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Slipcover Tips – How to Choose and Care for Furniture Slipcovers


room layout showing furniture with slip covers and slip cover details



To Choose & Care For Furniture Slipcovers

Your Slipcover

  • If
    you’ve got pets or children, or you simply use your furniture a lot,
    then look for a durable fabric that’s been tested for color-fastness
    and shrinkage, and is fully machine washable such as 100% cotton or


  • Look at
    your rugs, carpets, walls and curtains and pick a color or pattern that
    blends in with or enhances your existing décor.


  • A
    patterned slipcover can look great and add a splash of color to neutral
    décor.  Solid colors are
    very versatile and can look better if you’ve got patterned wallpaper,
    rugs, curtains or carpets.


  • To help
    you make your decision, order some samples of slipcover fabrics so you
    can see which goes best with you décor.


  • Remember
    that if you want to cover dark colored upholstery, you may need to put a
    white sheet over your furniture before fitting the slipcover, to ensure
    the old color or pattern doesn’t show through.

Caring For
Your Slipcover 


  • Always
    follow the washing and drying instructions that come with your


  • If your
    slipcover can be tumble dried, a good way to get rid of creases – for
    example, if it’s been stored in a cupboard for a while – is to put your
    slipcover in the tumble drier on a low heat along with a wet flannel for
    10 minutes.

chair slip cover and slip cover detail

  • If your
    kids have been jumping on your sofa, or your furniture has been used a
    lot, your slipcover might get a bit wrinkled. 
    Creases can easily be smoothed out by lightly spraying them with
    water – a plant mister is handy for this – and pressing them out
    with your hands.

  • An easy
    way to tidy up your slipcover when you put it on is to use a wooden
    spoon or spatula to push any loose fabric into the cracks at the edges
    of the cushions.

awkward shaped slip cover

Awkward Shaped Furniture

  • Dining
    chairs with wooden backs can be transformed by covering the backs with
    batting or similar material – an old blanket would do – to add
    padding, then covering them with
    dining chair slipcovers.

  • To
    makeover a sofa or chair with wooden arms, it’s simple to add padding
    by wrapping the arms in polyester batting (available at craft shops) and
    holding it in place with string or Velcro. 
    Once you’ve fitted a slipcover over the top, your DIY padding
    will be completely hidden from view and your furniture will have a smart
    new look.


  • If you
    plan to put a slipcover on a leather sofa or arm chair, covering the
    seat in foam batting first will help the slipcover stay in place without
    slipping on the slippery leather surface.


  • Two-piece
    sectional furniture can be covered by using ordinary slipcovers for each
    section and hiding the excess fabric that would usually cover the arms
    by tucking it into the space in the middle where the two sections meet.


  • If
    you’ve got an old sofa bed that could do with an update, you can
    easily fit a slipcover over it as you would on an ordinary sofa –
    you’ll just have to remove it when you want to use it as a bed.

If you would like to make your own slip covers
then these instructions as to how to go about it, may prove useful.

Planning, measuring
and materials
for making your own slipcovers

How to make your own