Angela's Blog
A Bit About me

Welcome to my personal weblog! I have many areas of interest as a Christian wife and home schooling mother of 6 girls: writing, poetry, website design, digital photography, a home business (sewing); however, this blog will focus more on the wonderful journey the Lord has brought our family through and what the Lord has shown me in His Holy Word.

I know that my devotionals don't often speak of specifics in our lives, but I want my readers to know that what I write comes most often from what the Lord is doing in our lives, or has done. I don't just repeat words by this preacher or that one. My devotionals are often written through a haze of tears, sometimes in grief, sometimes in peace at God's goodness for what He is doing for our good. At other times, after a flood of tears over my lack of faith in His great plan for us, especially after I've seen Heaven's gates open in another miraculous answer to prayer. What I write is what God shows me through those trials which He brings because of His great goodness as He works out His perfect plan. - Angela.

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People's Baptist Church
Old Fashioned, KJB

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Slipcover instructions

This is for the previous post on Angela’s Wingback Chair Slipcover.

Thanks for the comments! I’m pretty happy about the results fo this project. It is not a “beginner’s project” for sure, and there was many a time I wondered what I had got myself into, but I was pleasantly surprised at the results.

Yes, it is a slipcover, and no it doesn’t really require a pattern. Each chair is different. A typical wingback chair requires 5 yards and an extra couple yards for the ottoman. I got 8 to be safe.

The two biggest keys to getting and keeping it in place are the zippers in the back, and the seat cushion.

The Beginning:

Cut peices that are slightly bigger than each section (lets say an extra 4″ wide and tall. The putting off and removal of the slipcover is made easier by two zippers running from the top down to the top of the skirt, and placed just inside the back corners.

Make sure you mark the matching points, especially on the bulb and the arm wrap, with the marker, as you will need to dissassemble and reassemble to put the piping it.

All of the following work will be done with the wrong side of the fabric facing out. As each section is sewn together (arm, etc) I do turn them right side out to check the fit, then flip them back wrong side out to continue working.Lay the peices on the chair with the wrong side facing out and tuck it into the various crevices. Pin the fabric to the chair to hold it in place make it easier.

Using a sewing dissapearing ink marker (or crayola washables), draw lines on the meeting fabrics where an appropriate stitchline should be. Wherever a crease is, it’s good if the fabric “tucks” in about a 1/2″ to an inch. This helps alleviate stress. From your drawn line, drawn another one a 1/2″ away. This will later become your cutline.

I don’t reccomend cutting the excess away yet as the actual fitting may need more tweeking than you anticipate.

The Wings:

For this chair, I did the wings first, and they were actually easy as the inner wing simply had to be pleated in four places to match up with the outer flat wing.

The Arms:

Each arm is done in 3 peices (the outer side, over the arm, and the small bulbous front. The peice the wraps over the arm pleats into the bulbous section.

Back Front and Deck:

Once I had those fitted and sewn as best as I could, I worked on the front of the back, the deck (seat area), and the bottom front. The are all flat peices and the easiest to deal with.

General Assembly:

Now to assemble the arms and back front, deck, and front edge. One of the biggest issues will be seam intersection. Often, you can just simply sew across a bunch of intersecting seams. You have to sew up to them, backstitch to secure, then restart you seam on the other side of the seams. This will keep all the seam allowances free and prevent puckering. If you end up with puckering near intersecting seams, just check for that.

A Glimpse of the Finished Product:

If you want to, now’s a good time to turn it all right side out and have a good look as it will look finished from the front. Check the fit and seam intersection for any issue and adjust the pattern. You WILL end up doing this a few times….LOL, but it is worth it!!!!

The Back:

Fitting the back is much easier if you lay the chair down on its front. I chose to put a zipper either side of the back, as I found it made it much easier to get on and off.

The Zipper:

A #4 coil zipper works well and isn’t too heavy or light. To insert the zipper, simply press over the 5/8″ seam allowance, and topstich in place. It will end at the bottom of the main body of the slipcover. You could also choose to do a lapped zipper to hide it better, but seams meeting at the zipper center might be less bulky. I may do a lapped seam on Lowell’s chair with the lap facing into the back, not the outside edges.

The Skirt:

With the almost finished skirt on the chair wrong side out, tucked in properly and the cusion in place, use a straight edge to draw a line parallel to the floor, a 1/2″ lower than where you want the skirt to sit. This is your line to place the piping and skirt. You could cut the section off below that line, but I find it helps the skir to hang right.

Skirt Piping:

Leaving about 1 1/2″ poking out, pin your piping in place matching your seam allowance with the drawnline you just cut. The seam allowance will be pointing down. The main piping runs from one back corner, around the side, across the front, and around the other side. The back skirt and piping is attached seperately from the rest of the skirt.

For the hems, I made 2 1/2″ hems on the bottom, and 1/2″ hems on the sides. The skirt will be in four sections that but against each other on each corner. To hide the legs, I added 8 to 10″ wide finished inset pieces (same hems as the rest of the skirt) under the main skirt and in each corner. That is viewed in the last picture.

I hope this challenges you to revive some of your old furniture that just needs a new cover!

Angela’s Wingback Chair Slipcover

What a big job, but I think it looks so good!!! I am so thrilled. Making a slipcover for this chair and ottoman were the pre-cursor to getting  a slipcover contract with a local company. This lady is so busy with dealing with customers and designing that she’s running herself ragged trying to get the sewing done.

So here’s my first attempt at a slipcover. I would have to pick what is apparently the hardest chair to do.

Wingback Chair Front

Chair front

Chair and Ottoman

Chair Front

Chair Back

Chair back

Skirt and Inset

Chair skirt and inset

I hope this challenges you to revive some of your old furniture that just needs a new cover!

Monday, March 17th, 2008

Yesterday was one busy day, but then again, they always seem to be. The TSA phone (Trenholm Sew-All) rang 8 times in one hour and I had 2 customers drop off pants to hem. It was nice to have some easy work. I was in the middle of a contract job for “radio bags” for a surveyor’s blue-tooth enabled peice of equipment. I had made ten for him before, and his business is picking up, so this time I am to make 30. So, for a break, I hemmed up the pants and called the very surprised and happy customers. It’s not often anymore that I can get the jobs done the same day they are dropped off.

I will be working on our business website in the next few weeks and I hope to add a section that will show some of the things I’ve done: From a boat cover, a stuffed frog hot water bottle case, slipcovers for furniture, and even repairs to a bunny suit….LOL

Lowell was getting more office work done, and then he went to a brace fitting for his left leg. He’s had this “new” brace for over 2 years, but we just couldn’t get our act together to work with the supplier, Okaped, to get the fit just right. He’d tried wearing it a few months ago, but the padding wasn’t right and it set his leg off. Then he fell and work (with the old brace on), cracked a chip off his foot and was off work for 3 weeks. His leg/foot was so swollen that there was no point bothering to try and fit the brace. Lowell wore it last night, and I only had to reset one strap when he came home. Short pieces of velcro just don’t hold, so I replaced it with an industrial snap. It is so much lighter and he loves it. The tricky part is just getting all the padding where it needs to be so as not to set his leg off. With all the work the Naturopath, Dr. Wagstaff, has been doing on Lowell, his leg rarely sets off for no particular reason. It is usually only when he’s anoyed it somehow. This has been a huge change over 2 years ago when it hurt him 24/7.

Abigail and Melissa schooled in the sewing room so I could watch them. Sarah usually schools Melissa, but she was inputting data in our accounting software. It’s going to be hard when Sarah goes to college as she is my backup computer “geek”. I usually do it all, but now Lowell is getting into the bookwork, so it really helps. He’s finding that some of the work he’s done at Kelowna Flightcraft all these years is proving to be a definite asset in organizing the business files. What a great blessing!

I was thankful to start day off with my personal Bible reading and prayer time. It certainly makes a big difference in the day. I was reading in the New Testament, John chapters 2-3. Probably some of my favorite chapters. The Lord really impressed on me the following:

John 2:13-16 And the Jews’ passover was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem, And found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting: And when he had made a scourge of small cords, he drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and poured out the changers’ money, and overthrew the tables; And said unto them that sold doves, Take these things hence; make not my Father’s house an house of merchandise.

I had to stop and think: Have I filled my heart and mind with the things of this world? Have I turned God’s temple into “an house of merchandise?” I know I have to function in this world, but is my focus “the Kingdom of God and His righteousness” (Matthew 6:33) or too often, does my focus become that which profits so little in God’s Kingdom? That was hard to think about, but I know how important that even that thought be before me.

Okay, back to my day:

I put in an order to put in to one of my suppliers. I only order from them a couple times a year so it can take me a couple hours to get it all setup and faxed. I gotta try to be more efficient on that.

Suzanne from Okanagan Slipcovers (new contract work) dropped more fabric for me to cut and serge. I should get that done tonight as long as my Pfaff serger behaves. It has given me such fits lately that I just wanted to pitch it out the window! I simply cannot trust it anymore. Oh well, looks like I’ll be getting a used industrial Juki serger in a few weeks. That will speed production time up about 5 times: from 1500 stitches per minute to 7000. Pretty nifty! I’m also looking at selling the Pfaff home server privately and buying a Juki home machine. Having reliable equipment is so important. Doesn’t have to be fancy, just reliable. Fancy only has more things that can break.

So I did get 7 of the radio bags done. He wanted 10 this week, but I ran out of fabric and won’t have any till next week, but Jason will be happy to get the 7 for now.

I also fixed that “bunny suit” for a full grown lady. I look forward to adding that to our business site. There’s a cute story behind it.Sarah is just finishing her grade 11 and is working on some grade 12 subjects too. She’s hoping to be done her high school this year, then work with me for the next year to save funds for Bible college next year. Little Carolyn goes between rooms seeing who will play with her for a few minutes, or make a puzzle, read a story, work on her “schooling” sheets. She’s working on her numbers and spelling her name. She loves “schooling” like her big sisters.All the girls’ piano is going very well. It’s amazing how the older girls each have their own style. Abigail isn’t at that point yet, but she really enjoys playing, especially for the family during family devotion time. She has a few hymns she can play, then the big girls improvise by ear whatever song is requested. Very fun! Carolyn’s favorite is “Away in a Manger.”

Sarah plays the autoharp as well. She had one given to her by a very sweet lady, Laura Olfert, who willed it to Sarah the week before she died, last year. Sarah was especially fond of Mrs. Olfert, so she gave it to her as an instrument she could easily carry around as a missionary in India. She was a very special lady and we miss her. I need to get a brass plate made with a dedication text on it. We still visit her husband, who is 96 and in a nursing home.

The twins are working on classical guitar. I’ve tried to work with the flute, but it sure isn’t easy! I would pick the hardest wind instrument to learn!

Okay, so that’s the main news for yesterday, and a little catch up too. Hopefully I’ll get today’s typed in today. LOL.