How to Sew Cushions for a Patio Swing


Cushions for a porch swing can take several shapes. It can be just a cushion for the seat of the swing, or it can be a cushion for the seat and the back. Or it can be some decorative cushions that just sit there, adding a decorative touch and a bit of extra padding when desired.

Things You'll Need

  • Tape measure
  • Fabric meant for outdoor use
  • Thread
  • Sewing machine
  • Foam cushion insert material
  • Decide if you just want a seat cushion, a cushion that fits against both the seat and the back, or just some nice decorative throw cushions.

  • Make or buy a pattern. If you want the cushion to cover the surface of the swing, measure the surface the cushion will cover. Armed with the measurements, or with the size you want the finished cushions to be in mind, cut pieces of paper for each surface of the cushion. The panels should be bigger than the desired finished size by one half inch in each direction, to allow for the extra room the seams take up.

  • Cut material and foam filling. Cut one piece of fabric for each panel of the pattern. Cut the foam filling to the same size as the cushion's top and bottom. If you are making throw cushions, you may want to use polyester fiberfill instead of foam.

  • Sew cushions on three sides. Place the right sides of the fabric together and sew with the wrong sides facing out.

  • Sew tie strings, if desired. To make tie strings, cut a strip of fabric the desired length of the tie and about an inch wide. Fold it in half length-wise, right side of the fabric on the inside, and sew along the edge opposite the fold. Trim off the extra area beyond the seam. Turn the strip right-side-out so the right side of the fabric shows, and press with an iron. Make as many of these as you need to tie the cushion(s) to the swing.

  • Insert foam filling and sew the fourth side. Insert the tie strings in the desired location and sew the seam, sewing the tie strings to the cushion at the same time as sewing the seam. You may want to reinforce this area by sewing over it more than once, since it will have to hold up under extra tugging than the rest of the seams.

Tips & Warnings

  • For cushions for the back of your swing, you may want tie strings on more than just one side of the cushion, to tie it at the top and bottom. If so, sew on the strings when you're sewing two opposite sides, not just on the last side.

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