Sunday, 25 October 2015

Marimekko Unikko Cushions

After two years of major house renovations cushion making has been on the back-burner in terms of priorities. Enough time for me to collect a decent amount of fabric stash in the form of my all-time favourite print the Unikko from Marimekko.

A bit of good fortune and good timing meant that all the variations of Marimekko fabrics were purchased on sale (this hardly ever happens with Marimekko fabric). The big red / green print was a limited 50th anniversary edition from the Marimekko store at St. Christopher's Place in Marylebone purchased at 50% off during their closing down sale : (

The large yellow and blue print came from Skandium in Marylebone at 30% discount and finally all other versions were from the John Lewis sale earlier in the year at 50% discount!
Overall some pretty epic savings over the course of a year..... 

Onto cushion-making. After a little bit of internet research and studying cushions I already own I came up with the following process:

First I measured the fabric I bought and split it into equal sections to accommodate as big a cushion as possible including the usual 1.5cm seam allowance.

Wrong sides together, sew one seam allowance on a basting stitch (which will be for the zip). Iron the seam allowance open and measure where the zip will be. Sew using your regular stitch length either side of the zip including securing stitches at the start and end point.

Pin and baste the zip into the required position.

Turn the  cushion wrong sides together and secure the zip into position using the basting stitches as a guide. After looking at some shop-bought cushions rather than sew 'around' the zip I sewed straight across the width of the cushion on both sides of the zip.

You effectively now have a continuous loop of fabric. The bonus here is depending on where you want the placement of the zip on the back of your cushion you can change the placement of the print depending how the pattern looks. With this bold design, just a few centimetres made a big difference to the aesthetics of the front of the cushion.

After securing the zip in position, use scissors or an un-picker to remove the basting stitches so you can open the zip. Open the zip a little, turn the cushion cover right sides together again and then sew up the side seams.

After completing the final seams use the small zip opening to turn the cushion the correct way around and steam iron to fix the seams in position.

Here are the final cushions below without the cushion pads. I used an online company for the cushion pads called Cushion Warehouse. They sell an excellent range of cushions pads of all sizes and filling types at very reasonable prices.
I would highly recommend the products but the delivery time was long (10 days) and the customer service not so brilliant.  I used the 27" pads with luxury cluster fibre for £10 each. Cushion Warehouse advised to use the next size up for a cushion pad (ie. if your cushion cover measures 26" then go for the 27" cushion pad) for a better look and fill. 

I was so happy to finally use my precious Marimekko fabric and totally chuffed to bits with the end result.

Have you made anything for your home that you are particularly proud of?


  1. Beautiful your cushions! :) I think I'll need to make some, too, thanks for the tipps and the inspirtaion! :) I cannot even remember the last time I made something for my home.

    1. Thanks Kat. I really enjoyed making the cushions and it makes me so happy to see my favourite print everyday!

  2. How lovely are these? Fabulous fabric well done on the bargains.

    1. Thanks Louise. I love the fabric - as you can probably tell!

  3. Really fantastic cushions! Must be very satisfying to get them just how you want by making yourself, as well as saving a lot of money! I'm getting quite tempted to make a quilt or blanket for my home, but that is a pretty big undertaking and I've plenty of other ideas/plans, so it might be a while until I get around to that!

  4. Yes it's really fun and satisfying making exactly what you have envisioned. The great thing is whatever is you it totally unique. Looking forward to seeing what home project you have in mind.

  5. I love this gorgeous print, and at a bargain price too - well done! You are good, putting a proper zip in and everything, I am sometimes a little lazy when it comes to cushion covers and just cheat with the envelope method or just a quick slip stitch (which I usually regret when they need washing!) Thanks for shairng at #HandmadeMonday

    1. Thanks Julia, yes I usually do an envelope cushion method but went all out with these cushions as they were going to take centre stage in the lounge and wanted to go the extra mile with zips (definitely took a lot longer!).