How to Make a Box Cushion for a Swing

Item # X-HT-200606

Ah, a porch swing. Isn’t it so relaxing to sit and rock on a porch swing? Doesn't it make you want to pour a glass of iced tea and read a book while enjoying the beautiful summer weather as you cozy up on your porch swing? Our porch that we decorated for the DIY Porch Makeover already had a great wicker swing installed, but the cushion on it was drab and had seen better days. For our third project in our porch makeover series, we’re going to re-cover the cushion on the swing and show you how to make a classic box cushion.

DIY swing cushion

Box cushions are a great sewing skill to learn because they are so versatile. You can use a box cushion for a swing like this, a chair, a bench, or even as a stadium cushion. Once you know the basic principles for making a box cushion, you can adapt those skills to make a cushion of any size!

For our project we re-covered an old cushion, so we chose to reuse the existing foam. If you’re starting from scratch and you need foam, we recommend using antimicrobial polyurethane foam wrapped in batting. To see how to pattern new foam, you can refer to our "How to Make Cockpit Cushions" blog and video tutorial (200618XHT).

We chose a striped P/Kaufmann Outdoor fabric for our swing cushion. Stripes are great for a box cushion because they provide a built-in guideline for how to line up the panels when sewing. If you’re using a solid or irregular pattern fabric, don’t worry. Instructions are given in the video on making match-up marks to keep your plates evenly aligned when sewing. At Sailrite®, we have a wide selection of outdoor upholstery fabrics perfect for cushions. No matter your style, color palette or budget, we have a fabric that's right for you.

In this video you will learn how to pattern the fabric, make piping, create a zipper plaque and assemble the cushion. And be sure to check out the rest of our DIY Porch Makeover series! Just search "Porch Makeover" on our website to find the collection of blogs and how-tos!

Video Chapters:

  • Patterning from Foam – 0:16 min.
  • Cutting Boxing – 5:41 min.
  • Making Piping – 7:56 min.
  • Creating Zipper Plaque – 11:52 min.
  • Attaching Piping & Boxing – 15:50 min.
  • Sewing Bottom Plate – 24:08 min.
  • Inserting Foam – 25:19 min.
  • Materials List – 27:12 min.

Materials List:

  • Outdoor Living Fabric (we used a P/Kaufmann Outdoor fabric)
  • Seamstick 1/4" Basting Tape #104167
  • V-69 Polyester Thread
  • Foam Piping #1055
  • YKK® #5 Coil Continuous Zipper #104387
  • YKK® #5 Coil Zipper Slider #104333
  • Cushion Wrap Silk Film #103933

Tools List:

  • Sailrite® Edge Hotknife #103800
  • Deluxe Magnetic Sewing Guide #103597
  • Sewing Machine with cording foot
  • Pencil
  • Scissors
  • Seam ripper
  • Tape measure
  • Yardstick

What did you think of this project? How did yours turn out? Any other porch swing fans out there? Share your thoughts and ideas with us in the comments!