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  • Writer's pictureLucy Bentley

Handcraft at Home: An Introduction to Smocking Pt.2 - Make Your Own Smocked Cushion

This tutorial will use the hand-smocking techniques outlined in part one to create a gorgeous cushion for your home! I've used velvet in the example which provides a beautiful finished result but can sometimes be a little more tricky to work with - fabrics like light-mid weight cottons will probably be the easiest, and it could be worth experimenting with the smocking techniques on different fabric types to help you decide.

For this project you will need:

For the cushion front, the size of fabric needed will vary depending on the smocking pattern:

Leaf Smocking: 71 x 58cm, to fit a 70 x 57cm smocking grid with 1cm seam allowance

Shell Smocking: 64 x 60cm, to fit a 63 x 59cm smocking grid with 1cm seam allowance

Please note, although it is possible to use wave smocking, the pattern warps the fabric and can overcomplicate measurement calculations so has not been added to this tutorial.

For the back & Construction:

- Half a metre of fabric of your choice

- Needle and thread

- Sewing machine (Optional - this can be done by hand)

- Fabric Scissors

- Ruler

- Tailors chalk or pen/pencil

- 35cm closed end zip

- Pins

- Unpicker

- Iron

- 45cm cushion pad

Step 1: On the reverse of your 'front' fabric, draw on a smocking grid of 1cm squares according to the dimensions of your chosen pattern as listed above.

Step 2: Follow the instructions detailed in Part One to create your hand-smocked fabric.

Step 3: Measure your finished smocked fabric panel, and cut a panel the same size from your 'back fabric,' then draw lines 1cm in from each edge for your seam allowance.

Step 4: With the right sides of the fabric together, sew along your bottom seam then press the seam apart.

Step 5: Iron then pin your zip face-down along the pressed seam, and use a basting stitch to tack into place.

Step 6: Sew down the sides and across the bottom of your zip to secure it into place.

Step 7: Flip your fabric to the right side, and unpick the bottom seam to reveal your zip.

Step 8: Unzip your zip half way, then with the right sides of your fabric together, pin and sew the remaining three seams.

Step 9: Turn your cushion cover the right way around, and insert your cushion pad!

Let us know how you found the tutorial, and tag photos of your cushions on Instagram with #handcraftathome for your chance to be featured!

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