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Making a Pillow With Fabric Scraps

Category Sewing
Here is a pretty pillow project perfect for your stash of scrap fabric. This is a guide about making a pillow with fabric scraps.
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March 11, 2013

I bought a bunch of small pieces of fabric that I liked, but hadn't decided how to use them. I needed a lumbar pillow and found them to be too expensive so I figured making my own would be a great way to use my fabric pieces.

Total Time: 1.5 hours

Supplies:

  • fabrics of choice
  • pillow form
  • thread
  • sewing machine
  • scissors
  • pins
  • tape measure

Steps:

  1. Measure your pillow form to determine how long the fabric strips need to be, don't forget to add seam allowances to the length. (My pillow was 12 x 22 in. so with seam allowances my strips were 13 in., some were longer so after sewing them I trimmed them all to the same length.)
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  3. Determine how wide you want the strips to be. Make sure that you account for seam allowances on each piece and that sewn together they will equal the width of the pillow, with end seams. (My strips varied between 1-3 inches in width.) You can lay them out, prior to sewing to get a feel for how they will look.
  4. Cut the strips, then pin them together. Sew each seam, removing pins as you go.
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  6. Once all of your seams are sewn, press your pillow front with an iron. Then trim off any excess, so that all the edges are even.
  7. The back is made with two pieces of fabric that overlap to conceal the opening. First you need to determine how much overlap there will be. I recommend an overlap of at least 2 inches. Cut the two pieces the height of the pillow and make sure that their total length, including the overlap, equals the width of the pillow. (For my pillow, one piece was 18 1/2 x 13 in. and the other was 10 1/2 x 13 in. That made for finished pieces that were 17 x 13 in. and 9 x 13 in.)
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  9. For the two back pieces you will fold the opening edge under 1/2 in. then again another 1/2 in. and sew for a finished edge.
  10. Now pin the back pieces at the ends, to the pillow front (right sides together) and sew. I recommend stitching the seams twice for strength.
  11. Now wrap the case around the pillow form to make sure your overlapping is correct for a snug fit once sewn. Pin at the corners and remove the pillow form.
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  13. Finish pinning the back and front together and sew, again I recommend double stitching the seam.
  14. Turn the pillow case right side out and press with an iron. Now you are ready to put the pillow form inside.
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Comment Was this helpful? 4

By 3 found this helpful
April 15, 2013

I love to make paper pieced projects. I took a brief break from a quilt to make this pillow cover for the DH's birthday. I had made my carrot book page weight and that inspired me to look for some veggie blocks.

Total Time: Several hours while watching TV.

Supplies:

  • fabric scrapes in various colors
  • sewing machine
  • thread
  • tracing paper
  • ruler
  • pencil
  • tape measure
  • rotary cutter and mat
  • scissors
  • 12 x 16 inch pillow form (or size of your choice)

Steps:

I decided on the blocks that I wanted to use and completed as many of each type to cover the area needed for the pillow cover. I had to add filler blocks and a border to adjust for the necessary finished size.

  1. Make your blocks using paper piecing techniques. Instructions for Paper Pieced Quilt Block I used blocks from a book I owned and one found on the net. See footer for sources.
  2. Once the blocks were sewn I then played around with the layout until I found one that I liked. In the final cover I moved the house and gnome blocks to the upper left hand corner; them seemed to be better suited to that location for the final overall effect.
  3. Once the blocks were completed I did measurements to determine the width of the sashing in between the individual blocks. Some of it was done with a single color and other areas were filled with strips made by sewing several pieces of fabric together to get somewhat of a garden row effect. I also added some flowery fabric to simulate a flower patch in the garden.
  4. I sewed all of the pieces together continuing to check my measurements. As to be expected, for me at least, there was also some ripping and resewing when I didn't like how things looked.
  5. Once all of the individual blocks were sewn together, I measured the large block and cut a border to finish the project's top. I chose a floral brown for a bit of a path look.
  6. Next I measured and cut the fabric for the back of the pillow cover, to create an envelope style opening.
  7. Finally I inserted the pillow form and it was done. I am overall pleased with the outcome. Of course I would do some things differently next time. :)

Sources for the quilt blocks:

Veggie and house blocks are from: Paper Piecing Picnic - Fun Filled Projects for Every Quilter, from the editors and contributors of Quilter's Newsletter Magazine and Quiltmaker Magazine, copywrite 2001 Primedia Special Interest Publications. These particular blocks were designed by Theresa Elsinger.

The gnome block is from a website: http://artisania.wordpress.com. The design is by Sonja Callaghan and is free on the site, for personal use.

Comment Was this helpful? 3

By 1 found this helpful
September 3, 2014

I wanted to make my own version of a craft posted here on Thriftyfun back in 2009.

CommentPin It! Was this helpful? 1
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Videos

March 15, 20131 found this helpful

Make a cute pillow case with scrap fabric. This case has an envelope opening. View the full project here: Scrap Pillow With Envelope Opening

Comment Was this helpful? 1
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