Special Nonexistent Furniture

Update your look with slipcovered furniture

We all want to fill our homes with beautiful pieces that showcase our sense of style, but the reality of everyday living requires a balance of form and function. That's where slipcovers come in. These removable covers for sofas, armchairs and bedheads are elegant, easy to clean, and a comparatively small investment than buying a new piece of furniture. Here, we answer all your slipcover questions and give you the lowdown on the latest looks to transform your space.

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What is a slipcover?

A slipcover is a removable cover, usually made from fabric, that's fitted over upholstered furniture such as sofas, armchairs and bedheads. From a practical perspective, slipcovers protect your furniture and allow you to clean the upholstery with ease. From a style perspective, they add character to your space and can be easily changed to switch up the look. For example, a relaxed linen slipcover delivers a coastal feel, while a fitted velvet slipcover would be ideal for a traditional home.

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What are the benefits of slipcovers?

Slipcovers are removable, so you can easily clean them, allowing you to keep your furniture looking as new as the day you bought it. You can also change the fabric or colour seasonally to give your home a fresh look at a fraction of the price. Changing your slipcover not only extends the life of your furniture but helps to keep furniture frames and foam out of landfill, making slipcover furniture a more sustainable choice. 

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What's the best type of fabric to choose for a slipcover?

The type of fabric you select depends on your budget, the style you're going for, and your needs. Natural fibres such as cotton or linen look beautiful but tend to be more expensive and may pill over time. 100% polyester fabrics wear well and are more stain-resistant, and many polyester slipcovers offer a natural fibre look. There are also slipcovers built from a mix of natural and synthetic fibres that deliver the best of both worlds. 

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What colour, patterns and materials should I go for?

You can't go wrong with a neutral slipcover sofa in linen or a linen-look poly-blend. Natural, light grey and charcoal hues are great bases for layering bolder colours and prints via cushions and throws. Slipcover bedheads are less of an investment risk than a sofa, so don't be afraid to take a more fashion-forward approach. You can bring pops of colour and pattern into the bedroom, as well as plush texture such as velvet or bouclé.

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What slipcover looks are trending?

Velvet slipcovers in rich tones are popular for a cosy sofa look, while statement texture such as bouclé or chunkier basket weaves are trending across accent chairs. For a fresh, airy living room look, linen (or linen-look materials) in light neutrals are always in style, while a pinstriped bedhead will introduce a point of interest in the bedroom—just add tonal throw cushions.

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How can I clean and maintain a slipcover?

Read the care instructions carefully. In most cases, the slipcover should be spot cleaned with fabric spray or dry-cleaned, not machine washed or dried. When choosing a fabric, consider the location of your piece and whether it will be exposed to full sun. If so, select a fabric that is less likely to fade. 

How should I fit a slipcover?

Take your time when fitting a slipcover. Don't force the fabric onto the frame or you risk tearing it. If this is a concern, consider velcro fittings that are easier to take on and off. 
Natalie Mell 23 February, 2022

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