How Make Your Own Patio Cushions

By following these basic steps of how to make patio chair cushions, you can save yourself money and can add interest to your backyard and garden décor since your fabric choices are much less limited than standard cushion choices.  Do-it-yourself or DIY patio chair cushions allow you to have custom cushions without the custom price.

So, if you can sew, these directions will show you how to make patio chair cushions in just a few easy steps so you can have your own custom patio chair cushions at a fraction of the price of what it would cost for someone else to make them for you.


Editor: This is the “simplest” guide. there are much more creative ideas out there, I have linked to a few at the end of the post.

  • First measure the area for your patio chair so you know how much foam and fabric to purchase.  You should do this by taking separate measurements of the seat area, as well as the back of the furniture if your cushions will be used up the back of the chair.  Measure width by length to get appropriate measurements.  Keep in mind how thick the foam you will be using will be because that will affect how wide the resulting cushion is and how much fabric you need.  If you have an old cushion, then the measuring process is simplified because you can use the measurements of the old patio chair cushion.
  • Select the fabric you want to use and the thickness of the foam.  The thicker the cushion foam, the more comfortable it will be, but if the cushion has to bend around any areas it will be harder to do if it’s too thick.  Thick seat cushions also take longer to dry than thinner ones.  It is important to select fabric that is durable and fast drying and foam that will not retain moisture and will hold up to constant sitting, or your cushions will flatten or get mildew or moldy and you’ll have to replace them again soon.  You also need to purchase a zipper for each cushion that is just slightly shorter than the length of your cushion (about 2 inches or so).
  • Once you have all of you materials, you need to measure and cut your fabric.  Lay your fabric out along the foam (assuming the foam has already been cut to fit in the store or otherwise cut your foam to size first) and add ½ – 1” of clearance for the seams on each side.  Make sure to take into account the thickness of the sides of the foam.
  • After the material has been measured and cut, the two sides for the front and back of the cushion need to be sewn together inside out on three sides, leaving a seam allowance of ½ – 1” all the way around, just like you would sew a pillow.  On the fourth side, the zipper should be sewn in to complete the cushions. They benefit from double stitching the seams for added durability, since they take a lot of wear and tear.
  • Turn the fabric right-side out and stuff the foam into the cover.  You may need to use a long pointy object, like a knitting needle, to make sure the corners of the covers are properly pushed all the way out so the foam can go all the way to the edge.  In the corners, you may also need to cut some of the seam allowance so you get crisp, clean edges on the corners.  Then zip up the open side.
  • If you are making high back patio chair cushions or lounge chair cushions, you may need to sew tiebacks onto the edges so they can be tied to the furniture.  This will prevent sagging.  Tiebacks can be sewn onto any type of cushion for added stability and to prevent them from blowing in the wind.

Enjoy your cushions!   Because these cushions are made with zippered openings, you can easily remove the fabric whenever needed to clean them or to replace them with other fabric without having to replace the foam.