Updated: Feb 7
Here's a tutorial for the easiest no-frill tissue box cover you'll ever find. Totally customisable, totally beginner-friendly.
I'll admit, I am one of those people who do not see the point of tissue box covers. In our household, tissue boxes are constantly (often urgently) grabbed and tossed around to where they are needed, and I don't see how donning them with covers will help anything, especially when tissue box covers seem to always be so frilly and fiddly to sew and put on.
That explains why I had always refused to sew one although the husband had repeatedly suggested it. Until finally, as I needed ideas for my "Five Simple Things to Sew for Chinese New Year", I decided to give the tissue box cover a chance and see if I could design one that is both functional (read: won't come off when tossing) and really, really simple to sew - as in the faster I can complete it and the lesser materials it uses, the better.
Turns out I could.
Bring on the Easy-Peasy Reversible Tissue Box Cover.
Honestly, I'm not sure if I even need to write this tutorial. But for the benefit of those who are true-blue beginner sewers, here's the step-by-step tutorial on how to make your own Easy-Peasy Reversible Tissue Box Cover.
The end product is reversible, so you will need two different fabrics that you like as tissue box covers. Or your could use the same fabric on both sides, in which case, it would be missing the point of being reversible, but your project - your choice.
For the ties, you will need 60 cm of material such as ribbons, lace, string, cotton tapes, etc. You can also make your own ties using bias tapes.
Whatever fabric you choose, make sure they are not "slippery" materials like satin or organza. In fact, the coarser the fabric, the better. This is because the only thing stopping the tissue box from slipping off the cover is the friction between the box and the cover. In other words, you need fabrics that will grip well onto the tissue box. Most woven cotton fabrics including quilting cottons and canvas will work great.
This being one of the projects in my series "Five Simple Things to Sew for Chinese New Year", I have chosen a traditional Chinese indigo-dyed fabric, a bright red floral fabric, and some red bias binding tapes for the ties.
My Chosen Fabrics
STEP 1: MEASURE TISSUE BOX
The design of this tissue box cover is so versatile, it can fit almost any brand of tissue box. But since you need a measurement to start the project, go ahead and measure the tissue box that you use most often.
You will need the following measurements:
STEP 2: CUT FABRICS
From your two chosen fabrics, cut out two rectangles (one from each fabric) with the following dimensions:
A = Length + 2 cm
B = [2 × (Height + Width)] - 4 cm + 2 cm
Note: "+2 cm" because seam allowance 1 cm all around.
STEP 3: PREPARE TIES
Cut 4 strips of 15 cm length each from your ties material. Finish one raw edge of each strip, if there are raw edges (or your could leave them unfinished if you like that raw look for your final product).
STEP 4: ASSEMBLE FOR SEWING
Place fabrics right side together and pin in place. Mark 3 cm away from the long edge on both sides.
Slip 14 cm of each tie strip between the fabrics where marked, leaving 1 cm protruding. Pin them in place.
STEP 5: SEW & LEAVE OPENING FOR TURNING
Sew around the edges with 1 cm seam allowance, leaving an opening of about 15 cm for turning. Backstitch several times over the ties for strength.
STEP 5: SNIP CORNERS, TURN INSIDE OUT, AND CLOSE OPENING
Snip the 4 corners and turn the whole thing inside out. Press to ensure all sides are thoroughly "pushed out" from inside to create clean edges, and that the seam allowances along the opening are straightly folded inside. Then, top stitch all around very near the edges to close the opening as well as for a finished look.
Tissue Box Cover on Display