Introduction: Leather Cushion
Hello, Jesper here again with another leather project!
After we put up new wallpaper in our apartment I wanted to do over our hallway sitting furniture. I love this piece of furniture. It's perfect to sit on and tie your shoes, and store gloves and stuff under the cushion and in the boxes.
I painted the furniture white and my girlfriend painted two more layers. I then got to work on the cushion.
English isn't my first language, so I apologize if there's any incorrect grammar or spelling.
PS I have left lots of notes on the pictures.
Step 1: Tools, Materials and Ideas
I took a picture of the tools I used in this project. What isn't show in the picture is a rag and two different sponges used for dyeing.
An acquaintance was getting rid of his leather sofa and two chairs. I stripped the sofa and one of the chais for leather. I also used bits from a leather cushion i got from my aunt.
I scrapped down ideas for design and measurements in a notepad.
Step 2: Measurement
Time to remove the old fabric and measure it.
I measured the lenght and widht of the piece and then divided the lenght by 4 and width by 3 (in order with my desing). By doing that I got the length of the diagonal of the squares I was going to use. I drew the diagonal on squared paper and cut out the pieces of paper and added 0.5 cm on all sides for seam allowance. For the design I used 3 different templates: squares, triangles along the edges and the pac-man pieces for the corners.
Step 3: Dyeing
Here are pictures of some of the pieces I ended up using.
First of all I cleaned the leather with leather shampoo, because it had been used.
After I had wiped it with a rag I dyed it with brown dye (narvsvärta). I hadn't dyed big pieces like this before, so thats why the brown/red-ish pieces has some spots on it and look weird on the middle one to the left.
I used a rag to dye the upper two pieces to get a bit more colour difference between the pieces.
The bottom pieces I used a sponge. It soaked up quite a bit of dye though, so I recomend you use some kind that doesn't soak up as much.
To make the pieces a little shinier I used leather oil.
I also dyed the pieces from the sofa just a little bit to fill in cat scratch marks and make it a bit darker.
Use gloves if you don't want colour on your hands, and make sure to protect your table if you don't want spots on it. I laid a garbage bag on my table to protect it from the dye.
Step 4: Cutting
I used scotch tape to attach the template on the back of the leather. I then used a cutting ruler and a roller knife. Finally I laid out all pieces to see that I got all pieces needed. Use a cutting board so you don't damage your table!
Step 5: Punching Holes
If you want, you can glue together two pieces and punch holes to make sewing easier. Myself, because I was afraid the glue might come through the seams, chose to not glue. (I have seen some use the word cement, it's the same thing, right??). The downsides of not gluing the pieces together is that even though the holes are even thanks to the rotary punch, some of the holes might not align properly. It didn't bother my that much to be honest.
I used a piece of 0.5 cm wide paper for a while to get a feel of the seam allowance. After a while I just used eye measure.
Step 6: Sewing
By far the most time consuming part of the project. Sewing. If you have a sewing machine, good for you, but I prefer to do it by hand :)
Sew the pieces front to front so the seam goes on the side that won't be shown on the final product. I used a vice (with two planks to get it a bit higher up) for a while, but prefered to just sew the pieces in my lap.
The sewing technique I always use is saddle stitching. Two needles are used and are basically crossing eachother through every hole. Here is a Instructables guide on the technique: How-to-saddle-stitch-leather
After every side (and when changing thread) I put the needles through a loop and did a double knot.
Step 7: Still Sewing
Sewing by hand takes a lot of time, so watch tv, listen to a audio book or just chill. It's quite meditateing to be honest.
Step 8: Attaching the Piece to the Cushion.
The sewing is now finished! Just the corners left. I fit the piece to the cushion, stretched it out and used a staple gun to attach it. A hammer was used since the staples didn't go all the way down.
Step 9: Finished!
I hope you enjoyed my work!