Friday, April 1, 2011

Fool-Proof Ironing Board Cover (Really!)

Does your ironing board cover look like

Are you ashamed to iron
your lovely new creations on your old, ugly,
stained, torn, ill-fitting,
and otherwise NASTY 
ironing board cover?

Well, help is on the way!


This is NOT an "Uber-Crafty, County-Fair-Blue-Ribbon-
Winning" Ironing Board Cover tutorial.

Not at all!

This is an
"ACK! I can't stand it anymore and 
I have less than an hour to kill and
I need to make something to assuage my
nasty ironing board guilt" 
Ironing Board Cover Tutorial!

Here is what you need:

1 5/8 yard of cotton fabric
1 5/8 yard of Insul-Bright 
4 1/2 yards Extra Wide Double Fold Bias Tape
(I used scraps, so they are not even matching!)
2 1/2 yards 1/4" elastic
2 safety pins
and of course your regular sewing pins, thread,
scissors and sewing machine.

Grab your ugly old cover and lay it on top
of your new fabric lengthwise.

Cut around the old cover. 
Mine was MUCH TOO SMALL and slipped
off my board constantly, causing 
extreme frustration.
So, I cut my new cover about 2 inches larger all around.

Starting at the flat end of the cover,
pin the bias tape all the way around the cover.
Just wrap the bias tape right over the raw edge.
Make sure your pins are going in the direction 
so you can pull them out as you sew,
rather than stabbing your fingers as I often do.

DO NOT OVERLAP the bias tape
here, as this is your opening for feeding
through your elastic.

Using a medium ZigZag,
stitch the bias tape onto the fabric,
with the left side of the stitch on the fabric
and the right side on the bias tape.

Using the zigzag insures that
you will not miss the underside of 
the bias tape if your stitch is too close to the edge.
Stitch past your starting point and back stitch a few times
to make sure it will hold tightly when you start
feeding the elastic through.

 Attach a safety pin on both ends of your
elastic and start feeding one end
through the opening in the
bias tape,
which is two different colors in my case!

Make sure you pin the end of the elastic to the 
fabric with the other safety pin. 
This way, as you are feeding the elastic through the 
bias tape casing, it will not pull all the way through, 
causing you to yell nonsensically and throw 
your project across the room.

Once you have fed the elastic through, 
and adjusted the gathers,
you will have 
a little pile of fabric that looks like this.

Once again, grab that nasty old
cover and now lay it on the Insul-Bright.
I kept mine folded and cut two layers
because I like my ironing board really padded.

I cut about 3/4 of an inch all the way around,
so it was smaller than my new cover,
but bigger than the joke of a cover I had been using.

Now, put your new padding on your ironing board,
and fit your lovely new cover on top!!!
Grab those elastic pieces and PULL!!!!

Knot them good and tuck then into the 
cover underneath the board.

Oh, such a relief!!!

And since I have no storage at all
in our new house, I keep my 
ironing board behind a chair, up against 
the wall, when I am not using it.
Doesn't it look so much nicer than
the nasty old one?

Now, grab your old cover,
wad it up and
throw it in the trash,
all the while singing
and dancing to some guilty pleasure
pop song.

And in case anyone was wondering,
yes, this is some of my beloved,
hoarded Mary Engelbreit fabric
that I have been petting and loving
since 2003. 
It makes me happy to see it,
so I may as well be happy when I am ironing.

So, not my usual perfectionist sewing, I know!
But I truly could not stand that old cover anymore.

You can do this too! 
No fooling!

Happy Sewing!


Carolyn said...


Thanks for this great tutorial. I need a new cover and like your old one, mine doesn't stay on well. Now I have to go through my stash and find something to use!!

Anonymous said...

Love this post. You made me smile. My ironing board cover also needs a serious make-over; but they are so expensive, now I can redo it. Thank you. I also laughed as you reminded me to make sure my pins are all going the right way; cause try as I might as least one thing gets pinned wrong when doing a big sewing project. And more than one project is aimed at the trash pile when the elastic comes all the way out. So glad to see I am not alone. Love your projects. My ironing board is currently set up right in front of the bedroom closet with a project started but time keeps getting away from me.

Stacy said...

Yes, as a matter of fact...mine does look A LOT like that LOL! I really need to do this, too. It has been on "the list". I need to get some Insul Bright, though. Hopefully my local fabric shop carries it. Thanks for the tutorial! :)

hollym. said...

I just love ya, Siv!! This is fabulous and really cute, too~ Thanks for the tutorial!

Bunny said...

Brilliant! I need to do this so bad. Only thing is I want to do with your fabulous fabric and nothing else!!!

Sewconsult said...

Great job. I hope you washed your fabric first. The red might be an issue when the hot iron meets the dye. I have a great June Tailor (grid) ironing board cover. I have to remind myself to wash it occasionally because it can get icky, but washing always makes it like new.

Anonymous said...

Babe, another genius lesson. So happy I am your mother and get to be so proud of you. You way way exceed my sewing skills. Love you

everythingsewing said...

Looks wonderful and I love the fabric. Thank you for the tutorial I really needed it.


Esther Grant said...

Awesome and pretty too!! Thanks for sharing. :)

Anonymous said...

Finally found some Insul-Bright, hoping to get my new brighter cover on this afternoon. However the new zoo habitat is calling our names and it is due to rain this afternoon. Zoo in the morning while the sun shines and sewing while it rains. Sounds like the makings of a wonderful day. Will share a picture of my new board with you.

Anonymous said...

Which side up do you put the insul-brite? I know one side reflects and the other one absorbs and I am not smart enough to figure this out.

Manikandan P said...

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Deepa said...

Hey there.. Thanks a ton from India! :) I had an ironboard with a torn cloth and I was trying to find how to purchase just the cloth and realized no on really sells just the cloth? May be cos the cloth doesn't get torn? :) well mine has and I was at my wits end on what to do when i stumbled on your cute blog! And yes, you've saved my day :) It's wonderful to know that all i need now is a fancy cotton cloth. Cos the insulation is intact and attached to the board. And yes, the elastic from the old cloth is intact too :) I just need to sew it up. Thanks again for this post and loved the humor too :)