Piped Cushions

image of a finished piped cushionAdding piping to a simple cushion gives a more defined edge to enhance the shape and define the edges.

It can match, contrast or co-ordinate with the main cushion fabric.

If a patterned fabric is used make sure a suitable part of the pattern is positioned in the centre of the cushion.

The instructions below are for a piped round cushion which can be used as a padding on a chair seat or to add a finishing touch to a bed.

Image refers to the colour code key for the diagrams


  • Cushion pad in the desired size.
  • Suitable fabric for the cover.
  • Matching thread.
  • Piping cord, long enough for the circumference of the cushion.
  • Pencil, string and drawing pin.

Making a Round Piped Cushion:

  1. Measure the diameter of the cushion pad, place the tape measure from seam to seam and add a seam allowance of 1" (2.5 cms).
  2. Image refers to step 2 of making a piped cushionCut 1 square of fabric, 2" (5 cms) larger than the required diameter of the cover. If patterned fabric is used, make sure to centre any design on the fabric. Fold the square into quarters. Cut a length of string 8" (20 cms) longer than the radius of the cover so there is enough string to tie around the pencil and drawing pin. Anchor the drawing pin in the folded corner of the fabric, with the string the same length as the radius of the cover plus the seam allowance. Draw an arc from edge to edge. Cut along the marked line through all thicknesses and unfold.
  3. Using the circle of fabric as a pattern, cut another circle of fabric.
  4. Pin the covered piping cord around the edges onto the right side of 1 piece of fabric, matching the raw edges with the cord facing inwards.
  5. Snip both seam allowances at 1" (2.5 cms) intervals to help ease the piping around the curve and so that it lays flat. Stitch the piping cord in place, using a zipper foot on the sewing machine so that the stitches are close to the cord.
  6. Image refers to steps 4 to 7 of making a piped cushionPlace the 2 pieces of fabric, right sides together, with the piping between the layers and facing inwards. Pin and stitch 2 thirds of the way round, leaving an opening big enough to insert the cushion pad. Use a zipper foot on the sewing machine so that the stitches are close to the cord.
  7. Fasten the ends of the thread securely.
  8. Insert the cushion pad.
  9. Turn under the raw edges of the opening in line with the remainder of the seam and slipstitch across the opening.

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