What is double welt cord you ask? Why would I want to make that? Ok, it’s for upholstery. I am sure you’ve had some item of furniture you wanted to have recovered, maybe a hand-me-down from grandma or a thrift store find. Then you found out how much it cost and you were like, dude, I could just buy a new one for that price. Enter this tutorial. It’s actually quite easy to make your own double welt cord, AND once you know how to do it you can totally recover anything.
Get the full DIY Double Welt Cord Tutorial after the jump…
And remember, leave a comment on this or any post this week and you could be the proud owner of some fancy-schmancy new glues.
How to Make Double Welt Cord for Upholstery
First of all let me just show you the purpose of this stuff. This is when you need double welt cord: You’re upholstering something (in this case my dining room chairs) and the edges of the fabric have staples like so:
You use double welt cord to cover those staples. You can buy something called “gimp” but it won’t match your fabric and it will cost a ton more than just buying these supplies and making it yourself. So to be awesome you make your matching double welt cord, then simply hot glue it on to your furniture. It’s a lot like making piping (get that tutorial here: How to Sew Piping), but different.
So first you need some very specific supplies. #1 on the list is some actual double welt cord. You can buy this in yards at many fabric stores and definitely at upholstery supply stores. However, if you are going to be making a bunch of it, I recommend buying a giant roll as it is WAY cheaper. I bought mine here.
This next thing you need is a double welt cord foot for your sewing machine. You could do it with a piping foot but it’s SO much easier this way. I recommend skipping the piping foot and just getting a double welt cord foot because you can also use it to make single-cord piping. For some reason new sewers are scared of sewing machine feet, but you shouldn’t be – they make life easier, not harder. You can find one by googling your machine brand and “double welt cord foot” or “welt cord piping foot”. The double welt cord foot looks like this, I put the cord in there without any fabric so you can see how it holds your cord:
And then you need your home decor or upholstery weight fabric cut and sewn into bias strips, which you can learn how to do on our “How to Sew Piping” post:
And you’ll need a heavyweight needle in your machine (how heavy depends on your fabric).
1. Now get yourself set up, with your cord to your left on the floor and your bias strips in your lap or slightly off to the right:
2. Put your double welt cord foot on your machine. Wrap the fabric around your cord and put it all under your foot:
It looks like this all folded up:
Now sew it on with a simple straight stitch. The foot will keep everything nicely in place, your main goal here is to keep the fabric snug so it doesn’t get bunched up. Do that by holding it taught on the right side:
3. Now it looks like this:
When you pull the fabric back it looks like this:
So grab it in your left hand and roll it:
So it looks like this:
Now put it all back in the machine:
And sew in place with a straight stitch.
4. Now it looks like this from the front:
and like this from the back:
So go ahead and cut off the excess fabric close to the seam, like so:
You are done. So here is the back of your welt cord, the part that will be glued onto the furniture:
And here is the front:
Random note, I like to save these kinds of fabric scraps and use them for shipping or gift packaging at a later date:
So I guess now that I made this, I have to finish the dining room chairs. They’ve only been half-done for six months, what’s a few more years…