Tag Archives: upholstery

How to Build a Yoga Bolster – Stuffing! Part Two

14 Jan

I like to stuff my bolsters with blankets for a couple of reasons – one is that blankets are much easier to come by than the cotton “felt” batting used commercially and the other is that they can be taken out and washed, if necessary.  I also have a fair amount of fabric stashed inside of bolsters:-)

Most blankets are between 80 and 90″ long, which makes them a good size for our bolsters.  They do not have to be exactly 90″.  There is some wiggle room.  I folded this one in 3, so it is a nice 30″ width.  It is a rather awful, cheap acrylic, which turns out to be ideal for a bolster because it rolls well and is lighter than a wool blanket. I pick them up at thrift stores for $5 or so and run them through the wash a couple of times, but have found them in stores like Walmart for not much more.

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The next blanket in worked better folded length-wise:

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Pretty pink!  Time to start rolling:

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In truth, I did add one more small blanket to this to make it fat enough.  It will all depend on the size of the blankets.  Two king-sized blankets may be enough.  Sometimes a blanket must be cut in half to make it fit.  Another good reason to use the acrylics.  They won’t ravel.

Finished roll:

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Slide the blanket roll into the liner:

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Tie the knot:

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Slide the open end into the cover. Mr. Bolster has a lovely hat!

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Tie it up.  Now the circle that was sewed into the liner shows through the opening:

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Fully  functional bolster:

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Stuffing – Part Two (B)

I don’t have any of the studio’s covers and liners here, so I can’t show you that until our group stuffing day.  Here is the bale of cotton we work with:

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You can see that it is nearly as tall as the patio table.  The massive plastic bag the bales come in is my pattern tracing medium.  Since we use three bales per batch of bolsters, more or less, I get a lot of tracing plastic!  The heavy brown kraft paper is also great stuff, but I haven’t found a perfect use for it yet.

A partly used bale.  It is unbleached cotton, still with lots of impurities and grit in it.  This stuff is often used in upholstery, under the cover and over a foam block to give the cushy factor.

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It is simply rolled and inserted into the liners exactly like the blankets.  Photos will be posted when we have our stuffing party!

How to Build a Yoga Bolster. Part 1

13 Jan

You will need: 2 pieces of fabric, each 30″ square – one for the lining and one for the cover.  2 circles of fabric, about 9 5/8th in diameter.  A dinner plate or pot lid can make good templates, otherwise, you need to use a compass or string and pencil version of circle drawing apparatus.  Make both circles from the cover fabric.

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Cording, string or a self-made drawstring.  The black one in the photo is made from the lining fabric.

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Serge or sew 1/2″ seams on one side of each of the squares so you have two tubes. Each tube will have two open ends.  Be sure these seams are secure as it will take a lot of strain.  Zig zag to finish the seams if you don’t have a serger.

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Quarter the circles by folding in half and marking the quarters.

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Quarter the tubes and pin at the marks.  Finish pinning the circles in place, easing the fabric as needed. Sew/serge/finish.

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Turn under the open ends 1/4″ all the way around, then turn under again 5/8″

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Leave a good gap in the casing and securely finish the beginning and ending of the stitching.

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Insert the ties.

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Now you have two long bags with drawstrings.  Next up – stuffing!

Good news – the machine is fine:-)

7 Sep

But it has become very fussy about needles and the only way it would work was with Schmetz size 14 stretch.  Once I got that worked out, after some fruitless and profanity filled tests, it was happy again.  BUT I am totally stuck on how to decorate this dress and have been starting all kinds of other projects to keep myself occupied while mulling it over.

Today’s project, spurred on by the Design Helper telling me to work on it or he would send it to the dump, is my Grandad’s chair.  I love it because it has beautiful lines, is a beautiful example of late 1960’s “Danish Modern” furniture, is extremely well made (I am sure he paid a lot for it back in the day), because it is one of the few arm chairs I have ever sat in that allows my feet to fully touch the floor and of course, because it belonged to my Grandad.  We have hauled it around with us for decades and although I had to finally let go of the matching couch, which nobody ever felt comfortable sitting in (weird paradox there) I have used in one way or another for ages.  But in this house, it has mainly resided in the garage.  We tried it for awhile in our bedroom, but in spite of the best of intentions of using it as a quiet reading spot, it ended up as many bedroom furnishings do, as a repository for discarded clothing.

So off to the basement!  I found it this morning with the seat cushion askew, our set of jumper cables under the seat, a drop cloth, and old cammo jacket belonging to one of the kids and a copy of Stephen Leacock’s Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town tossed in a variety of ways over and around it.  Here it is:

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I think it is happy that it is getting attention.  See the smile?

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Step one is to remove the coverings piece by piece.  The bottom had about a hundred staples in it, all of which were rusty.  None of the staples underneath it were rusty though, so that is a relief.  Here is the strapping under the chair.  No springs, which I hope somehow will make the job a bit easier.   A little “before” pic.

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And the “after”

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The strapping is stretched out and will need to be replaced. The frame is in beautiful shape and heavily bolted together.  Time now to bring in and set up another “use it or it goes to the dump” piece of furniture – a huge table currently sitting outside with a “free” sign on it.   Stay tuned!

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