I’m sure there are a lot of other people in the same predicament as me right now. You live in a flat with hardly any storage space, it’s summer, you no longer need a bulky winter duvet* but you have nowhere to put it if it’s not on your bed. Sure you can stuff it in a bag and shove it in your wardrobe (with the other bags of stuff that sit in the bottom of the wardrobe crumpling your maxi dresses) or you could use one of those vacuum bags that last for about 10 minutes before sneaking up on you again like a big creepy marshmallow.

Folks, I have the answer – and it includes neon edging and cute dangly pompoms (obvs!) – the duvet pouf. Make an easy pouf-shaped cushion-cover and stuff the bastard duvet in there. It brightens up your lounge all summer, hides the creepy marshmallow and acts as the perfect foot stool/cat bed/toddler gym all at the same time.
Here’s how I did it: it’s a very simple pattern, basically a cylinder shape, and you could create it in any style depending on the fabric. I’ve gone, rather predictably, for a boho-mexican-raver style, but you could make one more subtle. You can stuff all sorts of things in there that you don’t need in summer, sleeping bags, parkas, Frozen DVDs. You get the picture.
2m of strong lining fabric that doesn’t have any stretch – I used calico
2m of decorative outer fabric
Some chalk to mark out the shapes
Some cardboard to help draw the circles
A thumb tack
Sewing pins
Any trimmings you want to add. I got mine from VV Rouleaux. They are the shiz.
A button


1. First decide on the size of your pouf. I like a large pouf (ooh-er) so mine is 50cm in diameter and 40cm tall. I can fit a king-size down duvet and a sleeping bag in it. For a regular double duvet, 40cm diameter and 30cm would be big enough.
Now, cast your mind back to your 7th grade maths homework and figure out the circumference of your circle. I’ll help you because I had to look it up too!
C = π d **  (huh?)
Basically, multiply the diameter of your circle by 3.14
For a 40cm wide pouf, you need 125.6cm of fabric around the side.
For a 50cm wide pouf, you need 157cm.image
2. Mark out your pieces in both the lining and the outer fabric with chalk.
1 full circle for the top
1 long rectangular piece. Mine was 157cm x 40cm
2 circles that have a 1/4 missing off the side. These will form the bottom. They need to overlap to form one full circle so they each need to cover more than half of the circle base.To draw a perfect circle, cut a piece of card (part of an old box will do) which is the length of your radius and about 1 inch thick with a V cut out of the end (see pic below). Using a thumbtack, pin it to the centre of your circle (do it on the floor or somewhere you can stick a pin into) then nestle the chalk into the V and spin it around like a compass to trace the circle.image

3. Cut out your pieces about an inch from the chalk line so your fabric is slightly larger than you need it to be.

4. Iron your lining fabric and your outer fabric on top of each other so the corresponding pieces are sitting flat and smoothly together.5. If you are going to add trimming around the top, now is the time to do it. Pin your trimming along the top edge of the long rectangle leaving at least an inch above it to sew it to the top circle. Sew along the trimmings.

6. Pin the long top edge of the rectangle around the edge of the top circle. Remember to do this inside-out and be careful to take note of the edge of the trimmings if you’ve done them. Sew around this edge to form a cylinder shape.

7. Now sew down the side seam to close off the walls of the pouf.

8. To make the bottom panel: Fold the straight edge of each part-circle to form a hem and sew.

9. Overlap the part-circle pieces to form one full circle and pin them together.


10. Pin the edge to the edge of the bottom of the pouf walls and sew around it. Now you can unpin the part circles and turn it inside out and your pouf is almost complete.

11. To finish it off, make a loop of fabric and sew it to the middle of the outer flap. Sew a button to the other flap so the duvet doesn’t try to bust out of the gap and the pouf will hold it’s shape.

12. Stuff in the duvet and put your feet up!




* Doona, to folks reading this in my native tongue

** Just a side note to Mrs Lee, my high school maths teacher: I hate to say it, but you were right, this is useful, but it’s also the first time I have had to use this since high school.

Photography & styling: Emma Scott-Child