I have a little Australian Grey Cockatiel named Bird. He is the cute guy with the yellow head that you see in a photo off to the side of my post.
Bird has had a few cage covers in the past including old sheets and fabric that was intended to be sewn into a proper cover, but never was. Exhibit A (piece of fabric):
I took a trip to the store recently in search of 2 fabulous fabrics, one for the lining and one for the shell (that would match the new drapes). I couldn’t find anything with little birds on it for the lining, but I did find a cute fabric with bird houses. It would have to do. For the shell I picked out a pale green with an off-white floral pattern. Why line this piece? Because I was using a lightweight cotton-poplin and wanted to make sure there were two layers to avoid too much light coming through the cover.
I started by drawing a rough sketch of the cage and taking some basic measurements. I wanted to create something fitted that would keep him covered at night, but that could also be folded back and left on the cage during the day (especially in the Fall/Winter to help avoid drafts and give him a nice shady corner for napping).
I laid the fabric out and drew the back piece to the shape of the cage, using the measurements I took as a guide and factoring in seam allowance. Next I marked off the two side panels. I cut all three of these pieces out (both fabrics at once for consistency and efficiency).
Finally I needed to create the two front flaps. I took my back piece, folded it in half, marked the fabric and cut it out. Then I adjusted the fold to be slightly larger than half and cut out a second piece. Why slightly wider for the second flap? So there would be an overlap and give a nice closure to the piece.
I decided the easiest way to do this would be to sew the lining together, then the shell together, then to sew the two pieces together.
Lining: The two sides were attached to the back piece (try on cage for fit before adding the remaining pieces – looking good!), then the two front flaps were sewn on. Shell: Repeat steps from the lining assembly.
When I had sewn the two sets of five pieces together, I ironed flat all of my seams. Then I turned the shell right-side-out and placed it over the lining piece making sure the seams were aligned.
I decided that I wanted to see stitching on the bottom hem plus on the front flap openings. Once I had the two pieces pinned together I sewed first the flaps, then the bottom hem.
The result turned out great! Perfectly fitted – and this cover is reversible! (Though I do prefer the bird houses as a lining.)
The front flaps close with no gaping as the one piece is about 1″ wider so it can be tucked under the regular-size flap.
Check Bird out all relaxed and fluffed up, enjoying his new decor.
What I’m listening to as I write this post: Patsy Cline