Project: Fabulous footstool cover
These busy barkcloth prints were all the rage in the 1950's, with fanciful geometric shapes and intriguing color combinations.
You will need
Basic sewing supplies
Lightweight tracing paper
Barkcloth drapes or yardage
3 buttons, in a matching color
Layout and construction
1 To make a cover for a round footstool, begin by measuring the diameter and make a custom pattern piece for the top, adding a 1/2 inch seam allowance.
2 To determine the size of the skirt, measure the height of the footstool and add an additional 1 1/2 inch hem. To calculate the width needed for the Skirt, begin with the circumference of the stool and add 12 inches for each pleat. Factor in a 1/2 inch seam allowance. I designed this cover to have three pleats, so I added 36 inches to the circumference. (For example, in this project, the height of the stool was 17 inches, so I added the extra 1 1/2 inches to have a total length of 18 1/2 inches. The circumference of the stool was 56 inches; I added 36 inches for the three pleats and I added 1 inch for the seam allowances to yield a width of 93 inches.)
3 Use the custom pattern piece from step 1 and the measurements from step 2 to cut your fabric. You may have to cut seperate pieces and sew them together to reach the desired width for your skirt - if you're piecing the fabric together, remember to add a 1/2 inch seam allowance for each seam you need.
4 Use a water-soluble marker to mark where you want the pleats to fall, spacing them evenly around the footstool. Pin the skirt to the top, right sides together, making the inverted pleats as you go by folding the fabric over on itself to a depth of 3 inches on both sides of the mark, the folds meeting on the mark. (Each side of the pleat uses 6 inches of fabric.) Stitch the skirt to the top in a 1/2 inch seam.
5 Make a 1 inch machine hem. Sew a button on each pleat, 5 inches from the top.
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Excerpted from Sewing with Fabulous Vintage Fabrics by Arden Franklin. Copyright 2004 by Lark Books. Excerpted with permission by Lark Books. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.