Friday, July 27, 2012

How to make an ironing board cover

For a while I've been living with this REALLY nasty ironing board cover. It was so bad that I would not expose you to a photo...too embarrassing. Like mending, these tedious things sort of pile up on me because I don't really like doing them. Today I finally made a new cover, and it wasn't so bad. In fact, it was pretty easy, painless, and REALLY cost effective. My pad is still in perfect shape, but if yours is worn out, replace it with 100% cotton batting, at least 2 layers. It can be pieced also. Use cotton thread and a mending stitch. Here is a link to how to do it:

I found a scrap of cotton fabric that had the look that said "I belong on an ironing board!" It wasn't quite long enough, so I pieced it at the end, turning the grain.You can see the seam at the right hand arrow.

Lay the rectangular fabric on the board. Trim the fabric leaving about 3" of  hang all the way around. It doesn't have to be perfect, so don't stress over this. I wasn't very careful, and you can see by the left side arrow that I left too much hang on that side. This will be a slight difficulty for me when it comes time to tighten the cover, but nothing impossible to deal with.

Next, sew a casing all the way around. I always do this by pressing under 5/8" from the raw edge and then press under again 1/4" inside the seam allowance. Top stitch close to the inside fold all the way around. You'll have to overlap fabric in tiny tucks around the curves. If you want it to look beautiful, do a basting stitch at the 1/4" fold and pull the thread to gather the fabric in before you stitch it down. For me, I don't care. This job doesn't have to look too pretty, it just needs to get done. Leave a 1/2" opening in the stitching somewhere.
My drawstring is going to be some nylon string that I have in my junk drawer. I need to thread this string through the casing all the way around the cover. A bodkin is a fancy tool invented to do this job, but as you can see, I've never used mine. I prefer a safety pin. I put a knot in the end of the string and then put the pin through the knot. I push the safety pin which leads the string, pulling it through the casing.

Lay the cover back on the board and pull the string until the cover is tight. Tie a knot or a double bow.

My cover is clean, white, lovely, and finished.Yay! I accomplished it. I should go do some ironing now...


  1. So glad you posted about this! I need a new cover for a very large ironing board with a slightly different shape--impossible to buy. I'll definitely use your information. Thanks!

  2. Thanks. My 54 year-old Maid of Honor (Sears) board has a slider to change the shape from a rectangle to a point. I can't find a pad or cover to fit it. Some will make a custom fitted one for $55. I am going to start right now making my own. Thanks to you. Roca.

  3. Thanks so much for your tutorial on ironing board padding and cover. I am inspired and encouraged. Marie

  4. Thank you for this. I bought a wonderful board with a horrible cover and was looking for a way to make it work.


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