How to Make Your Own Piping

Back when I showed you my screen porch tour, I told you it really wasn’t 100% finished. Why? Well, I really wanted to sew a cushion for the garden bench.

As I was looking for piping for my cushion, I was getting VERY disappointed! Why? Two reasons:

  1. I couldn’t find a simple piping cord in a white color.
  2. Anything that might work (off-white) was VERY expensive!

So, I decided to teach myself how to make my own piping for the cushion. I can tell you now, I WILL NEVER BUY PIPING AGAIN! It was that easy.


  • Cotton rope
  • Inexpensive cotton/poly blend white fabric
  • White thread
  • Scissors
  • Pins
  • Sewing machine with a zipper foot
  • Iron


1. Start by measuring your fabric and put a snip at 3″.

2. Tear the fabric along the length. The strip should stay approximately 3″ along the rip.

3. To add more length, cut two pieces at a 45˚ angle.

4. Pin the two angled ends together as shown (at a 90˚ angle).

5. Stitch the two pieces together along the angled edge.

6. Open up the fabric and press the seam.

7. Lay your rope in the center of the fabric.

8. Line up the raw edges and pin next to the cord.

9. Using your sewing machine and zipper foot, stitch very close along the edge of the rope but not on top of it.

And this is your finished product! I actually like how the thin fabric shows the spiral pattern of the rope through it.

Now, head on over to my tutorial for sewing the bench cushion cover!

52 replies
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    • Brittany Bailey
      Brittany Bailey says:

      Sue, you have to do a little math. Figure about 3-4″ for the strips of fabric and multiply that width x the number of strips you can fit on your width of fabric (usually fabrics are 45 – 60″ in width.) To figure out how much piping total, figure out the linear edge(s) of your cushion. Does that help?

  1. Emily
    Emily says:

    Everywhere I’ve seen piping made, they had to cut their fabric on the bias. Was it more difficult to get it to go around the edges, or did you not really notice a difference?

  2. Crystal @ 29 Rue House
    Crystal @ 29 Rue House says:

    Hi! I wanted to show what I made with the help of you piping tutorial and box cushion cover tutorial over at the CSI Project. I tried to work an envelope closure on the box cushion but it still needs the velco (I haven’t done that yet). Great tutorials – couldn’t have done it without them!
    Here’s the first post on it:
    And the second with the finished cushion (minus the velcro)

  3. Celine
    Celine says:

    I am so glad I decided to look for a tutorial on piping cushions! I have cushions to re-cover for a sailboat and this tutorial on piping and making the cushion covers is both easy to understand and most helpful. Thanks so much!!!


Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] and made new piping with my new fabric. Here is a good link on how to make long runs of piping from Pretty Handy Girl’s amazing blog. While I sewed the piping for the top part of the cushion. I also sewed piping for the bottom of […]

  2. […] to finish the edges. It wasn’t too hard, and it was worth the extra effort.  Brittany has a great piping tutorial here or you could always leave off the piping if you […]

  3. […] Adding the Piping – (Tutorial for Making Your Own Piping Here) […]

  4. […] Pretty Handy Girl […]

  5. […] Piping (see tutorial for making your own piping) […]

  6. […] tackle, so long ago.  What the heck was fusible woven interfacing and how does one make their own covered cotton cording? What were to me then, unknown and foreign sewing materials and directions, have now become […]

  7. […] long ago.  What the heck was fusible woven interfacing and how does one make their own covered cotton cording? What were to me then, unknown and foreign sewing materials and directions, have now become […]

  8. […] make your cording. (You’ll use your zipper foot for this. See this tutorial from Brittany at Pretty Handy Girl for […]

  9. […] (optional) 80 inches of piping, or 1/8 yard 45 inch wide fabric and 80 inches of cotton cord to make your own piping.  There is a great piping tutorial here. […]

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