DIY Idea: The Patched and Mended Sofa

Over the past few years we’ve seen a (welcome) resurgence in mending: taking a needle and thread to socks, sweaters, and kitchen linens as needed to help them last (and avoid buying new). It’s an old-fashioned solution that’s returned, in part, as an inch-by-inch, stitch-by-stitch holdfast against fast fashion and disposable culture.

But patching isn’t just for pockets. Just one of the many resourceful and eclectic ideas we love in an architect couple’s NYC townhouse we recently profiled (see “Silly, Thrifty, and Not Too Serious”: Architects Maria Berman and Brad Horn at Home in Harlem): couch cushions repaired with mismatched patches that only add to the charm.

Take a look:

architect couple maria berman and brad horn noticed the couch cushions in their 9
Above: Architect couple Maria Berman and Brad Horn noticed the couch cushions in their Harlem townhouse were wearing thin—one of them in particular, thanks to Sandor, their cat, who has claimed it as his perch. Instead of draping it in a finicky slipcover—or getting rid of what was otherwise a perfectly good couch—the couple took the patch approach. Photograph by Greta Rybus from “Silly, Thrifty, and Not Too Serious”: Architects Maria Berman and Brad Horn at Home in Harlem.

Maria emailed us with info: “The fabric was discontinued, and it seemed wasteful to recover the entire couch because of one cushion. I’ve embraced the art of mending to create these patched repairs. They’re silly and not too serious but also cheerful and thrifty”—and doable, we might add, for even a beginning stitcher. All you need is a fabric scrap or two.

Have you embraced mending couch cushions (or other items around the house)? Let us know in the comments.

And for more DIY ideas from projects we love, see:

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