Woohoo, one thing ticked off my list!  After at least 8 months of procrastination, during which time my old ironing board cover looked worse and worse, until I was beginning to forget the original colour, I finally got round to it.  This is one of those things that I knew wouldn’t take long, but it’s hardly exciting or sexy is it?

I had the fabric bought from Ikea specifically for this purpose, fun, but not so good that I wouldn’t ever want to ruin it, because, let’s face it, ironing board covers are destined to get stained and manky eventually.  I got some more foam from my local foam shop, since the original layer was very thin and a bit pathetic, and decided to layer the whole lot up on top of what was already there.  Lazy?  Me?  Never…

In the end it took less than the length of a Graham Norton show to finish, it was that quick!  So here’s how you can redo your ironing board, excusing the really ‘technical’ measurements…:

You will need:

  • Home decor weight fabric that can stand high iron temps (it nothing printed on that would react at high temps)  this should be at least 3″ bigger than your board on all sides
  • Thin foam suitable for ironing boards
  • Fabric scissors
  • Frixxion pen
  • Ruler/measuring tape
  • Twill tape about 1″ wide long enough to go all the way round your board with a bit to spare
  • Thin cord long enough to go all the way round your board with a bit to spare
  • Sewing machine with matching thread

To make the cover:

  1. Place your foam down onto your floor, or cutting surface if that happens to be bigger than your ironing board top (I had to go the floor route)
  2. Place the board face down on top of the foam, then cut all the way round it flush to the top.
  3. Place your fabric face down onto the floor, and the board on top of that again, leaving at least 3″ all the way round
  4. Take your pen and ruler and draw half way round the board 3″ out, from the centre of the tip of the board to the centre at the blun end.  For the curves just freehand it a bit, it doesn’t need to be precise.
  5. Fold your fabric in half right sides together along the halfway line, then cut out your cover top following your pen line.
  6. Now take your twill tape (note it needs to be woven to be able to bend with the curves easily) and pin it right sides together with your cover, with the edges matching, leaving a 1″ gap at the blunt end of the board.  I folded over the ends about half and inch to stop them fraying too – not that at this step you should fold the end so you can still see it rather than tucked inside.
  7. Using a zig-zag stitch, sew all the way round the edge of the cover so that you have a nice neat edge.  You could probably also do this on an overlocker but I couldn’t be bothered to drag mine out thought I should work this out for those of you with just a regular machine.
  8. Now fold the tape over to the inside and press in place, then pin down and zig-zag stitch all the way round the inside edge of the tape so that you create a channel for the cord to run through.
  9. Use a safety pin or threader thingummy jig (which I have) and thread the cord all the way through the channel, making sure that at this stage it’s nice and loose.
  10. Place your foam on top of your board, then put the cover on top and pull the cord tight, tying a bow when it’s nice and taught (because you want to be able to remove this again, potentially to wash it, don’t tie a knot!)
That’s it!
Now in a manner of full disclosure I should say, see the nice trees on my board in the photo at the top?  Yeah, I don’t actually use the board this way round, because of where the socket for the iron is, I have to use it the other way round, so the Expedit shelves will get to appreciate the trees as trees, and I’ll get to appreciate them as surrealist art…

Finish #1 from both the January and Q1 finish-alongs!