I know that I have been promising you pictures of the cushions for the last couple of months and I finally finished the last one yesterday. I have been having a quiet weekend sorting things out and finishing up all my projects so I can finally share them. I thought it would be useful to do a little tutorial as well for the VW van. There are lots of pictures of these cushions available but I couldn’t find a ‘how to tutorial’, so thought I would share one here.
I drew my own template using the pictures I found for inspiration. My cushion cover is 14 by 14 inches so my backing fabric started at 16 by 16 then I trimmed it down. I drew the whole van and then used tracing paper for each individual part of the van. Then comes the fun part of choosing all of the fabrics!
I chose to use double sided interfacing to stick down the pieces onto the backing fabric. You could just sew them straight on but as I wanted to machine zig zag round the edges of some pieces and hand stitch on others it makes it more stable.
I did the ziz zags first, then the hand stitching and embellishments. The hand embroidery is all chain stitch. I have used a lot of different things from stash for these cushions, the cute little flowers come from the haberdashers here and I have them in different sizes and colours. The other laces and ric rac I have just picked up over the years, some of it is from The Range in the UK which always has great lace.
Once it is embellished it is time to make the back of the cushion. I always make envelope backs as they are the easiest method. The backing fabric is from Rose and Hubble, they have now stopped making it but you can still find plenty on Ebay. It comes in about 6 colours.
You need to cut the piece longer then the cushion by about 6 inches the give a generous overlap. I then seam both edges and then stitch the overlap together before stitching back and front of the cushion together. All cushion backs were made the same way.
For the second cushion I used some hexagons that I had in stash and just sewed them very carefully on to the backing fabric. This fabric was actually a cushion cover bought in the local Merca China homewares store. It seems a little illogical to buy a cushion cover then cut it up but it was the easiest and cheapest way of getting fabric.
The final cushion was a caravan pattern. This ended up being only a 12 by 12 inch one as I melted a bit of the fabric as the iron was too hot.. oops!
I have made smaller versions of a similar one from a free pattern by Flamingo Toes as embroidered hangings but this was a free pattern for a pot holder from Sewing4free. I combined elements of the two designs they had, and used the same tracing paper and applique technique as before. The only difference was the machine zig zag was done as the final step before making up the cushion.
I am so pleased with them and can’t wait to sort out the van when I get back. I also have bunting and fairly lights and a pretty throw that will double up as an awning/sunshade over the back doors. I have been looking at drive away awnings but they are really expensive and as I will have my tent with me for this year am going to wait and think about whether I really need one.
I will be back soon with a post about the new Steampunk outfit, am very pleased that everything is finished and I still have a week to go! Felling very organised 😉
I hope that you are having a nice weekend, have fun, take care, stay safe and thanks for visiting.
2 thoughts on “The campervan cushions…at last!”
That’s a lovely clear description, and of course, can be extended to subjects other than VW camper vans!
Be warned, by the way – campervans winkle their way into your soul! Years after they’d stopped going off in their van, my parents in law still perked up and paid attention every time they saw one on the road…!
Oh I am already addicted I’m afraid. The last few years of staying in my sister’s van and watching lots of van life travel vlogs have got me hooked. I am so excited every time I see one on the road and when camping spend a lot of time wandering round looking at other people’s van. Am looking forward to going to some vanlife festivals and meet ups in the future so I can get a good look inside some. The show at the NEC was fun but they were all expensive and very bland. I want to see the quirky home converted ones.