Make Your Own RV Seat Covers
If well taken care of, a motorhome can last for many years. In fact, there are a number of motorhomes from several decades ago that are still out on the road today.
The only problem with older motorhomes is the interiors become worn and dated over time. And one part of the camper that is sure to become worn out at some point is the seat covers.
Any upholstery in your motorhome is going to need to be recovered after awhile. Fortunately, reupholstering your seats on your own is totally doable. Not only that, even if you’d rather skip completely reupholstering, there are still ways to re-cover your motorhome seats fairly easily.
In this article, we will discuss how to make motorhome seat covers so you can get your camper interior looking clean, well-maintained, and up-to-date in no time.
How to reupholster motorhome captain’s seats
Let’s dive in and discuss the possibility of completely reupholstering your motorhome captain’s seats. We’ll admit, this is a much bigger job than simply re-covering the chairs. But the end result is fabulous, so if you’re up for the extra work, it might be worth considering.
To reupholster your motorhome seats yourself, you will need:
- New fabric
- Marker pen
- Seam ripper
- Straight pins
- Staple gun
- Upholstery thread
- Sewing machine
- Staple remover
Start by removing the old fabric by unzipping or pulling out seams with a seam ripper. You may also have to pull out staples in this process. Try not to rip the fabric, but go ahead and take apart all the seams. The end result should be a few different pieces of fabric separated at the seams.
With a marker pen, trace each piece of the old fabric on the back of new fabric. Cut the new pieces out. Pin these pieces together and sew them using the upholstery thread and a heavy-duty sewing machine, leaving one or more seams open to allow the fabric to be placed on the chair. Some people like to add a zipper to the open seam to make removing the fabric easier in the future.
Put the new cover over the chair, sew up remaining seams by hand, and staple the cover in place around the bottom and wherever else staples are necessary.
This video is a great visual guide for those reupholstering their RV seats:
How to make motorhome seat covers for the dinette
The dinette seats are likely the first cushions in your RV that will need to be re-covered. After all, these are the seats that are subject to the most spills and crumbs. Fortunately, dinette seats are also some of the easiest seats to re-cover.
Most RV dinette seat cushions are rectangular in shape, meaning anyone who can sew a straight seam should be able to make cases for their cushions.
To do this, simply measure the length and width of the cushion and cut two pieces of fabric to fit, making sure to leave a seam allowance. Next, measure the side panels, cutting pieces of fabric to match each of the four sides. Again, leave room for a seam.
Pin and sew the fabric pieces together with the fronts of the fabric pieces facing in, leaving one end of the cover open. Slip the cover onto the cushion and sew the last panel on by hand. Alternatively, you might choose to add a zipper or snaps to the final panel, sew it on before the cover is put on the cushion, and then zip or snap it shut.
Can’t sew? It’s also possible to cover your own dinette seats by placing a thin piece of wood on the backside of the cushion, wrapping fabric around the foam, and stapling the fabric into place.
Creating a DIY Couch Slipcover
What about a motorhome couch? Couches are a bit trickier to cover than dinette seats, but it is still totally doable. If you’re really brave, you might choose to reupholster the couch in the same way captain’s chairs can be reupholstered. However, it’s also possible to make a slipcover for your couch.
To make a custom cover, you will need to measure each section of your couch, sewing covers for each cushion as you would for a dinette seat cover, and then create a big cover for the couch frame. This video explains this quite well.
All that said, if you’d rather not put in all that effort, there are other options. This no-sew method is a great way to cover your couch with minimal effort:
We’ve also seen people use full-size sheets on their jackknife sofas. Simply put the sheet on with the couch in bed mode, fold the couch up into couch mode, and tuck a pool noodle in the crack between the seat cushion and backrest to hold the sheet in place. You could also use sheet suspenders to keep the sheet from moving around.
The Best RV Seat Covers You Can Buy
Of course, there is also the option of purchasing a premade slipcover for any one of your RV seats. This might cost a little more, but it is definitely easier and gets the job done quickly.
We especially love these affordable covers for dinette seats and jackknife sofas. They come in a variety of colors, they wash really well, and they stretch very nicely over almost any rectangular cushion out there. We have found that the aforementioned sheet suspenders are needed to hold them in place in some cases, but those are easy enough to buy and use.
Captain’s chair covers such as these tend to do a great job covering the cab seats in a motorhome. These can be found in pretty much any store that sells auto parts, but there is much more variety available if you buy online.
Lastly, it’s possible to find a well-made slipcover for just about any size couch. We recommend measuring your couch before you go to buy a cover and finding one that is stretchy in order to ensure a good, snug fit.
Now you know how to make motorhome seat covers! As you can see, there are plenty of ways to cover your motorhome seats, and not all of them are difficult or expensive. Which one will you choose for your home-on-wheels?
RVers looking for valuable how-to information have learned to go to the experts. Forums such as iRV2.com and blog sites like RV LIFE, Do It Yourself RV, and Camper Report provide all the information you need to enjoy your RV. You’ll also find brand-specific information on additional forums like Air Forums, Forest River Forums, and Jayco Owners Forum.