How to Make a Meditation Cushion: A Step-by-Step Guide

May 29, 2024

Finding time to relax and manage stress in our daily lives is crucial, and incorporating small moments of calm can make a significant difference. One technique to achieve this is through consistent meditation practices with proper support, such as using a meditation cushion. Let's explore the importance of daily relaxation, breathing exercises, and a DIY guide to making your own meditation cushion.

The Importance of Daily Relaxation

While many believe that relaxation means taking extended vacations, it turns out that daily relaxation is often more effective for managing stress. A doctor advised that instead of waiting for vacations, it's essential to relax a little every day. This can be as simple as not stressing over minor things and focusing on your breath.

Breathing Exercises

One practical method recommended is focusing on your breath for five minutes, five times a day. This technique can help manage daily stress. However, comfort plays a significant role in how effective these exercises are.

Creating a Comfortable Meditation Space

To enhance your meditation experience, having comfortable support is key. Meditation cushions, also known as zafus, are designed to provide the right amount of support for your body, facilitating better breathing and prolonged meditation sessions.

The Role of Meditation Cushions

"Cat w/Meditation Cushion" by jakemohan is licensed under CC BY 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit

Meditation cushions come in various sizes, heights, and firmness levels, making them a critical component of an effective breathing and meditation practice. Although they are available for purchase, many find joy and additional relaxation in making their own.

DIY Meditation Cushion Guide

Creating your meditation cushion can be a soothing project in itself. Here's a step-by-step guide to making your DIY zafu cushion.

Materials Needed

  • Durable fabric (e.g., upholstery fabric or quilting cotton)
  • Cutting instrument (scissors or rotary cutter)
  • Marking instrument and pins
  • Hand needle and thread
  • Sewing machine
  • String or selvage and a ruler
  • Stuffing materials: cotton batting, polyester fiberfill, fabric scraps, buckwheat hulls, or kapok

Types of Stuffing

  • Polyester Fiberfill: Easy to find and inexpensive.
  • Fabric Waste: Reuse old items like t-shirts.
  • Buckwheat Hulls: Dense and hold shape, traditional for zafu pillows.
  • Kapok: Environmentally friendly alternative.


"Meditation Cushions" by notasif is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit

Start by ironing your fabric to remove any wrinkles. Next, measure and cut the fabric according to the dimensions of your desired cushion size, ensuring to add seam allowances.

Cutting the Fabric

Cut a side panel to your desired height, adding seam allowances. Use multiple pieces sewn together if the fabric isn’t wide enough. Cut the top and bottom circles with a 12-14 inch diameter plus an additional half-inch seam allowance.

Creating Pleats

"watching Rah's video tutorial on how to make a 1-prim meditation cushion" by ▓▒░ TORLEY ░▒▓ is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit

Mark 6.5 inches from one edge, then 1.5 inches, then 3 inches, and repeat along the top edge. Transfer these marks to the bottom edge to ensure they line up straight. Pinch and pin the fabric to create pleats, making sure they face the same direction.

Assembling the Cushion

Top and Bottom to Side Panel: Start pinning the top piece to the middle of the side panel. Work outwards, pin in both directions leaving some slack to avoid stretching. Overlap and pin the short ends to create an opening for stuffing.

Sewing: Sew around with a half-inch seam allowance. Iron seams flat on both sides to avoid puckering.

Stuffing the Cushion

Mix various types of stuffing for a consistent feel. Note: It typically requires more stuffing than initially expected.

Closing the Cushion

Hand sew the opening using a simple knot and tidy stitches. Use a thimble for thick fabric.

Tips and Best Practices

  • Always iron fabric before cutting.
  • Use durable and non-slippery fabric.
  • Create a consistent look with pleats facing the same direction.
  • Ensure correct measurements for fabric cutting by using string and straight pins for accuracy.
  • Sew carefully and iron seams for a neat finish.

Variations and Uses

This method can be applied to various cushions like dog beds, floor cushions, or bench cushions. For an eco-friendly option, consider using kapok.

By following these steps, you can create a high-quality, durable cushion suitable for meditation or other purposes. Enjoy the satisfaction of completing your own meditation cushion and the added comfort it brings to your relaxation practice.

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