From bold patterns to vibrant covers, choosing the best fabric for your slipcover allows you to change the look of your living room in an instant.
But choosing the right furniture slipcover can be the difference between elevating the style of your home and making a fashion faux pas. Read our easy to follow guide about how to choose a slipcover for your sofa or armchair so your home will always appear immaculately styled.
What Are the Best Slipcover Fabrics?
There is a wide range of fabrics to choose from for your sofa or armchair slipcover. The right choice for your furniture depends on how heavily it is used and the style of your home.
Some of the best fabrics for slipcovers include:
Cotton is a 100% natural fiber with high durability. It is breathable and hypoallergenic, making it suitable for people with sensitive skin. Cotton is also available in a wide variety of colors and patterns. Use cotton slipcovers in family homes with small children or in an informal living area that sees frequent use.
Although cotton is machine washable, it does wrinkle easily, which can give it an untidy appearance. It also tends to soak up spills quickly, which puts your sofa at risk of developing odors unless it has a waterproof coating.
Choose a medium to heavy density cotton as a lighter cotton weave can show through the pattern or color of the sofa underneath, giving your sofa a muddled look. A 10-12-oz. cotton duck canvas is an excellent option for slipcovers as the blended fiber still has the natural properties of cotton with the durability of a heavier fabric.
Linen is often woven with a jacquard weave and has a nubby texture to give your room instant visual appeal. The material has the highest durability of all the natural fabrics and resists pilling and abrasion. It is also less prone to mold and mildew, which makes it an excellent choice for homes in locations with high humidity.
Like cotton, it wrinkles easily and offers very little stretch, which can make it challenging to find a linen cover that provides the perfect fit for your sofa. Most linen slipcovers feature ties or pleating to allow for a better fit. Linen also needs added care and maintenance to ensure that it does not shrink in the washing machine.
Olefin is not technically a fiber - it is a plastic-based synthetic fabric that is completely water-resistant and extremely tough. It has the look and feel of woolen fabric to add a luxe look to your room, but it is also hard-wearing, resists fading and staining, and can be cleaned with bleach if necessary. Olefin is the ideal option for homeowners with pets or big families.
One of the drawbacks of choosing an olefin slipcover is the lack of variety when it comes to style. You should also take care to dry your washed slipcovers in the shade as prolonged exposure to direct sunlight can cause the fabric to become brittle.
Microfiber is a polyester fabric that comes in a vast range of styles, from cotton-look fabric to faux suede. This means you can protect your sofa without sacrificing your style.
Microfiber is ideal as a slipcover fabric as it holds its color well, making it suitable for numerous washes. It is also exceptionally soft with enough stretch in the material to allow it to form to the shape of your sofa for a more tailored look. Microfiber is a hard-wearing fabric that makes it a great choice for furniture in heavy use areas.
What Slipcover Style Will Be Best for My Furniture Piece?
Different styles of slipcovers are suitable for different furniture pieces. Choosing the right style of slipcover can help you achieve a better fit to give a more refined look to your covered furniture. Some of the style options include:
The one-piece slipcover is the standard cover designed to suit most sofas. They are usually crafted from fabrics that are blended with a stretch material and elasticized at the hem to help achieve a better fit.
They are quick and easy to remove for washing and come in a broader range of sizes than other styles of slipcovers. They are best suited to Lawson and box style sofas and sofas wit slightly rolled arms.
You may need to place a rubber grip between the seat cushion and the frame to keep the cover from bunching or slipping off while you are seated.