The overcast Texas skies are not very conducive to good pictures, but I'm posting some pics anyway of the new chairpads for my breakfast table. If you recall, my initial plan was to use fabric and just recover the old cushions. That plan changed a little when I switched to using oilcloth - the old cushions were a little smaller than the seat, but since the cushion "squished" down when you sat on it, you couldn't tell. Oilcloth doesn't quite expand like cotton fabric, so it was obvious when you sat down that the cushion was too small...
Enter plan B.
I made a template of the seat out of some scrap flannel, and then added 1/4 inch around it as I traced it onto the oilcloth (for seam allowance). The straps were made from 1in x 11in strips folded in half and sewn with a straight stitch. I didn't bother with hemming since oilcloth doesn't fray.
Yes, you heard me right.
Oilcloth. Doesn't. Fray.
*giggle with glee!*
So, with wrong sides together and ties pinned in place, I sewed a straight stitch around three sides, leaving the back portion open for the cushion and reverse-stitched over the ties for extra reinforcement.
I attempted to be resourceful and reuse the old cushion stuffing, but it just made for a lumpy mess underneath my beautiful polka dot oilcloth, so I went with two foam inserts, trimmed to fit.
I then hand-stitched the back edge closed (realizing "Oh, that's why I need a thimble!") and added some covered buttons that I made from a kit I found at Hobby Lobby.
And ta-da! Can you imagine the giddiness I experienced the next morning as I wiped off spilled yogurt drink and grape jelly?!
Now... lessons learned from this experience, besides aforementioned need for a thimble...
1. Researching how to sew with fabric prior to sewing such fabric proves to be a great idea! I found all the info I needed from Oilcloth Addict, from whom I also purchased this fabric love!
2. Read your sewing machine manual! I never realized there were different needles for different types of fabric! For shame...
3. If at first you don't succeed... go with plan B (or plan C for that matter!)
4. Sewing for my home is amazingly self-gratifying, no matter how tedious the task.
5. I. love. oilcloth. This could be the beginning of a beautiful relationship!