Sewing Project: Tissue Box Slip-Cover

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverI love sewing but I wouldn’t dream of sewing a slipcover for a sofa or some other large piece of furniture.  Too overwhelming!  Too much time!  I’d much rather sew something small, using my fabric scraps, and that I can start and finish in an afternoon.  This tissue box slip-cover fits that criteria.  These covers are simple, easy, and can really tie together an entire look in your room. This project does require you to know how to sew straight seams on a sewing machine and use an iron to press your seams.  It’s really quite easy and very clever!

How to make a tissue box slip-cover

To complete this project, you will need.

  • 2/3 yard of 45” fabric or you can check your scrap bag.  This project doesn’t take much.
  • Fabric marking pen that dries clear in air.
  • Sewing machine, iron, and the usual sewing notions.
  • Pattern {at end of post}

Prepare your fabric by washing, drying, and ironing prior to beginning this project.  All seams are sewn using a 1/2” seam allowance.

Place fabric on flat surface and place pattern pieces on fabric.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverPin pattern pieces to fabric.  Visualize how the pattern will work by placing a tissue box on the pattern piece.  This is a good way to see if your box will work with this pattern.  Simply adjust pattern as needed.  I’m using 1/2” seams for this project so make sure you add that into your pattern if you must make your own piece.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverThis piece is just the tissue box.  One long side and one short of the box.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-Cover
Cutting along the cutting line – carefully with sharp scissors.

After you’ve pinned pattern pieces to fabric, cut pattern pieces on line marked “cut here”. Save time by doubling fabric for pattern pieces that need to have 2 pieces cut.  Cut with right sides together.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverCut out all the pattern pieces before moving onto the next step.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverAfter your pieces are cut, take pattern piece #1 (top) and make sure right sides of fabric are facing one another.  Poke pin holes through the paper where circles are.  This is where you will mark with a fabric pen from the top of the pattern.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-Cover
Mark holes with a pin and then make a mark with fabric pen (one that disappears over time) to show where to sew.

After you’ve poked pin holes through the pattern, push pen through holes to mark fabric underneath.  You are marking where you’ll sew the top seam of the cover.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-Cover
Connecting the dots I’ve marked by sewing.

After you’ve marked your 4 holes, connect the dots by stitching the rectangle and connect the dots.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverFinished product of connecting the dots.  Now, you’re ready to carefully trim the seam.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverStart by folding top in half.  Line up sides so top is even.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-Cover
Carefully and slowly cut down the center of this seam.

Cut seam but make sure you stay inside the the stitches you’ve made.  Trim close to your seam but not too close!

This short video will show the next step.

Now warm up your iron so that you can press that seam nice and flat.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-Cover

Press your seam with lots of steam and use the tip of iron straighten out any bumps. Be sure and put pressure on the iron to get a crisp seam.  Please note: I’m not really ironing on my cutting mat.  That’s just where my camera was set-up.

Next, stitch around the outside of the seam that you just pressed. This is to top-stitch it into place.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-Cover
After pressing your seam, stitch around opening to reinforce this seam.

Next, baste stitch around the outside to keep all of your layers straight and together.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-Cover
Baste around edge of top pieces to keep two layers together.

Take piece #2 (you’ll need to tape this pattern piece together), pin ends together and stitch.  Do this to both ends so when you’re finished with step, you will have a square/rectangle of fabric, which will become the sides of your cover.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverSet your machine to use 1/2” seam allowance.  Measure from your needle to the guide to get your measurement correct.

Make sure sewing machine gauge is set correctly.
Make sure sewing machine gauge is set correctly.

Use your guide to make sure you’re being consistent with your 1/2” seam allowance.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverSew side seams, right sides together with 1/2” seam allowance.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverAfter sewing both side seams of piece #2, press seams open with iron.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverPin side pieces, which are now in a round shape to top piece.

Watch this video for pinning techniques.

Now pin all the way around and you’ll be ready to sew your top piece to side rectangular piece.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverOnce you’ve pinned it all the way around including your corners, sew the seam with 1/2” seam allowance.

Next, press your seams on the inside.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverNow, flip the tissue box cover around and press the finished side seams. Use your ham for this.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-Cover
Use your iron to press the seams and pull fabric as you go to get crisp, finished seams.

Use a ham (this is the name of a stuffed form sewers use to get curved seams flattened and I have no idea where the name came from!) with your iron to press your seams.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverTake pattern piece #3 and press fabric turned up by 1/2”.  Press one short side and one long side of pattern piece.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverStitch in place and press.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverAt this point, it may help you to place the cover on the tissue box inside out to see how your project is coming along.  You could trim all of these strings but you don’t have to.  No one will see these seams so save yourself the work.  Place bottom pattern piece #3 with two finished sides on bottom to see where to line up the piece and pin.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverPin two unfinished sides to two sides of top cover.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverThis is another view of the bottom of the box, with two sides pinned to the sides, ready to sew into place.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverAfter sewing two bottom sides, press the other part of the sides that are left.  Turn sides up 1/2” and press into place.  Sew after you’ve pressed, then give a quick press once you’ve sewn the seam.  You’re almost done…now to add the ribbon to finish the slip-cover.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverTrim ribbon pieces to about 8”-10” long.  I’m using a wide ribbon but you can use a more narrow ribbon.  You can also use any ribbon you have around your sewing studio.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverTrim edges of ribbon so they don’t unravel.  This gives your ribbon ends a very finished look.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverAttach your ribbons at corner and about half way down the box.  I don’t have set spots where I sew them.  Just make sure you line them up and sew back and forth a few times to ensure they ribbons stay put.  You can tie in a bow or you can…

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverTie in a double knot, whichever look you prefer.

Sewing Project:  Tissue Box Slip-CoverNow, stand back and admire your handiwork!  You have turned a not very interesting tissue box into something pretty, covering up a functional item with a lovely little slip-cover.  This is a great way to use your fabric scraps, have your room décor all pulled together, and it doesn’t take very long to make.  You can do it!  Go Gingham!

Do you sew strange little covers for items?  What do you want to slip-cover?  Do you make up patterns like I do?

Tissue Box Slip-Cover pattern #1

Tissue Box Slip-Cover pattern #2A

Tissue Box Slip-Cover pattern #2B

Tissue Box Slip Cover pattern #3

Go Gingham related links:

Thanksgiving table-cloth made for our dining room table
Matching napkins for the table-cloth – made from an old skirt
How to make a waistband smaller without pins!
How to turn jeans into capris – easier than you think!
How to make skinny jeans from wide leg jeans – make your own “jeggings”
Want to learn to sew? Start here with easy cloth napkins
How to take apart a skirt – use your seam ripper on this project!
Sew your own homemade lunch sack
How to sew a Harry Potter cape complete with wand pocket

Sara

Sara, creator of Go Gingham, is passionate about cooking and feeding her family healthy, real food. She's a green enthusiast, too, who loves to grow food organically. Sara loves to travel - especially by trading houses. An avid runner, she can also be found chasing after her chickens in the backyard.

1 Comment


  1. This is a great solution for my tissue box in my bathroom – thanks for the idea! I’ll adapt the pattern to the upright cube style of box.
    My latest sewing project was a Nun’s Habit for the upcoming Grant High musical, “The Sound of Music.” I also sewed the snaps on the Von Trapp childrens’ sailor suit cuffs! Loved hearing the piano in the background!

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