How to Cover Boxed Porch Cushions

A couple of months back, I talked with you about Yellow, My New Neutral because I had just completed covering our porch cushions in Sunflower yellow.  Later that month, I published the 3-Step DIY for Covering Outdoor Cushions, which was the tutorial for covering the front porch rocker and chair cushions.

Covering Porch Cushions

3-Step DIY – Covering Outdoor Cushions

That was all well and good, but I skipped the tutorial for covering the boxed cushions on the back porch glider.

New Glider Cushions

And, for a lot of people, that may be the hardest ones to cover.  I do apologize for making you wait so long!

Boxed Porch Cushions DIY

The first step is to remove the old covers.

Removing Old Cusion Covers

I was shocked to see how easily the threads pulled out!  I can’t imagine the old covers would have lasted more than a year if Sir Winston had not chewed the corners out while they were brand new.  Yes, brand new!  (I’m still amazed I didn’t run that stinker off!)

And, shocker…the old cording was foam!  It snapped in two when pulled from the ends.

Foam Cording

I used a stiff rope cord for my new covered cording.

For the back cushions, place the pieces of the old cover over your new fabric and use them as patterns.


Remember how I nearly ruined my iron when this  old cushion fabric melted onto it?  You can see above that the pieces were left bent at the seams.

Luckily, I was able to DIY the Easy Iron Cleaning 101.   (Can you hear my sigh of relief? Rowenta irons aren’t cheap to replace!)

This is how the back cushion pieces should look after cutting out.

Back Cushion Cut-Outs

Fold the cut edges together like this, with right sides together…

Stitching Corners

and stitch.

Stitching Corners

Boom.  You’ve just made a corner.

Stitching Corners

Stitch all four corners, and you have this.

Stitching Corners

Repeat for the other cushion side.  You should have two sides for each cushion.

If you want to include cording around the seam of your cushion, follow my tutorial for How to Cover Cording for Home Decor.

Stitch your covered cording around side one.  See the 3-Step DIY – Covering Outdoor Cushions for connecting your beginning and ending of the cording.  If you’re not adding cording, skip to the next step.

Stitching Corners

To attach the other cushion side, align the corners together.

Aligning Corner

Pin right sides together and stitch around the cushion cover, leaving an opening to insert the filler.

Completed Corner

Since I used my former filler, it was easy to fit inside.

Filling Cushion

Fold the open edge (which I arranged to be a selvage) to the inside at 1/2 inch and pin.

Pinned Closure

I was hoping to fit this under my machine and stitch in the ditch, but it was too fat.  So, I enjoyed hand-stitching the closures that night while watching TV with HH.  🙂  (See my tutorial to Pro-Sew Your Pillow Closures.)

Back cushions complete.  Now for the boxed seat cushion.

Back Cushions Complete

Do the same pattern trick with the old cushion cover pieces – or just do a quick length and width measurement of one side and the rise of the box for your riser strip.  Stitch the cording around the edge of both side pieces.

Fabric Cuts

To assemble the box, stitch the riser strip around one side.  I find it easier to begin and end in a corner.  Leave a short section un-stitched so you can have room to maneuver a seam to bind the riser ends together.

Assembling Box

Here’s a better view maybe.  My advice.  Don’t trim the loose ends just yet…might need adjustment when you attach the other side of the box.

Assembling Box

Before assembly, I’d already stitched two strips together.  That’s the seam you see on the side of the box below.  (Also run a finishing stitch around all the edges before assembly.)

Assembling Box

Align your box corners as closely as you can – right sides together.

Assembling Box

Pin around the square to hold everything in place.

Assembling Box

Stitch around the box, leaving one long edge open for stuffing.  (Now you can trim the riser ends.)

Add ties to two corners – also covered in my 3-Step DIY post.  (My cushion ties at the back corners of the cushion.)

Assembling Box

Carefully insert your cushion filler, smoothing out all the filler lumps in corners, etc.  Pin the closure and spend another night in front of the TV while you Pro-Sew Your Pillow Closure.

Preparing Box

My filler was pretty tight, but I’m so glad I didn’t add any extra for easier filling.  Over time, the cushion filler settled in and needed that extra snug fit.

Beach-Themed Pillows

One rainy day, Winston found his way to the glider for a nap – with muddy feet.  (Hey, give it time…training is a process!)

I got the water hose and rinsed the mud off with the jet spray.  It dried like a dream.  I love Sunbrella outdoor fabric!  🙂

So…how about your cushion project?  Are you motivated now that you see how simple the process really is?




  1. Donna says

    Excellent tutorial! Pinned it for future use. The Chihuahuas, Riley and Jacob, have their own glider rocker and it needs new cushion covers. Use the same technique? xoxo

  2. teresa says

    Excellent tutorial. Unfortunately, I don’t have old ones to use as a pattern. 🙁 I better get cracking if I want these for Summer as I have at least four chairs to do.

    • says

      Thank you, Teresa. I think it should be a breeze for you to measure and cut out your new fabric – being as experienced as you are. Good luck getting your cushion project on your schedule!

    • says

      Thank you, Jenna. You’re so sweet. I’ve been trying to get over to visit you all day! Maybe tomorrow, although I’ll be gone from daybreak ’til dark. OK, Thursday?! I hope you’re having a great week!