How to Make Bolster Cushions

A bolster cushion is a round, elongated cushion that provides a striking contrast in style to other cushions in your sitting room or living room. These cushions are mostly used in beds, sofas, day beds or lounges. On beds, bolster cushions can be used as very distinctive accessories for other soft furnishings round your home, or can be used to give support to other cushions or pillows. Furthermore, bolsters come in a range of fabrics from rich velvet to coarse natural cloth and can be covered to contrast or match with the surrounding.  You can find a range of sizes of bolster pads in any departmental store. Bolster covers can be made in several attractive ways and the article will primarily focus on how to make bolster cushions.

  • In order to make your bolster cushions, you would need a fabric of your choice, sewing pins, zipper, sewing machine, scissors, welt cord, foam cushion and tape measure
  • The first step is to cut out the body. Cut a piece of fabric equal to the length of the circumference of the bolster pad, with an additional 1.5cm seam allowance all round. It is advisable to make a cutting plan in advance if the bolster is exceptionally fat. Once the body is cut, it is time to cut the ends. You need to cut two rectangles of bolster fabric that should be equal to the circumference by the radius, plus 1.5cm all round. As per your choice, the cut can be made across the length or width of the fabric
  • Then it is the process to make up the body. You need to fold the main piece in half lengthways with right sides together. Then stitch down the length of the seam so that it leaves an opening in the center for the zip. With tacking and press open, hold the seam closed and center the zip face down on the seam. Once done, tack down (1cm approximately) on each side from seam. Machine or hand stitch zip in place by stitching down across both ends and on each side. Then turn right side out after removing the tacking
  • The next step is all about preparing the ends. You need to stitch along the short edges of each end piece with right sides together, taking approximately a 1.5 cm seam allowance. On one long edge of each end piece turn under a 1.5cm hem and press the seams open. Turn and keep pressing. Close the pressed edges by using strong thread work two rows of gathering hand or machine stitches
  • The next step is to add the piping. All you need to do is to cut two lengths of contrast piping. Each should be strong enough to fit round the circumference of the bolster, with a plus 4 cm for joining. Matching the raw edges together, pin and tack the piping around both ends of the main body, and stitch the ends by using a zipper foot. Once you have successfully added the piping, the next step to learn how to make bolster cushions is attaching the ends. To attach ends you need to slip an end piece over one end of the main body tube, with matching raw edges and right sides together. Using zipper foot, go ahead to pin, tack and stitch. After clipping and grading seam allowances press them towards the end. Repeat the same to attach the other end piece
  • Finally the last stage is to finish the ends. Through one end of the cover, insert the bolster pad but make sure its ends align with the piping. Fasten the threads after gathering at one end. Repeat the same at the other end. Following manufacturer’s instructions cover to self-cover buttons, and stitch over gathers at every end

Follow these simple steps to unearth the process of how to make bolster cushions.


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