I was washing the sheets, Simon decided that he wanted to chew on the memory foam mattress topper on the bed. He took a few big chunks out of the foam. He didn't actually ingest any, so that was the bright side.

A few positives came out of this: we bought a brand new mattress (nothing fancy, but certainly more comfortable than the old one) and now I have all this foam to use for projects.

My first project was the make a new cushion for the bench that Simon sits on in front of the window in our mudroom. Surprisingly, he chewed through a corner of the cushion that came with the bench. Who is surprised by that? Oh right, no one.

I am starting to feel pretty comfortable with my sewing machine. I knew that I could made a basic cushion for the bench, so I decided to jazz it up a little with some piping. The piping did prove to be a little challenging for me and my tiny sewing machine. First, I measured the current cushion so I could use those measurements for the new cushion. I cut out 6 rectangles - 2 for the top/bottom, 2 for the long sides, and 2 for the short sides. I decided to use outdoor canvas fabric so it will (hopefully) hold up better.

I consulted with a sewing expert, my mom, on how to properly attach the piping. She suggested that I sew it to one piece first instead of sewing it in between the two pieces at the same time. So I laid the fabric right side up and then lined up the raw edge of the piping with the raw edge of the fabric. I pinned and sewed this all the way around the fabric for the top of the cushion. 

 I was really excited when I folded the piping over and found this! Success!

The next step was to attach the sides to the top piece. Again, I lined up the fabric with right sides facing and the piping between them. I pinned and sewed one side at a time, with the side that had the original stitching facing up so I could follow that line.

I was so surprised and excited by how good this was turning out that I wanted to just quit while I was ahead! Luckily for Simon, I forged ahead. I attached the bottom piece onto 3 of the sides, leaving one end open so I could eventually stuff the foam inside. Next, it was time to cut out a piece of foam. I used my electric knife to cut through the foam and it worked like a charm. Fortunately, Bill was distracted by a video game and didn't know I was doing this until after I finished! I thought it was good that I finally used the electric knife for something!

Anyway, I brought the foam up to my craft room and stuffed it inside the cover. It fit! Things were really going too smoothly at this point!

The rest of the project actually went just as smoothly. I hand sewed the final side closed and then was finished! The cushion fits perfectly on the bench. It took a little coaxing, but Simon eventually climbed up and he seems to enjoy it.

This is his happy face, I swear.

 Simon and I are thrilled with how the cushion turned out. He's sleeping out there on the bench as I write this! The piping was really pretty simple to work with once I got the hang of it. I bought a little extra and can't wait to use it again for another project. It makes the finished product look more professional than homemade. Have you ever worked with piping? How about had a project turn out way better than you expected? I'd love to hear about it in the comments. :)

Thanks for reading,
Kathleen Linked up at:

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