Ironing board cover in an hour

I often wondered why anyone would make a cover for an ironing board when you can buy one for $10, and they get scorched and ruined anyway. Then, I tried to find a new cover for my mini ironing board. I could not find one anywhere! It was time to make my own.

I came home from walking the dog a little before 6 pm one Saturday evening and started making the cover. It was finished shortly after 7 pm, when my husband shouted out that dinner was ready. (It was his turn to cook.)

Quick and easy ironing board cover

My new ironing board is set up on my sewing table and ready to go.

All you need is:

  • a piece of fabric slightly larger than the top of the board
  • another piece of fabric large enough to cut a long 2-inch bias strip
  • two pieces of quilt wadding slightly larger than the top of the board (a good way to use up some offcuts)
  • elastic.

The steps are very simple.

  1. Cut:
    • one piece of fabric by laying your board on top of the fabric on the floor and tracing around it, allowing a 3-inch margin (see note below)
    • two pieces of quilt wadding: one the same size as the top of the board and the other an inch or so larger on all sides. Again, trace around your board on the floor to measure
    • one 2-inch strip, cut on the bias, long enough to go around the edges of the fabric piece. You may need to join several lengths to make it long enough.
  2. Fold and press the bias strip in half, wrong sides together.
  3. Sew the bias strip all the way around the edges of the fabric with the raw edges together. To make the opening to thread the elastic through, simply fold under about half an inch on each end and finger press before sewing. (Optional: overlock the raw edges for neatness.) I put the opening on one of the straighter edges.
  4. Use a safety pin to thread a piece of elastic through the casing.
  5. Layer the fabric, large piece of wadding and smaller piece of wadding on the floor. Place the ironing board upside-down on top. This is probably the trickiest part of the whole exercise. Draw up the elastic and tie a knot. You are done!
Quick and easy ironing board cover

Underneath, the cover looks like this.

Home-made ironing board cover

I made the cover so quickly that there was no time to take photos. Here, I have turned the seam back to show the stitching and the opening of the elastic casing. All it takes is one row of stitching and an optional overlocked seam for tidiness. How easy!

The only thing I would do differently next time is that I would allow less than a 3-inch margin when covering a small ironing board. On a regular ironing board, where the legs are in the middle, a 3-inch margin would work fine, but on a small board, where the legs are close to the outer edges, the cover gets in the way of the legs a little. I thought about unpicking it, trimming the excess fabric away and reattaching the bias strip, but it is not that big a nuisance so I decided to leave it as is and make a note of it for next time.

If you need further help, a good tutorial for making your own cover can be found at Crazy Mom Quilts. I did something similar but simplified the binding and cut it on the bias to avoid the puckers.

In other news, I have only two more Dear Jane blocks to make! Yes, TWO!

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25 thoughts on “Ironing board cover in an hour

  1. Hi Carla, this is pretty cool! I had a ironboard cover to by few weeks ago … they are not really expensive here but really ugly! What a great idea to make one of yourself.
    Thank you for sharing. Kind regards from grey-cold-rainy-November Germany, Annett

    • I bought a new cover for our large board. It is nowhere near as pretty as the homemade mini one, but it has the benefit of that heatproof/insulating fabric. It is a compromise.
      Hello back from sunny Perth!

  2. It turned out so cute! I made a cover for my ironing board, and only because I had the materials already so it was almost free. And I added a lot of extras to keep the cover taut because I hate when they shift! But the best part about making your own is using some pretty fabric!

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