Weekend project! If you do much sewing, particularly quilting, you know that an average ironing board is about the biggest annoyance in the craft room. It’s not wide enough. It’s got that stupid angled section that is useless when trying to iron yardage of fabric or a quilt top. It’s just a pain in the butt. So this weekend, I decided to ‘fix’ my ironing board by attaching a larger rectangular top to it.
The finished assembly is definitely much larger than I expected. Six feet is long! The options I had for precut boards at Lowes were 4 feet or 6 feet. Four feet would have been shorter than the existing ironing board, but 5 feet would have been better. The board hangs over the front and back of the ironing board about 10 inches on each side. However, I live in an apartment and don’t have workspace or power tools that make cutting a board like this easy, so I chose to just work with what I had. It is fairly stable however, as long as I don’t put too much weight on the ends.
One critical detail is to ensure that both the batting and the fabric cover is 100% cotton as it will handle the hottest heat settings on the iron.
Prep the board
I removed the cover from the ironing board and laid it on the pine board, making sure to keep it straight and centered. I used a pen to mark the holes in the ironing board where I planned to use screws to attach the ironing board to the new top. I chose twelve regularly spaced holes in the ironing board. This seems to have worked well as the board is pretty stable on top of the ironing board.
I then pre-drilled the holes with my power drill.
Prep the batting and cover
I cut the queen size batting (108″x90″) into 4 strips 27″x90″ in size. The 27″ width gave me the 20″ width of the board plus 3.5″ on each side to wrap around the board and staple. I also cut a 27″x90″ strip of the cotton fabric. Both the batting and the cotton fabric were too long; I trimmed them once I had laid them out with the board on top of them.
Upholstering the board
I spread the batting out on the floor and smoothed out all wrinkles before settling the board, carefully centered, on top. Using the staple gun, I wrapped the batting around the board and stapled it in place, stretching to make sure the batting was snug across the top of the board. The excess batting was trimmed close to the staple line.
The process was repeated with the cotton fabric, except instead of simply stretching it around and stapling I folded the raw edge under before stapling to give a clean finish making sure to hide the raw edges of the batting.
Attaching the ironing board
The ironing board was lined back up on the board based on the pre-drilled holes and attached with screws using the power drill. The washers are used because the holes in the ironing board are larger than the screws.
- Large board; I used a pine “Appearance Board” purchased at Lowes. It’s 20 inches wide by 6 feet long, 3/4 inch thick.
- Cotton quilt batting; I bought a package with a queen size piece of batting.
- Cotton fabric; I got 2 1/2 yards of a decorator weight fabric.
- Manual staple gun and staples
- Electric drill, screws, and washers