Posts Tagged ‘pillow’

Completed Project: the hexie pillow

Hexie Pillow tutorial

Here it is! My pillow evolved from practicing and messing around with hexie shapes. (I posted yesterday how I cut my hexies.) Maybe it should be called “Molecule pillow” or “The Game Board pillow”, because that’s what I think of when I look at it. And, I’m not a gamer by any means, but I know that hex shapes are found in a lot of board games.

By the way, if you’ve played Settlers of Catan (or other similar games), then you know what I’m talking about. Check it out if you haven’t.

Hexie shapes for pillow

So… how are hexies put together anyway? I researched on Google for some answers. It all boiled down to : By hand, and carefully.

I found a few websites that show machine-pieced hexagons. Then I found a lot of information about paper piecing techniques, but I was looking for something that wouldn’t require cutting paper shapes for each fabric hex. Finally, I stumbled upon a tutorial for piecing hex shapes without paper. It worked for me, even if I didn’t print on my fabric. I’m pretty good at eyeballing distance and level lines.

I kept with neutral colors so I could gift the pillow to anyone – male, female, kid, adult. (In the middle of sewing the hexies together, I learned about some fabric printed with grass and rock graphics. Could be so awesome for a “Settlers of Catan” inspired project.)< Continue for what you need to make this pillow!

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Making A Memory Pillow

… or you could call it a Keepsake Pillow.

Handcrafted Keepsake Pillow

Word Cloud text on a pillow via Iron-On Transfer

Years ago, I wanted to make a memory quilt with prayers and well-wishes for my aunt and uncle. At the time, my uncle was battling an illness. Thankfully, he recovered – and then the project lay in my “to-do” pile. Fast forward to this year. We celebrated his 60th birthday. (Time has been very good to him. He stays active, keeps good company, and stays youthful with his 20-something-year-old kids.)

I resurrected the gift idea. You know, something thoughtful… but I downsized it to something manageable, like a pillow. A pillow cover, I could do; this time I added a zipper instead of doing an envelope enclosure.

Materials used: 20 in. square pillow form, fabric, iron-on sheets for an ink-jet printer, 22 in. all-purpose zipper

Materials used in the memory pillow project

Handcrafted Keepsake Pillow

Wish I could say I documented all the steps, but this was really a free-flow, stream of consciousness project. No definite measurements, but I could probably go back and figure it out. Should I?

Handcrafted Keepsake Pillow

The front and back of the pillow cover are giant quilt squares. 20-1/2” square, to be exact. Something so heartfelt about handwriting on fabric. And, then to pair it with printed text… Kinda wonky, kinda cool. I worked out our family and friends’ names on, and while I love color, I just ran out of colored ink for our printer. So black and white, it was.

Handcrafted Keepsake Pillow

Handcrafted Keepsake Pillow

(This zipper tutorial was really helpful.)

Handcrafted Keepsake Pillow

Hooray, it worked!

Handcrafted Keepsake Pillow

Handcrafted Keepsake Pillow

Handcrafted Keepsake Pillow

This is why you unzip before sewing

Keepsake Pillow makes a thoughtful gift

Another thoughtful project completed. On to the next one…

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Wordless Wednesday: Pieces of Me

My first sewing project (Age 12)

Other side of my apple pillow

Piano books from youth

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That Old Sweatshirt – A pillow tutorial

I get sentimental about things that other people would probably not even think twice about throwing away or donating. I have old ticket stubs, concert programs, newspaper clippings – those things I can put in a scrapbook. But I’ve been known to hoard be sentimental about clothes too, and only recently have I been purging all our closets. Sometimes there’s just that one article of clothing you want to keep. See this old collegiate sweatshirt…

Julie Tiu in 2002

…Became this pillow. (I know, after 10 years, right?)

An upcycled sweatshirt made into an envelope pillow – meaning, you can slip the cover on and off. Very easy for washing. Could be a cute gift for Valentine’s Day, too.

Recycle Your Favorite Sweatshirt (I didn't even attend this school. Got the sweatshirt because it had my last name!)

And here’s how I did it.

  1. Take your clean sweatshirt of choice and lay it on a table or on the floor.
  2. I cut the sleeves off first. Then set aside.
  3. Next cut along one of the side seams of your shirt and along the shoulder seams. This will open everything up. I did it this way to give the largest piece of continuous fabric.
  4. Cut off the bottom hem and collar (cuff material) also. At this point you may need to iron the shirt (highly recommended).

  5. You may need the sleeves for extra fabric. Cut off the cuffs and cut along either side of the seam.

    Sweatshirt sleeves cut open

  6. For a 16 x 16 pillow, you will need three pieces of fabric: (1) 16-1/2″ x 16-1/2″ for the front, (2) 12-1/2″ x 16-1/2″ for the back. (See my fancy sketch below.) I needed to use the extra sleeve material for one of the back panels. Just piece together if you need to.
  7. Try to center your focal point. I didn’t have too much choice – just went as high as I could.

  8. Prepare the back pieces first. Fold along the length (16-1/2″) and press 1/2″, then fold 1/2″ again, pin and edgestitch. Do this to the other piece. Press both pieces. Note: I found the zig-zag stitch easier to do with the stretchy sweatshirt material.

  9. Lay the front piece down, right side up. Next lay one of the back pieces, wrong side up, matching the raw edge with your front piece. The finished edge should be somewhere in the center area. Lay the other back piece with its raw edge along the other side of the front piece. Now the finished edges of your back pieces should be overlapping one another.
  10. Stitch around the perimeter with a 1/2″ allowance. Backstitch as you start and finish. When complete, remove and clip your corners, and turn rightside out.
  11. Stuff your pillowcase!

So here’s the thing – you can adjust the size of your fabric for any size pillow by just adding 1/2″ to your finished size. The back pieces take a little math.

16″ x 16″ pillow – cut 16-1/2″ x 16-1/2″ (front) and 16-1/2″ x 11-1/4″ (two pieces for the back)

14″ x 14″ – cut 14-1/2″ x 14-1/2″ (front) and 14-1/2″ x 9-1/4″ (two pieces for the back)

12″ x 16″ pillow – cut 12-1/2″ x 16-1/2(front) and 12-1/2″ x 11-1/4″ (two pieces for the back)

12″ x 12″ pillow – cut 12-1/2″ x 12-1/2(front) and 12-1/2″ x 7-1/4″ (two pieces for the back)

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Project Progress: The T-shirt Quilt

tee shirt quilt

Remember this?

Now it has a backside.

It would’ve been finished a long time ago except for three things.

One – I miscalculated the amount of solid color fabric (Kona Coal) needed and bought too little.

Two – I usually wait until the sales to buy fabric, but Kona Coal is one of the most popular color at our local store which means it’s almost always out. I didn’t attempt to “special order” it, or comb the online stores either. So I waited. And then waited some more. Finally got the end of a bolt last week.

Three – I could’ve just made the quilt back all easy-peasy, but no. I had to get all fancy and try my hand at some wonky squares, and it was difficult just figuring out the final layout. Oh, the amount of sketches I did, and piecing things together on the floor. I told myself, “Sheesh, it’s just a blanket… just finish it already.”

quilt back

And now, it’s done!

quilt back

Going BIG with my first quilt.

Now it’s time to make the quilt sandwich… I have the batting, and a ton of safety pins to put it all together. As much as machine-quilting looks fun, my machine would probably explode if I even attempted to freestyle quilt. So, I think this one will be hand-tied the good old-fashioned way. My daughter really wanted to help out, and I think it’s something we can do together. Any tips on what sort of thread to use? Next time I go to our fabric store, I’ll be asking the ladies at the counter… they’re just as excited that my project is moving along, too.

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Pillowcases – Another Project to Check Off

I finally finished these pillowcases, and taught myself how to do French seams from the Pretty quick pillowcase tutorial (& bonus french seam instructions) at Film in the Fridge. Think of the possibilities for the holidays?! I may be busy sewing for the next few months.

Notice anything? The design is upside down on the left hand pillow. Yes, lesson learned. Now I know what one of the tutorials meant by “good with non-directional prints”. I didn’t really stop to see how it was going to look. Abby didn’t seem to mind. She said, “That’s okay, Mom.” What a relief. Besides that, I turned the main fabric (apple print) 90 degrees contrary to what most of the tutorials showed. I don’t know if it matters. It’s just that if I didn’t, the apples would be sideways, and that’s not really what my daughter wanted.

Here’s a detail of the cuff from the inside. Nice and clean.

Basically, what you see right-side out is normal. What you see when the pillowcase is turned inside-out is this: the French seam. No raw edges.

Looking to add something to your list of projects? Here are some more sites that I scouted:

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