Before You Buy a Sad Beige Slipcover, Try a Few Throws
A blanket statement.
Updated Sep 29, 2021 6:53 AM
There are plenty of good reasons to put a slipcover over a not-so-cute sofa. Chief among them, draping a tailored textile on everything beats dropping $1,000 on a new couch. The issue is finding one that works well—most of the time, the wrinkle-prone griege cloth you thought would act as a disguise ends up looking as bad as what you were trying to cover up in the first place.
So let’s backtrack: You don’t even have to leave the house to mend your sad sofa situation. Whether there’s a red-wine stain on the arm or the chintz upholstery makes your head spin, it’s nothing that a blanket (or two!) can’t fix. Simply grab a colored throw, a patterned coverlet, or a vintage handira and get to camouflaging. The tucking bit is optional; a classic stripe or bold fringe appears especially effortless when loosely cloaked over the cushions. Here’s how to get the look behind our favorite combinations:
In the case of a classic pattern like this, scale is everything. Flea Market Fab founder Jennifer Harrison sewed two blankets with different takes on stripes together: a chunkier, blocklike print and one made up of thin lines. The variety lends some soul to the neutral arrangement.
Try it: Pendleton’s ultrasoft cotton and polyester throw will help you reach peak cozy during the colder months. Pair it with an uneven motif, like this hand-loomed blanket made in Minas Gerais, Brazil.
Sean MacPherson and Rachelle Hruska’s fort–meets–surf shack in Montauk, New York, is overflowing with Moroccan pillows and extra-large blankets. They folded a couple of mismatched blue and green ones neatly around the seat cushions of their two daybeds. The whimsical motifs, running both horizontally and vertically, are nothing like the expected palm leaves or roses.
Try it: A vintage bright green kantha quilt made in India from recycled saris and bits of fabric will lend that eclectic, pieced-together look. Complement it with a light blue peony print or a quirky garden scene à la Josef Frank.
Fashion designer Keren Craig went heavy on texture for the sofa in her reimagined farmhouse in upstate New York, loading up the backrests with a shiny tasseled Moroccan handira (known as a wedding blanket). An embroidered burgundy textile exudes winter cabin vibes and gives the celebratory pieces a down-to-earth spin.
Try it: This dark crimson option from Atlantis Home is an identical match to the bottom blanket and doesn’t stop short on character (the piece takes three months to hand-make in Guatemala). Swathe the rest of the seat in an ornate wool Berber blanket featuring sequins and orange silk. Covering your (sofa’s) tracks never looked cooler.