Free Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced Tutorials

Shop all day, pay once for delivery - only £2.95*

Watch on Sky 678, Freeview 78, online or on YouTube

Easter Ideas - Chicken Cushion

Combine neutrals with bright pops of colour and appliqué with this quirky chicken cushion. This technique shows you how to combine fabrics to decorative effect.

This vibrant chicken cushion looks fabulous and is deceptively simply to make.

Image slide


Linen fabric 43x89cm (17x45in). Try:

Appliqué fabric: green 17x21cm (7x8in), blue print 11x7cm (4.5x3in)

Turquoise spot 4x11cm (1.5x4.5in). Try:

Fusible web 18x33cm (7x13in)

Stranded cotton, to match fabric

Zip, 40cm (16in)

Cushion pad 40x40cm (16x16in)

Photo Image


Chicken Template


The finished cushion measures 40x40cm (16x16in)


Use a 1.5cm (½in) seam allowance throughout, pressing all seams open as you go

Cutting Out

Cut your linen fabric into the following pieces: cushion front, 43x43cm; cushion back, two pieces 23x43cm each.

Working the Appliqué

Trace the chicken template from the paper pattern provided with your magazine, turn it over, then trace the reverse side of it.


With paper side up, place the fusible web over the reverse of the template and trace around the separate parts of it. or the comb and beak pieces, draw the edges that will lie underneath the body approx 0.5cm (¼in) bigger so that the body piece can sit on top of them later.


Cut out your fabric chicken pieces about 1cm (½in) outside the edges of the drawn lines. You’ll need a body, wing, comb and beak.


Place the fusible web pieces, paper side up, over the wrong side (WS) of the relevant appliqué fabrics and press firmly into place.


Cut out your appliqué pieces around the drawn lines.


Peel off the paper backing and then position the appliqué pieces right sides (RS) up centrally on top of the front of your cushion. Remember to overlap the body piece over the comb and beak pieces. Place the wing piece on top of the body piece. Press each one firmly into place.

How to guide Image

Using blanket stitch and two strands of stranded cotton, stitch the pieces in place all the way around the edges. Draw the feather lines and an eye on top of the body, then backstitch over them using stranded cotton.

How to guide Image
Making the Cushion

Place the back pieces RS together and stitch a 4cm line in from each side along the top. Then using the longest machine stitch, stitch between the lines

How to guide Image

Open out the back pieces and press them WS up. Pin the zip over the longer stitched gap between the two seams.

How to guide Image

Using a zipper foot, stitch the zip in place on both sides. Then you can remove the threads from the longer stitched seam so you can open and close the zip.

How to guide Image

Open the zip a little way, then place the cushion front and back piece right sides (RS) together. If you like, you can cut the corners into a shallow curve to reduce bulk at the corners – this will give your cushion cover a softer look. Sew the pieces together around all four edges.

How to guide Image

Turn the cushion cover right side (RS) out through the zip gap. Use a knitting needle to help push out the corners. Insert the cushion pad to finish.

Author Image
First published in Simply Sewing magazine