Gift Inspiration Day Twenty Eight: Scrappy Pillows

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There’s one project that satisfies my creative style….I love to create something from scratch, without a pattern, and I don’t always have time to create something big.  Throw pillows are the perfect solution ~ pick a size, be as creative as you want, and then add the back.  Fast…easy….fun…and useful!  They are also a perfect gift for so many people on your list.

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I have two pillow tutorials for you today.  First, we’ll make the front of the “Two Squared” pillow in the top photo.  Then, we’ll make the front of the “Playground” pillow in the second photo.  Last, I’ll show you how to make an envelope pillow back.

Fabric:  “Two Squared” is made with PB & J by Basic Grey for Moda and “Playground” is made with Vintage Play by Suzn Quilts for Red Rooster.

{Please read all instructions before beginning.}

“Two Squared” Pillow

(144) 2″ squares for pillow front

(2) 18- 1/2″ x 13″  cuts of fabric for pillow back

Fusible Fleece:  (1) 18- 1/2″ x 18- 1/2,”  (2)  18- 1/2″ x 12- 1/2″

18″ square pillow insert

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On a work surface or design wall, arrange the 2″ squares in 12 rows of 12 squares.  Sew the squares into rows.  Press each row in opposite directions.  Sew the rows together.  With a warm, dry iron, fuse the fusible fleece to the back of the pillow front.

That’s it!  The Two Squared pillow front is complete.  We’ll work on the pillow back in a moment….first, let’s put together the Playground pillow front.

“Playground” Pillow

Supplies:

Fabric 1 (scene print):  cut (2) 4- 1/2″ x 18- 1/2″; cut (2) 1″ x 18- 1/2″ (in sample, we fussy cut the vehicle portion of the print)

Fabric 2 (Black Stripe):  cut (2) 1- 1/4″ x 18- 1/2″; (1) 1″ x 18- 1/2″; (12) 2″ squares

Fabric 3 (Red Diamond):  cut (2) 1″ x 18- 1/2″; (12) 2″ squares

Fabric 4 (Blue Puppies):  cut (12) 2″ squares

Fabric 5 (Green Flowers):   (12) 2″ squares

Fabric 6 (Red Puppies):  cut (2) 13″ x 18 1/2″

Fusible Fleece:  cut (1) 18 1/2″ x 18 1/2″; (2) 12 1/2″ x 18 1/2″

(1) 18″ square pillow form

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For the construction of the Playground pillow front, please refer to the photo above.   Lay the pieces out as described on your work surface.  Sew together each row of 2″ squares and then sew each row together, starting at the top.  Use a 1/4″ seam.  Below, I’m also including a row-by-row description.

Row A:  1- 1/4″ x 18- 1/2″ strip from Fabric 2 (black stripe)

Row B:  (12) 2″ squares from combination of Fabrics 2 (black stripe), 3 (red diamond), 4 (blue puppies), and 5 (green flowers)

Row C:  1″ x 18- 1/2″ fussy cut strip from Fabric 1 (scene print)

Row D:  (12) 2″ squares from combination of Fabrics 2 (black stripe), 3 (red diamond), 4 (blue puppies), and 5 (green flowers)

Row E:  1″ x 18- 1/2″ strip from Fabric 3 (red diamond)

Row F:  4- 1/2″ x 18- 1/2″ strip from scene print

Row G:  1″ x 18- 1/2″ strip from Fabric 2 (black stripe)

Row H:   4- 1/2″ x 18- 1/2″ strip from scene print

Row I:  1″ x 18 1/2″ strip from Fabric 3 (red diamond)

Row J:  (12) 2″ squares from combination of Fabrics 2 (black stripe), 3 (red diamond), 4 (blue puppies), and 5 (green flowers)

Row K:  1″ x 18- 1/2″ fussy cut strip from Fabric 1 (scene print)

Row L:  (12) 2″ squares from combination of Fabrics 2 (black stripe), 3 (red diamond), 4 (blue puppies), and 5 (green flowers)

Row M:  1- 1/4″ x 18 -1/2″ strip from Fabric 2 (black stripe)

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One note on pressing…I didn’t want the 1/2″ finished strips to be lost among the squares and larger strips, so I pressed both seams toward the skinny strip.  This causes that strip to appear to lay on top of the adjoining rows.  If you prefer to have them appear behind the adjoining rows, press the seams toward the pieced rows.

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In the photo above, both seams have been pressed toward the 1″ strip (1/2″ finished), completely hiding it on the back.

Once the 13 rows are joined together, the “Playground” pillow front is complete.

Pillow Envelope Back

Both pillow patterns call for (2) cuts of fabric 13″ x 18- 1/2″ and (2) cuts of fusible fleece 12- 1/2″ x 18- 1/2.”

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Using a hot, dry iron, fuse the fusible fleece to the wrong side of both pillow back pieces, matching one long side and both short sides.  The fusible fleece should be 1/2″ short on one long side.

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Fold over the 1/2″ of fabric and press.  Top stitch 3/8″ from the fold.  Repeat with second pillow back piece.

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Lay the pillow front right side up on your work surface.  Lay one of the back pieces right side down on top, lining up the 18- 1/2″ raw edge with the left side of the pillow front.

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Lay the second pillow back piece right side down on top of the pillow front, matching the 18- 1/2″ raw edge with the right side of the pillow front.  Pin well.

Using a 1/4″ seam, sew around entire piece.  Backstitch over the finished ends of the pillow back pieces to reinforce them.  Clip the corners and turn right side out.  Reach your hand inside and poke corners out to get a nice point.

Insert pillow form into pillow.

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Note on pillow back:  Envelope back pillows can often spread apart once the pillow is inserted, causing a gap.  I’ve added a couple of inches to the standard formula; this results in a perfect fit on the back of the pillow.

Formula for determining pillow back fabric based on size of pillow form:

Pillow Size + 8″ = x   and then   x/2= width of pillow back pieces

For our 18″ samples:  18″ + 8 = 26 / 2 = 13″

For the height of the pillow back pieces, add just 1/2″ to the size of the pillow form.  For our sample:  18″ + 1/2″ = 18- 1/2″

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One response to “Gift Inspiration Day Twenty Eight: Scrappy Pillows

  1. Pingback: Oops! New link for Day 28: Scrappy Pillows | Quilt Expressions Blog

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