OK so apparently it'd be a good idea to underline the patch worked pieces with a solid fabric in order to avoid the seams straining open across seat cushions etc.
This is sensible but frankly a pain. I am digesting the advice lol.
I don't want to use the current covers as a base, because I want them available if it all goes wrong and I want to put it back.
I am now collecting practical directions and so share them here for anyone else to make use of.
1. I dug out a pattern I have Simplicity House 8404 which is patterns for the cushions, table cloth etc, and instructions for the slipcovers. This gives advice that you need HUGE yardage for making your slipcovers and I fear they may well be right.
2. I have ordered a used copy from Amazon of Sunset's "Slipcovers and Bedspreads" as recommended by Bunny on SG.
3. I read some stuff online about making your own slipcovers.
there are others too.
I will try and document my process as I go along in order to help others out there.
I will keep you posted!
Based on the advice in SlipCoversPartOne, I would need something like 20 metres of upholstery fabric to make slipcovers for just the sofa. Argh! A chair takes nearly as much, maybe something like 16 metres.
This is a SERIOUS undertaking and I'm slightly intimidated by it now.
An alternative would be to buy myself a big pack of dust sheets from a DIY store (unbleached cotton), and make the slipcovers entirely from them. I could then gain my contrast by making interesting cushions which I could change on a regular basis.
At Christmas I could whip myself up some red felt cushions, in spring something with a fresh green, in summer cool blue and in autumn rich fiery pumpkin orange.
Meanwhile I noticed the local Christmas faye is on in 4 weeks time and I'd quite like to contribute some home sewn items to help raise funds. We may have a diversion for a few weeks into Christmas craft/gift sewing.