This pretty tone-on-tone floor cushion falls into the Pouf category but doesn’t have the soft structure of a traditional pouf. Instead, it features a form-fitting upholstery style cover with clean, modern lines. Put your feet up and read on for our easy, step-by-step instructions.
We selected a mid-weight décor faux suede fabric in a rich sage green, a bendable color the works beautifully year ‘round.
The Diamond and Arc pieced design is repeated on both the top and bottom of the cushion. The thickness of the faux suede allows each seam to sink into the nap and beautifully emphasize each of the lines that makes up the radiating star pattern.
The interior of our Floor Pouf is high density foam wrapped with a single layer of high loft polyester batting. You can, as we did, cut your own round from a standard square foam block. Or, if you’re lucky enough to have a local upholstery shop, have them custom cut a round for you.
We offer a free downloadable circle template. Once you print and assemble it, keep it in your sewing library as it includes concentric circle patterns at this project’s required 24” diameter as well as 12”, 10″, 8″ and 6″. It’s a super handy template to have on hand.
There are two additional downloads: one contains the perfectly sized Diamond and Arc shapes and the second is a Cutting Guide template that maps out how to position all sixteen pieces for the top and the matching sixteen pieces for the bottom.
This Guide is important because faux suede has a nap. Special care must taken when cutting the pieces so the nap of the fabric is consistent on each side of the finished pouf. This is similar to working with any napped fabric, such as corduroy or fleece. Our Cutting Guide shows how the pieces can be laid out on the fabric. But, because the fabric is the same top and bottom, don’t forget to mark the pieces to keep track of each set.
We also show you the steps below to create your own “vacuum seal bag” that will help condense the high density foam so it can more easily slide into the sewn cover. It’s fun!
Covered buttons complete the look with a slight tuft cinching the center. Our full tutorials on both Covered Buttons and Tufting are linked below within the instructions.
Our Floor Pouf finishes at approximately 24” in diameter x 4” in depth.
Sewing Tools You Need
- Sewing machine and standard presser foot
Fabric and Other Supplies
- 1½ yards of 58″+ wide décor-weight faux suede or similar: we used 58” Signature Series Multi-Purpose Faux Suede Decor Fabric in Sage from Joann Fabrics
- ONE 24” x 24” x 4” foam block; this will be cut into a 24” circle – if you have a favorite upholstery foam supplier, you could also have a 24” x 4” circle custom cut.
- 1 yard of 50″+ wide high loft polyester batting; you can find this on a bolt at your local fabric retailer or use a pre-cut packaged for bed-size quilts
- TWO 2½” covered button kits; we used Dritz Home Cover Button Kits
- Scraps of standard batting for the covered buttons (creates a smooth, soft finish to the top of the buttons); optional
- ¼” wide double-sided fusible web seam tape, such as Pellon Steam-A-Seam; optional, but helpful to flatten the seam allowances for the best finish to the top and bottom piecing as faux suede can be hard to press
- All purpose thread to match fabric
- Waxed thread to stitch covered buttons in place; we used Dritz Home Waxed Button Thread
- Fabric spray adhesive to adhere the batting to the foam
- See-through ruler
- Scissors or rotary cutter and mat
- Measuring tape
- Iron and ironing board
- Fabric pen or pencil
- Seam gauge
- Seam ripper
- Straight pins
- Standard hand sewing needle
- Upholstery needle for attaching the covered buttons
- ONE large plastic bag big enough to fit the 24” foam circle – you’ll use this to help insert the foam into the cover; we recommend a dry cleaning bag – it’s thin and easier to tear open and pull back out once the foam is inserted
- A vacuum cleaner; yep – we said a vacuum cleaner – it’s optional, but as shown below, it’s a great way to scrunch the foam down to a more manageable size to insert it into the cover
• POUF PATTERN: three pages (Pouf Diamond Part A, Pouf Diamond Part B, Pouf Arc Part C) bundled into one PDF to make the download easier
• BATTING CIRCLE TEMPLATE: two pages (Piece 1 and Piece 2) also bundled into one PDF. Print FOUR copies to assemble into one complete circle.
• CUTTING GUIDE: one page helpful to use while cutting fabric with nap so it’s consistent on each side of the pouf.
IMPORTANT: Each of the pages in each of the PDF downloads is ONE 8½” x 11″ sheet. You must print the PDFs at 100%. DO NOT SCALE to fit the page.
- Cut out each pattern piece along the solid line.
- Using the arrows printed on the pattern pieces, butt together (do no overlap) Pouf Diamond Part A and Pouf Diamond Part B. Tape together to create the full-size Pouf Diamond pattern.
- In the same manner and using the arrows printed on the pattern pieces, butt together (do no overlap) Pouf Arc Part C and Pouf Arc Part D. Tape together to create the full-size Pouf Arc pattern.
- Assemble each of the four sets of the Batting Circle template in the same manner, using the arrows to assemble Piece 1, Piece 2, and Piece 3 into a quarter circle. Then assemble the four quarter circles into the full circle. As above, butt together (do not overlap) and tape.
IMPORTANT: Faux suede is a decorator weight fabric with nap. Special care must taken when cutting the pieces so the nap of the fabric is consistent on each side of the finished pouf. This is similar to working with any napped fabric, such as corduroy or fleece. Our Cutting Guide shows how the pieces can be laid out on your fabric.
On the Cutting Guide, we indicate the top pieces and the bottom pieces in different colors, showing how each of the pieces for each side are cut in the same direction so the nap is going the correct way. In the actual construction, because the top and bottom are the same fabric, we used our fabric pencil to mark an X on all the pieces for one side to keep track.
- From the suede fabric, first fold your fabric crosswise, matching the selvedges. Cut TWO 5” strips parallel to the selvedge. Trim these strips to measure 5” x 38½“.
- Open up the remaining faux suede fabric and lay it wrong side up on the cutting mat. Using our Cutting Guide for placement, trace around each printed pattern.
- Alternate the direction of each piece so the pieces interlock, spacing them about ¼” apart. You will need 16 Diamonds and 16 Arcs (8 of each for the top and for the bottom). Place an ‘X’ on those pieces that point down.
- Cut out each traced piece along the drawn line and separate the pieces into two stacks – those with an ‘X’ and those without.
- Find the foam block and the Batting Circle template. Place the template on the block and using a Sharpie® or similar, trace the needed curve in each corner.
- Trim along the drawn curve. Foam professionals recommend a bread knife with tight serrations as the best tool to use at home, although an electric carving knife also works well. If you’re a home with construction tools on hand, you can use a band saw.
- Use the same Batting Circle to cut two 24” circles from the high loft polyester batting.
- From the remaining batting, cut two 5” x width-of-fabric strips. Our batting was 48” so we cut two 5” x 48” strips. You’ll use one strip at full size and will trim the second strip to fit when applying to the foam circle.
- Find the foam circle and the spray adhesive. Working in a well-ventilated area, adhere the batting to the top and bottom of the foam circle using spray adhesive. Apply the strips of batting to the sides in the same manner although you will need to trim one of the strips to get a perfect fit. Place one full-legth strip around the foam. Once that is adhered, place the second strip, trimming it to fit against the first strip. You want all the edges of the batting to butt together, not overlap. Allow the adhesive to dry according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
At Your Sewing Machine & Ironing Board
NOTE: The top and bottom of our Floor Pouf are constructed in exactly the same manner. You just need to make sure, as described above, to keep your sets of pieces separated into two stacks so you don’t accidentally mix them up, resulting in one or more pieces with the nap running in the wrong direction. That would be sad.
Create the center diamond section
- Working with your first stack, match up the four pairs of Diamonds, placing each pair right sides together. Pin along one long side.
- At the corner (of each pair) on the pinned side, mark ½” in from each edge, creating a cross; this will be the start point for the seam joining these two pieces.
- Repeat for each of the four pairs.
- Slide the first pair under the raised presser foot of your sewing machine at the marked corner.
- Lower the needle (keep the foot raised so you have a clear view) into the center of the marked cross.
- Lower the foot, lock the stitch, and using a ½” seam allowance, sew toward the point of the diamond.
- Repeat for each pair. Press the seams open.
NOTE: Remember, when pressing faux suede, always press from the WRONG side.
- Separate the sewn pairs so two sets of two sewn pairs (two sets of four diamonds).
- Place the first two sewn pairs right sides together, aligning the long straight edge. Mark the upper corner ½” from each edge as you did above with the individual pairs.
- Make sure the seams align at the bottom.
- Using a ½” seam allowance, drop your needle in at the marked corner cross and sew down to the point.
- Press the seam open.
- Repeat to sew together the remaining sewn pair in the same manner. You now have the two halves of the cushion top.
- Place the two halves right sides together.
- At the center point, trim away the “dog ears” so the raw edges are straight and flush.
- Be extremely careful to match up the seams at the center point. It can helpt to place a pin through the exact center of the seams.
- Mark the outer corners ½” in from each edge with a cross as you’ve done above and pin all the way across.
- Using a ½” seam allowance, stitch this center horizontal seam.
- As you did above, start and stop (and lock) your seam at the marked cross.
- Press all seams open. Remember to press from the wrong side.
- Repeat to construct the second side of the cushion in the same manner.
Add the Arcs to the center Diamonds
- To add the Arcs to the center Diamonds of the top, you’ll use an inset seam technique. This means you will sew one side of each Arc at a time.
- To start, you’ll mark each point of the Arc in the same manner you marked the corners of the Diamonds above: ½” in from each side of the point.
- This means each Arc with have three marked points.
- Find the the Center Diamonds sewn panels (the top and the bottom). Place each panel wrong side up on your work surface. Mark each point of each panel in the same manner: ½” in from each side of each corner point.
- Flip over one Center Diamond panel so it is now right side up
- Position an Arc between two of the marked points.
- Flip the Arc up onto the Center Diamonds panel, which means they are now right sides together. Match the markings along one side from the outer corner to the inner point.
- Pin in place from the outer corner to the inner point.
- With the Center Diamonds panel facing wrong side up, and using a ½” seam allowance, stitch from the outer corner of the Arc to its inner point, stopping this new seam where it meets the seam of the Center Diamonds panel.
- Remove the project from the machine and reposition the Arc to sew the second side in the same manner, but this time you are stitching from the inner point out to the end of the Arc.
- Press the seam allowance toward the cushion top.
- Repeat to inset each remaining Arc.
- This completes one side of the cushion. Create the second side using the second stack of Arcs.
- As mentioned, faux suede must be pressed from the wrong side because of its nap. It should also be pressed on low heat. Because of this, it can be hard to get the seam allowance as flat as you want. The flatter the seam, the smoother the top. To combat this, we used strips of ¼” double-sided fusible web to hold the seam allowances open. Place the strips under the seam allowance, close to the stitching.
- Press according to the manufacturer’s instructions, using a press cloth if necessary for the higher heat setting.
Create the side ring
- Find the two 5” side strips. We’ve mentioned several times (yep… it’s getting annoying, right? But it’s so important!) that faux suede fabric has a nap. You need to make sure the nap goes the same direction all the way around the cushion even though the strip is made up of two pieces. To do this, place the two strips side by side. Brush the nap with your hand to determine which direction the nap goes.
- Once confirmed, place the two strips right sides together with the nap running in the same direction. Pin along the 5” ends.
- Using a ½” seam allowance, stitch the ends together to form a ring, which means you are stitching two short seams.
- Your two seams mark the halfway points of the cushion side ring. Fold the ring in half, matching these seams, and mark the halfway point between the seams with a pin.
- The ring is now divided into quarters. Fold once again to find the halfway point between the quarter pins, dividing the side into eighths. You now have eight pin points to match up with the eight points of the sewn arcs. Aren’t you clever?!
- Clip the raw edge of the ring, which will allow the ring to ease and fit more smoothly along the curve of the main cushion panel. Take care that these clips are within the ½” seam allowance. We made a clip about every 1″.
- Pin the clipped side of the ring to the main cushion panel, matching the eight marking pins to the inner points of the Arcs.
- Using a ½” seam allowance, sew the ring to the main panel.
- Repeat to clip, pin, and stitch the remaining raw edge of the ring to the remaining main panel, but on this side, leave a 15” opening to insert the foam circle. Remember to securely lock your seam at either side of this opening.
Insert the batting-wrapped foam circle
- Find the batting-wrapped form circle, on which the adhesive should be dry. Find the large plastic bag. As noted above in the supply list, we recommend using a dry cleaning bag if possible as it’s nice and slippery and very easy to gently tear apart to remove it at the end. For our sample, we happened to use a standard large black trash bag that was on-hand, which also worked.
- Slip the foam circle into the plastic bag.
- Find your vacuum cleaner. This is the fun part and works in the same way as those vacuum sealed bags you can buy at the store. Insert the vacuum’s hose into the plastic bag. Gather the opening of the plastic bag around the hose, making sure you have no gaps. Secure the bag around the hose with tape, wrapping tightly. We used duct tape.
- Turn on the vacuum cleaner and watch the magic! The foam will shrink as the air is sucked out of the plastic bag.
- Quickly insert the foam into the completed cushion cover while the hose is still attached and the vacuum is on.
- Turn off the vacuum and allow the foam to return to its shape. Check the position to make sure everything fits smoothly.
- If the foam needs a better fit, simply turn on the vacuum again and adjust as necessary. With the vacuum off, make a final check to insure the cover is smooth and the edges of the foam are aligned to the top and bottom “ring seams.” Remove the tape, pull out the vacuum hose, and gently work the plastic bag out from inside of the cover. It’s okay to tear the plastic as you pull it out.
- Thread a hand sewing needle with matching thread and close the opening with a tiny ladder stitch.
- The two covered buttons are made using scraps of the faux suede along with scraps of thin quilt batting. The fabric is cut according to the manufacturer’s instructions (there should be a template in the package). The batting should be cut to the same size as the top of the button (a 2½” circle for each button).
- Center the batting on the wrong side of the fabric circle, then place the button form over the batting. Assemble the button according to the manufacturer’s instructions. If you’re brand new to the technique, we have a step-by-step tutorial you can review prior to starting.
NOTE: Faux suede can to hard to gather. We found that adding a simple hand gathering stitch (a running stitch) around the outer edge of the fabric circle helped ease and hold the fabric in place while the button back was snapped in place.
- Using the upholstery needle and heavy waxed thread, attach a button to each side of the cushion. Work the needle through the cushion and foam, inserting it at the center of the cushion and out the other side at the center. Pull the thread tight to create an indent. Tie off the thread and trim so the thread ends hide under the button.
NOTE: We’ve summarized the steps for this tufting, so if you are also new to this technique, take a look at our full tutorial on tufting prior to starting.
Project Design: Alicia Thommas
Sample Creation and Instructional Outline: Michele Mishler