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One Man’s Trash is Another Man’s Treasure: How to Make Cushion Covers without Sewing

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Have you ever wondered how to make cushion covers without sewing or how to make cushion covers without a zip? Pinching Pennies… wondering how much to recover a chair? The empty corner of my living room has been calling my name. When I came across a bench base for $35 at 9Lives I couldn’t resist. I planned to make a no sew cushion cover and also some no sew pillow covers. The no sew pillow cover tutorial will come at a later date.

Materials and Cost:

2 yards of butterfly fabric from Hobby Lobby $11.00

1 package of 1” foam batting from Hobby Lobby $11.99

Staple gun, borrowed from a friend

Plywood, a scrap from a construction friend but only a few dollars otherwise

Bench base $35 to the animals at 9Lives


  1. Measure the base of the chair, bench, couch,
    stool that you will be creating the cushion for. I had my manfriend cut me a piece of 1” plywood to fit the base of my bench. I wouldn’t go with anything less than ¾” just to keep the seat sturdy. I used a 40” x 18” x 1” piece of plywood. If your piece of furniture already has a seat than unscrew it from the base
  2. Next I used 1” foam batting and placed the plywood on top of it. I traced the outline of the plywood and then cut the shape of the seat out of the foam batting with a scissors. (I actually doubled the 1’ batting so that my seat would be cushier)
  3. Line up the batting on top of the plywood and
    place a little tape on each of the four sides.
  4. Lay fabric out on top of batting and cut enough to
    be able to cover cushion and still have about 2” extra on all sides. Center
    fabric over batting.
  5. Next flip cushion over and pull fabric tight. Use
    a staple gun to secure fabric to plywood. Start in the middle and work your way
    to the corners. Make sure you are pulling tight. Sometimes an extra hand here
    is nice to ensure a snug fit.
  6. Flip your cushion over and secure it to base of
    your furniture. I plan to use the extra
    fabric to make a no sew pillow cover.

Hope this tutorial shows that a second life is always possible for an old or used piece. I always try to reduce, reuse, and recycle. Visit your local thrift store or Craigslist to find great furniture that someone else is sick of. Give it new life for under $25! No sew pillow instructions Coming Soon!

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