How to Make a French Mattress Style Cushion

Item # X-HT-200650

Who doesn’t love a comfy seat? A great way to turn any bench, window seat, chair or floor into a soft place to sit is to add a French mattress style cushion. These plump, plush cushions feature a rolled edge and tall boxing reminiscent of a mattress. They make excellent floor pillows because the thick stuffing and tall profile of the cushion provide a lot of padding between you and the floor. These cushions are also easy to sew and have a finished look without adding piping. Let’s take a look at how to make a French mattress cushion.

DIY French Mattress Style Cushions. Great for floor pillows!

Mattress style cushions can vary in look depending on your application. Some cushions feature large rolls at the edges, some are tufted, some are very plump and some are a bit flatter. In our how-to video, we give patterning instructions for creating a plump, floor pillow stuffed with polyester fiberfill. We also make a flatter version with foam inside, which is better for bench cushions and patio seating. If you choose to use foam as your filling, wrapping the foam in batting will help you create a fuller look, while still not being as puffy as the fiberfill.

Sewing cushion boxing

It's so easy to sew straight seams thanks to the seam allowance markings on the Ultrafeed machine's needle plate.

These cushions sew together just like a typical box cushion with one exception — the rolled edge. After you assemble the cushion, turn it right side out and topstitch along the edges to create that piped look. A French mattress style cushion is a great way dress up a regular cushion and turn it into something stylish and elegant. The rolled, seamed edging gives the cushion a unique look, and it's much easier than sewing piping! We think this style of cushion would look stunning on a daybed, futon, bench seat, porch swing or even tucked into a cozy reading nook.

DIY French Mattress Style Cushions. Great for floor pillows!

Closeup of the beautiful rolled edge that gives these French mattress style cushions their unique look!

We chose Sunbrella® Upholstery Fabrics for our cushions, but you can use any home décor fabric that you choose. If your cushions are for the patio, use an outdoor home décor fabric or an indoor/outdoor performance fabric. Some of our favorite brands include Sunbrella Upholstery, Bella-Dura®, Waverly® Sun N Shade or P/Kaufmann Outdoor, among others.

In this video you will learn how to pattern your fabric, create boxing, sew the cushion together, add the final mattress style seam and fill the cushion. Watch the video below to get started making your own French mattress style cushion!

Video Chapters:

  • Patterning Decorative Fabric – 0:27 min.
  • Patterning Insert Fabric (fiberfill only) – 3:39 min.
  • Sewing Boxing & Plate – 4:46 min.
  • Attaching Final Plate – 7:16 min.
  • Sewing Mattress Style Seam – 9:07 min.
  • Assembling Cushion Insert (fiberfill only) – 12:01 min.
  • Adding Filling and Closing Cushion – 14:19 min.
  • Materials List – 17:50 min.

Materials List:

  • Home Décor Fabric (we used Sunbrella® Upholstery Fabric)
  • Spun Bonded Pillow Protector Fabric #104466
  • V-69 Polyester or Extra Strong Upholstery Thread
  • Polyester Fiberfill #104467
  • Cushion Wrap Silk Film #103933 (optional)

Tools List:

  • Soapstone Marking Pencil #102766
  • Sailrite® Edge Hotknife #103800
  • Sailrite® Ultrafeed® LSZ-1 PLUS Walking Foot Sewing Machine #300602
  • Straight edge
  • Marker
  • Scissors
  • Shop vacuum (optional)

How would you use a cushion like this? Share your thoughts and ideas in the comments! We'd love to see photos of your finished cushions! You can upload a photo of your French mattress cushion in the comments section below or post photos to Facebook, Instagram or Twitter and tag us #Sailrite so we can see what you made!

DIY French Mattress Style Cushions. Great for floor pillows!

What other cushion styles would you like to see us make? Leave your suggestions in the comments section below!