Saturday, August 28, 2010

How I Got Started

Our wedding

When I got married 13 years ago I inherited an ugly couch, and as a new wife I was determined to make my little dated apartment "cute". I went out and bought fabric and a pattern for a slipcover. To my dissapointment the fit was horrible and the tuck-in and ties were awful, so I bought more fabric and made the cushions as separate pieces that sat on top of the main body slipcover. I still hated it.

Our house being built

A year later we built our first house, so I headed to the local thrift store and picked up a chair, that I was determined to make a better slipcover for. I had looked at a few pamphlets and books at the fabric store, and thought I had figured out how to make a "custom slipcover".

The ugly chair that I picked up at the local thrift store. Soon I learned this chair didn't have good lines. I now would never choose the fluffy back thing.

My first custom slipcover that I made. My recommendation..don't choose a stripe or plaid for your first slipcover.

My friends and family loved it and started asking me to slipcover their furniture. In the mean time we got pregnant with our first child, and I told my husband when we had babies I would stay home and make slipcovers...he laughed. I had my first "real" client when my baby was 3 months old. I think he forgot how determined and focused I can be when I want something. He has become wiser over the past 13 years.

I still ended up having to go back to work part time as an assistant manager at Bath and Body Works when my baby was 7 weeks old to pay the bills. I did about one to two slipcovers a month during this period for clients. By the time my baby turned a year old, my business had grown enough for me to stay home and sew. So I took a leap of faith and quit my job.

I had a display chair in a few shops (Joanns and Addie Landons) and cards up at the fabric store, and the rest of my business came from word of mouth. All my clients are now from word of mouth, I haven't had a chair in a store for about 6 years.

My family picture from Christmas last sister is a photographer. You can check out her blog at

I now have two ladies that help me sew to keep up with my growing business. I try to keep my work schedule to 2-3 days a week, because I now have 3 children. So I have my "mom" days and my "work" days. My husband is a fireman and has 4 days off in a row, so he watches the kids on my "work" days.

I have lots of designer clients, and regular repeat clients. With having the extra income I was determined to put it to good use and get out of debt. So slowly over the past 10 years I've paid off the basement, the cars, and the house...yep the house!!! Now I am working on paying off the cabin we just bought. Remember how focused I said I was? My friends think I am crazy. I might be a little bit, but I like to call it "determined" not crazy.

So if you want to learn to make slipcovers to redecorate on a budget or you want to make some extra money...learning the art of slipcovering is an invaluable tool and skill. If you love fabric and decorating and have some sewing skills you will become obsessed with the possibilites of what you can do with an ugly piece of furniture. You will become a regular at the local thrift store and craigslist.

My "How to Slipcover Video" walks you through the basics of slipcovering and will give you the skills to slipcover just about anything. I teach you to make a slipcover by pinning it on inside out. I was self taught and learned through trial and error over the past 11 years... with the DVD you can learn without going through the heartache and wasted time that I went through. I am now fast at what I do, and with practice you can be too.

So if you want on the wait list for my "how to slipcover" DVD email they are $45 plus $3 shipping. I just took the DVD to get replicated and the covers made...they said 7-10 business days. I'll email you when they are ready and have you pay via paypal. thanks


Friday, August 27, 2010

Dropcloth couch and chair

Here is another couch and chair...that I was so excited about, I forgot to take the before picture. So I'll describe them to you. The chair was a forest green, and the couch was a red/forrest green floral. My client had me redo them to use in her back yard for more seating for her daughter's wedding reception. Then they were going to be moved to her daughter new apartment as a wedding gift. I don't know about you but I would love a new set of slipcovers for my wedding gift.

She used painters dropcloths for the fabric....some people love this and other's don't. Some think the fabric is weaker in spots and you have to be ok with the random flaws.

Couch after made of painter dropcloths
close up of front of arm of couch
chair after made of painter dropcloths

Close up of the scrolled back on the couch with piping.

close up of front of chair... I did a band along the front with piping at the top, so the fit stayed tight. I like to do it this way when you have a T cushion and no skirt.


Friday, August 13, 2010

Menswear Wool couch

This client decided to go from floral to a little more masculine. She chose a wool, menswear fabric. I love the way it turned out. She was ready to get rid of the couch when her designer talked her into slipcovering it. She was hesistant at the word slipcover... but went for it anyways. She LOVED it. It changed the whole feel of the room. So much better.

close up of fabric


Saturday, August 7, 2010

Newsboy hat pattern

I don't know if you noticed but this fabric is left over from the pillows I made for my front room (an older post).

So last year in the spring when work slowed down a little bit, I made a hat pattern and started making myself some hats. My sisters died over them, so I made them some too, then my neighbors wanted them, so then I started selling them on Then my slipcover work exploded again, so I put my etsy store on vacation mode.

Since I still have people that ask me to make them a hat, and I don't have the time. I decided to sell the pattern for $10.50 on as an e-file. It's only taken me 6 months to actually follow through and make the pattern into an e- file and write up the sewing instructions.

These hats only take about 1/4 yard for the outside fabric and 1/4 yard for the inside fabric (lining). They are reversible...and upholstry weight cotton fabric works all those scraps you've got laying around will work great.

I love having the option to make a homemade gift for birthday parties, christmas, etc. They usually take about 45 minutes to an hour to make.

This pattern includes a pattern for a regular and small adult size plus a child size 2T-4T. It also includes a materials needed list, and step by step sewing instructions. This pattern is unisex as well. My boys wear their hats all the time. I even made one for my husband out of a chocolate brown wool.

To use the button below you need to have my email handy ( to complete the transaction. Thanks

Here are some photos of some of the hats I made.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Cabin dresser and mirror

So this summer hasn't been very productive for me and my cabin project...but a few weeks ago we did take a dresser and mirror up there and painted them.When I say "we" that's not me and my's me and my running partner Camille. Heber doesn't paint. In between coats of paint we headed to the local thrift store in Heber City. I think it's call St. Lawrence Thrift Store.

I got a long upholstered bench that I am going to slipcover for the entry at the cabin ($10), so the kids can sit down and put their shoes on. Camille scored a free chair and head board (they had a free pile out back). Then she got an awesome coffee table for $5.

My mom was going to give the dresser and mirror to DI, but I told her I could use I decided to use the paint from the kitchen cabinets for the dresser, since I had some left.

Work in progress on the dresser. I am really bad at taking before pics sometimes. But it was the dated oak looking dresser.
The dresser all put back together in the was the perfect size for my nook.

Close up of the dresser. I decided to keep the hardware.

Before picture of the mirror. I loved the shape and I only want a few big things on the walls...I don't want alot of knick knacky cluttery things.

After.. I painted the mirror a mustard yellow color that matched the club chairs.

We took a little playhouse up and leveled some of the ground out back. My boys still want to build a log fort though.