A cushy number

I scored another bargain on Black Friday.

I purchased approximately $75 worth of fabric and notions, and I paid… $15. Lots of smugness, of course, but it always pays to have a serious rootle in the remnants and offcuts bin at Spotlight. One of my bargains was a pair of 20 inch cushion panels in a pretty pale grey and yellow colour scheme by designer Jocelyn Proust.

I have a deep hatred of inserting zippers on cushion side seams. It’s unnecessarily tricky and can end up looking lumpy. The zippers always seem to eat the surrounding fabric, the cushion pad, the lining, etc. So I’ve got into the habit of putting the zipper on the back, normally covered by a tidy flap. But this was a pre-printed panel, with no spare fabric to make a flap. I had to improvise.

I bound the edges of a slit across the width with a toning grey shot fabric, and covered the ends of a matching grey zipper to get rid of the bulky ends and stopper.

I inserted the zipper, overlocked the binding/facing, opened the zipper a little and sandwiched the front and back panels together. All the internal seams were overlocked; normally I line my cushion covers and bind the outside edge to finish, but having used up most of my ‘spare’ fabric to create a scrappy back for the DfG quilt, I didn’t any left in a suitable size!

The finished effect is neat and tidy, I don’t mind the bound edges round the zipper, and this will make another respectable prize in the fun-raising raffle for Days for Girls early next year.

And now to play with my next fabric score. Watch this space!

32 thoughts on “A cushy number

  1. tialys says:

    Cockatoo fabric – surely a ‘must have’ at any price and even better at a bargain price.

    • katechiconi says:

      This particular image is of cockatiels, smaller and much less noisy. They make rather good pets if that’s your thing… But yes, a must have. I also have two more panels I’m keeping for myself, featuring cockatoos, but on a dark background. Gorgeous!

  2. Such pretty designs, I love them. And especially love that they were such a bargain — shot!

    • katechiconi says:

      Pretty *and* a bargain is so much better, isn’t it? I have quite the bargain stack to work my way though, including 3 metres of linen, and about 5 metres of two different patterns of lawn, some poplin, and some knit which I’m not entirely sure about, but will see how it turns out.

  3. Lovely fabric and a clever solution for the zip. I must admit to avoiding zips where possible because it is so easy to end up with them not quite right.

    • katechiconi says:

      This particular process does, I find, reduce the incidence of wonkiness. Normally, I wouldn’t have the additional binding/facing, but in this case it actually helped to keep the zip insertion straight. If I do the ‘pillowcase’ style back, where two panels overlap, I always make the overlap much bigger than usual as I hate seeing them bulging due to skimpiness.

  4. Marty K says:

    I’m most impressed by both your knack for finding a bargain in delightful fabrics and your skill with zippers! Well done! 🙂

    • katechiconi says:

      Oh, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet! I have a dress in progress in linen, a load of lawn, some poplin, another pair of cushion panels which will need the same zipper treatment… well, you get the idea. You have to take advantage of reductions where you see them!

  5. nanacathy2 says:

    Oh my days what lovely fabric.

    • katechiconi says:

      Yellow’s not really my colour, which is why I’m donating this one, but I thought the design was adorable. I have another pair of panels in colours which are much more my cup of tea, but equally gorgeous.

  6. Genius trick – and add me to the list of envying blog friends…

  7. Dayphoto says:

    Me too! Envying blog friend here!

  8. Nothing sweeter than a bargain… and I love scrounging around remnants bins at spotlight 🤩
    Love the fabric and as always your taste is impeccable 😍

    • katechiconi says:

      The trick is not to allow yourself to buy anything too small to be useful. Lawn has to be big enough to make hankies. Poplin has to be large enough to make napkins, linen large enough to make something wearable, and so on. No point in buying 20cm of linen in a bold print. What can you do with it, really? Unless you have a perfect use already in mind, of course!

      • This is where experience comes into it. For me if I like the look of something I buy … knowing I want to use it but now need to learn how to put things in their place. I’ve always had something to do with sewing and embroidery and now quilting as it’s literally part of my genetic makeup I think… but I’ve never really had any formal training here in Australia… learning in India is very very different but as long as I have sewing and fabric in my life I know I will learn as the years progress and my heart remains fulfilled 💝

  9. anne54 says:

    Great bargains, Kate, because of course a bargain is only a bargain if you get something like these beautiful fabrics for a knockdown price.

  10. magpiesue says:

    I love a good bargain, and those cockatiels would make me love it even more! Can’t wait to see what else you scored. 😉

  11. cedar51 says:

    excellent bargain, and excellent fabric for a delightful cushion

    I so wanted to uptake some Black Friday sales but things on the health front, kept me grounded. I remember last year, I went to the sewing machine store and bought a new machine – on the same day, but it was already on sale and it just happened to be the day to be in the store…

    Mostly spend time sewing paper and did a little today….but I love having the new modern machine that works like a dream…

    • katechiconi says:

      Oh, I do envy you a new machine! I had been eyeing a quilting machine with a wide throat in the store for nearly 50% off, but at $600 I couldn’t see spending that much on myself, even before we had to replace the car. My current machine works OK, I’m used to its idiosyncrasies, but I’d have loved more space to work in. I think probably economics have saved me from myself. As it is, $15 is an excellent price to pay for everything I brought home 🙂

  12. tinaor says:

    Beautiful fabric. Good luck with the zips. I’m not particularly keen on side zip inserting either – been known to put the zips on the back, not mid back, usually slightly to one end. Never known anyone to find them uncomfortable to lean on or indeed to comment that they don’t look right! I say, make things the way you are comfortable to make them.

  13. I really love the fabric. I never expected to like that combination but I’m drawn to it more and more. I hate zippers too. I can do them but would avoid them if at all possible. You are so good at figuring a way around things. Used your instructions for WP again today. Thanks.

    • katechiconi says:

      I love it too, but it doesn’t really ‘go’ with anything else I have, since yellow is not a favourite colour of mine. The next one I make is *definitely* a keeper, though!

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