I got to looking at my ironing board cover the other day... and boy... was it boring and dirty. For something I use so often and is always present in my sewing room I decided I needed to change this dire situation. So I took to the floor (literally it's a big thing and I had to cut on the floor) to work out how to make a new one and it was surprisingly successful! I wanted to give you all a quick and dirty DIY on what I did so you can upgrade too!!
First- Not every ironing board is the same so you'll cater this specifically to yours. You'll need woven fabric and either string or small elastic ( I used 3/8"). I did both methods and each had it's own benefit I feel which I'll explain later.
Now onto the good stuff! You can either pattern directly off of your ironing board, or you can pattern off your old cover. I tried both options and using the old cover was definitely easier. If patterning off your actual board, make sure you cut enough width that it can wrap around and under your board. I lacked fabric on my first version so I did some color blocking. Honestly- I don't recommend this, because now I have a seam on my board that can get in the way while ironing. So spring for the extra fabric so you have a big enough cut for your whole board.
Once you've cut out your cover you'll need to decide on whether you want to finish it with elastic or string. There is pro's and cons to both. I feel like I got a more precise fit with string but it also took longer and was a little more difficult. Elastic was super fast but making sure you make it tight enough and are gathering in the right spots is difficult.
If you decide to use string. I recommend finishing your edge first with a serger and then you'll use a wide and short zig zag stitch and stitch directly over a string taking care not to catch it in your stitch. Keep a longish tail and start on a side of your cover and stitch the string to your cover all the way around until you get to the other side and leave another long tail out. I recommend stitching it to the right side of the fabric for a better fit (I did it on the wrong side and it's not quite as clean). Once you've stitched all the way around, place your cover on top of your ironing bored and start pulling the strings tight. You'll need to work the excess fabric around the ironing board a bit. Once you get it all even and tight so it's pulling under your ironing board you can tie off your string or use an adjuster to keep it tight but still allow for easy removal and washing. Tadah! You are done. Not hard at all am I right?? *
Now for the elastic method. This one is a little trickier. I made my elastic about 2/3 the size of the circumference my ironing board and sewed the edges together so you have one big circle. Next, mark on your cover the places that you'll need to gather like top curve and the bottom two curves. I then quartered my elastic and my cover and lined up and pinned the quarters. Then I just serged the elastic directly on to the cover stretching the elastic more at the parts previously marked for gathering and less on the straight edges. It's nice because it automatically finishes your woven as well. You are done! Easy to take on and off.
I hope this helps some of you who want to change up their covers and add a little bit more fun to ironing! Don't forget to snag all the woven in the pre-order happening now!!
Happy Ironing and Rocking,