DIY Recovering Pop Up Camper Cushions

We had to stop working on the actual camper this weekend because of freezing temps.  I was super disappointed as we were so close to getting things near finished.  Putting off that work allowed me to finish a lot of sewing.

This part of our pop up camper redo is probably my favorite so far.  Making cushions is not really quick or easy but it is rewarding and didn't take nearly as long as my curtains.  The cushions in our pop up were the original 2001 cushions.  The interior foam was clean and looked brand new.  However, the covering was drab and worn.  I worked this right into my color scheme.

One thing that I didn't anticipate with this project was the amount of fabric that it would take in total.  Given that I had picked a mint deer print fabric for my valances, I was working with this as my based color.  While at Walmart, I found some fabric that has worked perfectly.  Walmart has a Waverly Inspirations line of fabric that has great patterns and colors.  Since this is an entire line, many of the fabrics and colors coordinate.

This shows the fabric.  I used the stripe for the top of cushion fabric on the seat cushions and the grey and white on the back front cushions.  I used the aqua for all of the piping.

I decided to mix prints again for this and made the bottom top of my cushions out of the bright stripe fabric.  The edge pieces were of the grey and white print.  For the top cushions, I did the edge pieces in the stripe and body pieces in the grey and white.  With the aqua piping, Everything ties in nicely, and I love it.

These cushions are box cushions.  This means, that the sewing is just to create a fabric box really with a zipper to keep everything in place.

Everything should fit snug when finished but not too tight.  There is little margin of error.  This means lots of measuring and double checking to make sure before putting things together.

After measuring and cutting the fabric, I sized everything to be sure by laying everything on the appropriate section of the cushion.  Laying the fabric flat, I could trim any edges and make adjustments with ease.  It is helpful to pin and size each piece to ensure a proper fit.

These cushions require a top piece, a bottom piece and four side pieces (2 short and 2 long).  Additionally, it is important to cut one of the long side pieces a little larger for the zipper.  Piping needs to be made in long strips for easy use.

I ordered a large roll of piping for this project.  I knew that I would have enough for curtains and for any accent pillows that I would make.  Amazon Prime is my easy way to get these types of things.  I used Wrights 183 9000-29A Cotton Piping, 50-Yard, 6/32 inches Natural.  This was only about 27 cents per yard.  Super cheap!

I used a shorter piece of this fabric and cut it into 3 inch wide strips to give me a nice piece to work with and sewed them together end to end to give me the length then pressed my seams out.

Using the zipper foot gives a close edge when making piping.  Place your piping into the fold and close sewing a close to the piping as you can get.
Once the piping was done, I started to attach the piping to the edges of the top and bottom pieces of each cushion.

I continued using my zipper foot to attach the piping to the cushion fabric to ensure a close seam.
 When I turned a corner, I clipped a v into the corner so that the piping would lay flat.

Next I worked on the edges or the sides of the cushions.  I worked a zipper into these cushions so that they can be removed an washed easily.  I used Dritz 44236 Nylon Upholstery Zipper, Cream, 45-Inchbut it might be easier to use a cut to size zipper.  If I had to do it over again, that is what I would have done.  Here is an example of one: Dritz 44238 Cut-to-Size Nylon Upholstery Zipper, Cream, 3-1/4-Yard.  I watched a video to help me with the zipper for this project.

I pinned the zipper down with right sides facing.

I stitched close to the zipper using a zipper foot.  It is important to remember to lift the presser foot and move the zipper pull as needed to sew a straight line.

When both sides are sewn down, topstitch to close the zipper opening.

Since this is like creating a box, it is important to have your foam for the cushions out where you can measure to check against it at each step.  This will keep you from making mistakes like I did on the first one.  It is must easier to adjust one step rather that undoing everything and starting over!

After each step, I would lay my fabric along with foam cushion to ensure a good fit. 

I put together all of the side pieces making one connected piece on all four sides.  Right sides should face when doing this step.  Once each piece is seamed together forming the one large pieces, pin to the top layer.   Finally, add the bottom layer.

After stitching all the way around, I ended up with one large fabric box and inserted the cushion.

This was a great project.  I now have all of my cushions redone.  I did it over a weekend.  It was a lot of work, but so worth it!

One thing that has made this project a lot easier, is my machine.  It isn't fancy, but it is a Singer that heavy duty enough to do a lot of big projects.  I have used this machine for everything on this project, but I have also used this for the curtains in my house as well as clothes and more.  If you are looking for a new machine, this has been a really great one!  It is almost 10 years old and works just like it did when I got it!

When I totalled up this entire part of the project, I spent around $70.  This included thread, fabric, piping and the zippers.  It was certainly much cheaper to do this project than the curtains.  If I reduced this amount by the amount of fabric that I had remaining to make accent pillows, curtain tie backs and some decorator towels, I would say that total is closer to $55.  Depending on the cost of fabric, recovering cushions is not that expensive.  And the best part about these cushions to me is that they can easily be removed and washed when needed!  



  1. you need to take that tree down, woman!

  2. I can't!! I'm too busy working on this pop up camper! :-)


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