How to make fitted picnic table and bench covers

How to make fitted picnic table and bench covers

You decide to go on a nice picnic with your family.

You find just the perfect spot with the perfect view. Then, to your horror, you spot the available picnic tables. They’re covered in leaves, bird droppings, and worse. Don’t flee the scene. Whip out your picnic table and bench covers and your picnic will go on as planned. The ensemble is perfect for your own table and benches at home, too.

Flannel-backed, plastic-coated fabrics are great for the project but you can also use vinyl, cotton, linen, and many other cloths. Don’t choose delicate fabrics like satin or too-thick materials like corduroy or denim. Vinyl or something plastic-coated is the best choice. You’ll need about five yards of the cloth. Launder the fabric before starting the project.

Measure the table length and add five inches to the measurement. Measure the width of the table and add five inches to it as well. Cut one piece of cloth to these specifications. If you don’t have a picnic table measure the length at six feet and add the five inches for hemming. Measure the width at three feet and add five more inches for hemming. Measure the benches and add the same five inches on each piece. If you are using general measurements cut the pieces six, adding the extra five inches. Measure the benches at six feet and five inches by 18 inches. Cut out all pieces.

To keep the tablecloth from blowing away during picnics you’ll have to sew in some elastic. Choose quarter inch or half inch elastic. Lay the elastic on the edge of the cloth but not at a corner. Flip the elastic over, cloth and all. Stitch around the perimeter, gently pulling the elastic as you go. If you’re a beginner at sewing pin the elastic into place. If not, continue laying the elastic at the edge, flipping it over and proceeding with the hem. When you get to the end stitch the elastic right up next to where you began then backstitch and trim.

Follow the same guidelines for the bench seat covers. Place the elastic next to the edge and flip it over. Stitch around the perimeter, pulling the elastic slightly as you go along. Backstitch and trim.

Instead of a cover for a traditional picnic bench you can also make one for a round table. Simply cut out the circle but add three inches all the way around. It’s a little harder to sew the circular hem than the straight one so if you find it necessary you can put in the hem then add the elastic. To do this turn under a half-inch then an inch more. Stitch all the way around. Just before you stitch the very last couple of inches, stop and backstitch.

Now fasten a safety pin on the end of a piece of elastic. Push the pin through the hem, pulling the elastic in as you go along. When you get the elastic in one end and out the other, pin the ends together and stitch into place. Finish the last few stitches of the hem and you’re done. Enjoy your table and bench covers at your next picnic.

Now fasten
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