Monday, November 19, 2012

Pillow Tutorial

As the holidays approach it is time to think about decorating the house. I have scaled back what I used to do when the kids were little. Not everything I own comes out any more, not enough time or energy to get it all out and put it all back.
This year I decided to make some new "holiday" covers for my pillows in the family room. I think the red fabric is not too Christmasy so I can keep them out all winter for a little spark during those dark months.

I am using a red and white polka dot for the back.

My pillow form is 18" square. I cut my fabric 20" x 20".

Now dig through your not so favorite fabric to use as a backing for the front of the pillow. It is not going to show so it does not matter what you use. My only caution is that if you are using a light fabric for the cover use a light for the scrap so it does not shadow through.

Layer your scrap fabric (it does not matter what side you use), batting and cover fabric the same way as you would any quilt. Press it really good to make sure all wrinkles are out and it even sticks the layers all together so you don't need to baste it. You can if you want........

Next quilt the top. I free motioned in a meandering pattern as I know there will be kids all over these and this will hold up well.

Next trim the quilted cover down to 19" x 19".

For the back cut 2 pieces of your backing fabric 13 1/2 x 19. On the long edge (19") press a 1/4" seam allowance, do it again to hide all those raw edges. Sew it down along the pressed edge.

Place the quilted cover right side up, put one of the back pieces down with the sewn edge to the middle, right sides together.

Now place the other side down, as you can see they overlap.

It will look like this. Pin these together.

Sew all the way around using a 1/2" seam allowance, it is stronger than a 1/4" especially if you want to wash it. As you come to the parts that overlap be sure to reinforce it by back stitiching at least 3 times. It will get a lot of stress putting the pillows in and out.

Trim the corners and pull out through the opening. Push out the corners using a chop stick or other tool.

There you go! It did not take a long time to make, maybe a half hour or so. One down 3 more to go!
Have fun and be sure to email if you have a question.



  1. cute pillow and great tutorial!

  2. Nice tutorial! Love that fabric you are using too.

  3. Great tutorial! I like the overlap back, but the way I was shown had you double each of those pieces (fold them in half instead of doing the 1/4" hem) and is used so much fabric for a pillow.
    Now I can whip up some pillows and be able to change the cover out.
    I love the red you used for the front. (I like the dots too).
    Happy stitching.

  4. What a great idea to add some festive colour and brighten up winter. Thanks for the great tutorial too, I know it will come in handy the next time I make cushions.

  5. A very helpful tutorial for those who need to make cushion covers!

  6. Love the pillow, although we call them cushions here as pillows are the ones we use for sleeping, lol. I need a good basic tutorial to refer to as I recently bought some fabric to make some so thanks so much.

  7. very nice pillows. that bracelet wil be a nice gift. joanne


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