Pillow Making Tutorial: Easy & Fast

Monday, March 3, 2014



Get ready people for the quickest and easiest total transformation of your couch... under 10 minutes per pillow!!

The roads are covered with ice and snow here in Oklahoma and it's my favorite kind of day! SNOW DAY! I know that some parents cringe at the idea of a snow day, but I love them. They are extra days in the week to stay home with no stress to go out and be productive... which makes me be super productive inside the house and recharge with the kids.

So what to do today??? Give this bare couch some love and make it pretty pretty.



This couch has been bare for the last two houses... mostly because even when I have tried to put store bought pillows on it, they end up in a fort or in the floor, or I just can't find the right fabric or right size pillow. I uncovered my stash of fabrics and many pillow forms and old pillows... aha! I decided to make my own pillows from my current stash of fabric and pillows.

First I put the pillow forms on the couch and moved them around until I was happy with the heights and arrangements. I think that it is good to have a variety of shapes and sizes for your pillows. I ended up with two larger 20x20, two 16x16, three 16x20 and one cute 10x16.



For your fabrics... Do a feel test on the fabrics and really think about how they will feel on your couch or chair. I like using decorator weights or even duck cloth for my pillows... but not all decorator weight fabrics are created equally. Some are very stiff and others make you want to cuddle up and watch a movie. Normal quilting cotton is just fine, too. I used duck cloth, burlap, quilting cotton and decorator fabric for this project. There are no rules, just what makes your heart happy.

When picking your fabrics, you want to stick to probably three main patterns and then add in one or two speciality or bolder fabrics. I used a variety of large and small prints and textures with three main patterns and two special fabrics - coffee bean burlap sack and a yellow chevron personalized pillow.

The burlap bags have a great story. There is a sweet little store in town. The owners go to estate sales and garage sales and buy the odd and cool things that they find and add it to their boutique shop that carries clothing and cowboy boots and the yummiest smelling candles. A girlfriend and I were in there last week and were walking out with our treasures, when I looked up and gasped at the coffee burlap sacs hanging on the wall with the coolest modern looking fonts and the sign... ohh the sign said only $4 each! So I brought home two of course and now I have a really cool pillow and more projects in mind.





Determine what fabric will go on each pillow form. My first step was to cut out the fabric for all of the pillows.  I have seen instructions for envelope type pillow covers on many blogs and websites, but thought that Erin at Lovesome blog had the best explanation, so I am sharing some of her instructions in mine.
Your cutting instructions are in the graphic above. You can switch the height and width instructions depending on the shape of your pillow or based on your personal style. Create a hem line by laying your fabric good side down and folding over the short ends about a 1/2 inch, ironing, and pinning with your stick pins as shown in the graphic above. Then, sew both of the short ends with a straight stitch and your choice of stitch length. 


Next, lay the fabric down with the good side facing you. You will want to iron the fabric if it has any wrinkles at this point.  Lay the pillow form on the fabric so that the right side of the fabric is facing the pillow.
Fold the hemmed edges toward the center of the pillow, pulling the fabric snug around the pillow. This is what makes the envelope for your pillow. 
Line up the folded pieces and pin the top of the pillow. Make sure your pins are close to the pillow to provide a snug fit. I pinned through all layers of the top of the pillowcase using three pins, one center and left and right. On the bottom of the pillowcase, I only pinned through the top layer of fabric so I could remove the pillow form. This gave me the bottom reference for sewing and held the flaps together. Now, gently remove the pillow form. Sometimes the fabric wiggles a little, but as soon as you get the pillow form out you can straighten the fabric back up. 

Once you get the pillow form out, lay your fabric flat and make sure that everything is lined up perfectly and pretty. You will need to place two more pins on the bottom through all layers as your guide for sewing. 
Now, the final and easiest step. Sew a straight hem on the top and bottom (what were once the long edges). Make sure that you trim all of your strings and - if you want to - you can trim the corners before turning it right-side-out to make the finished pillowcase prettier when you poke out the corners. Turn the pillowcase right-side-out and poke out your corners to make them look crisp. Slide your pillow form inside the case and you are all done. 

Read through these instructions a few times and give yourself some time on the first one... remember, seam rippers were made for a reason and sewing machines will make you say unladylike words... it's just a pillow... you can start over and no one will know. 

This will be the back of your pillow


and ta-da! All finished :) Yes the cat posed so sweetly for me. She is otherwise hormonal and crazy! Now to find the perfect gray rug for the living room... I thought I had the perfect one, but it ended up in the dining room... so back to the search. 




Coming Soon... State Appliqué Pillow Tutorial. We have another snow day tomorrow! woo-hoo




40 comments:

  1. Great fabric choices! Nice to see you on here again.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know right?!!, it's like I've been under a rock... or 300 boxes with a baby. haha Thank you for saying hi Amy!

      Delete
  2. You did an amazing job! I love the different patterns and colors. It definitely transforms your couch. The Oklahoma pillow is adorable!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Katie! I love the Oklahoma pillow too! It's amazing what some pretty patterns and colors can do

      Delete
  3. Love it! You are really coming along on your house! I had so much fun peeking through your Pinterest board last week and hope it was good for you!

    Also, we have a fun link party tonight at 6:00 our time...I would be thrilled if you linked up! http://onekriegerchick.com/

    Have a Happy Week!
    ~Ariean

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Ariean and thank you so much for the feature!! A whole blog post was just amazing and so insanely sweet of you. So I had to get off my toosh and get some things done :) I would love to link up. Thank you again.

      Delete
  4. Love the different patterns and the burlap bag pillow! I can't wait to see what you do with the other one. Thanks for sharing at The Makers!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for stopping by :) and for the great party.

      Delete
  5. love the color and patterns they bring in. i have a many pillow covered sofa and kitty helpers, too. so cute!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. The kitties always add a little extra class to the pictures

      Delete
  6. Love the fabrics and your tutorial is great! Thanks for linking up at The Makers. So glad to have you!
    Corey @ TinySidekick.com

    ReplyDelete
  7. I LOVE me a good throw pillow! I think they make a room look so cozy. Happy Spring!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Your pillow make your house look like a home! You are quit the talented lady! Looking forward to the state applique tut!!
    :)
    xx Crystelle
    Crystelle Boutique

    ReplyDelete
  9. These are just absolutely amazing! I love them all...it's so hard to choose a favorite. The burlap coffee sack one is just so special! I can't believe that only set you back $4! Thank you so much for linking up at Thursday STYLE :) Hope you are having a fabulous weekend!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much Angela. Love you blog.

      Delete
  10. Thank you so much for sharing your beautiful project on The Inspiration Board at homework. You were featured in the spotlight!
    Have a wonderful weekend.
    carolyn ~ homework

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much Carolyn! Have a wonderful weekend too :)

      Delete
  11. Super cute pillows! Nice job, and thanks for linking up to the Do Tell Tuesday party. Hope to see you again tonight!

    ReplyDelete
  12. I can't wait to get a sewing machine so I can come back to this post! gorg!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's super easy and a great starter project!

      Delete
  13. Hi Michelle! I'm new to your blog. It's great! I love your pillows - the fabrics are beautiful and hey only 10 minutes - can't beat that! Thanks so much for sharing your creativity at The Creative Connection! xo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Chelsea thank you for stopping to visit! I love finding other military spouse blogs!

      Delete
  14. The pops of color from the pillows really made a big difference in the space! Great tutorial!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Beautiful job. Nice to see you at Thursday STYLE!

    ReplyDelete
  16. I really love how you mixed your fabrics! I tend to have my pillows too matchy matchy sometimes. Think I'll try to switch them out now. :) Thanks for bringing your creativity to our Get Your DIY on party! Next month's theme is Thinking Spring! XO

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have the same problem Christy... I always have two of this and two of that and then end up not liking any of it. So I'm trying to go more custom and outside of my normal box.

      Delete
  17. I wanted to let you know that I am featuring these gorgeous pillows at our Link it or Lump it party tomorrow. Be sure to grab a feature button, too!

    http://www.delineateyourdwelling.com/2014/03/link-it-or-lump-it-party-no-30.html

    ReplyDelete
  18. Love this so much, you're being featured on The DIY'ers today! http://homecomingmn.blogspot.com/2014/03/the-diyers-54.html

    ReplyDelete
  19. I don't have a sewing machine but I hope to one of these days. So I'm pinning your post because it seems so easy to follow!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They are super simple and you will love your new pillows.

      Delete

I love to receive comments from my readers! I promise to answer as quickly as possible. Thank you for stopping by.

Blog Design by Nudge Media Design | Powered by Blogger