How to Recover Patio Cushions Without Sewing

If your patio cushions are outdated or dingy, there's no need to spend a fortune buying new ones. Instead, use an inexpensive canvas drop cloth to give them a modern makeover. No sewing is required for these simple cushion covers, and as an added bonus, they are removable and washable.

(Image: Trisha Sprouse)

Things You'll Need

  • Canvas drop cloth (large enough to cover your cushions)
  • Ruler or measuring tape
  • Chalk
  • Scissors
  • Iron-on adhesive tape (ultra-hold)
  • Iron
  • Sticky back hook-and-loop fastener for fabric (strips or individual dots)
(Image: Trisha Sprouse)


    • A 6-by-9-foot canvas drop cloth was used in this project to cover one bench and two chair cushions, but you may need to use a different size if you have more than three cushions or larger furniture.
    • You may want to cut off any tags or strings from the cushions before re-covering them to ensure a smooth fit.
    • Be sure to use hook-and-loop fastener with sticky backs specifically made for fabric, as these cushion covers are designed to be removable and washable. 

Step 1

First, wash and dry the canvas drop cloth. Once the drop cloth has been laundered, fold it in half lengthwise so the wrong side of the fabric is facing out. Line up the front of the patio cushions along the folded edge of the fabric, spacing them out evenly.

(Image: Trisha Sprouse)

Step 2

Measure the depth of each cushion and use this measurement to mark the fabric around the cushion with chalk, except for along the folded edge.

(Image: Trisha Sprouse)

Step 3

Cut out the fabric, following the chalk line around the cushion. Do not cut the folded edge of the fabric, though.

(Image: Trisha Sprouse)

Step 4

Insert the cushion into the fabric so the front of it is tucked in tightly along the folded edge, and make sure the top and sides of the fabric match up evenly when you fold it over the top of the cushion.

(Image: Trisha Sprouse)

Step 5

Cut two strips of iron-on adhesive tape, each strip long enough to fit along both sides of the cushion. Lift the top flap of fabric up and place each strip right against the edges of the cushion with the paper side facing up. Iron the strips into place with an iron set to medium heat, following the manufacturer's directions for setting the adhesive. Generally, it takes a few seconds of heat on each strip.

(Image: Trisha Sprouse)

Step 6

Allow the adhesive strips to cool for a few minutes and then remove the cushion from between the fabric. Peel the paper backing off of both strips.

(Image: Trisha Sprouse)

Step 7

Fold the fabric back over, lining up the top and sides evenly. Use a medium-heat iron to press the fabric along the sides where you placed the strips, again following the manufacturer's directions to set the adhesive. Allow the strips to cool for several minutes to ensure the fabric is bonded together.

(Image: Trisha Sprouse)

Step 8

Use the opening in the back to turn the fabric right-side out, and then insert the cushion into the cover. Be gentle to avoid ripping the side seams as you wiggle the cushion into place.

(Image: Trisha Sprouse)

Step 9

Turn the cushion around so the opening in the back is facing you. Fold the raw edge on the bottom fabric over by roughly 1/2 inch and press into place with an iron. Be sure to fold the corners in, too.

(Image: Trisha Sprouse)

Step 10

Peel and stick one side of the hook-and-loop fasteners along the bottom folded edge, spacing them 1/2 inch apart (or use one long fastener strip). Pull the top flap of fabric down to see where it meets the bottom flap snugly, and then peel and stick the opposite side of the hook-and-loop fasteners on the top flap of fabric, lining them up to correspond with the bottom fasteners. Press firmly to ensure the fasteners adhere completely to the fabric.

(Image: Trisha Sprouse)

Step 11

Join the top and bottom hook-and-loop fasteners together, pressing them together firmly.

(Image: Trisha Sprouse)

Get those party invitations ready because you're going to want to show off your stylish new patio cushions.

(Image: Trisha Sprouse)
(Image: Trisha Sprouse)
(Image: Trisha Sprouse)
(Image: Trisha Sprouse)

Watch the Video Tutorial

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