Thursday, January 26, 2012

Where would you like to sit?

As a wedding gift, 8 years ago, we were given 2 nice fluffy floor pillows. One was a cream color, the other green. We like them well enough, the problem is though, with a 3 year old and 2 dogs that sit on anything you throw on the floor, the pillows were starting to look dirty. Realizing that I could not possibly wash the entire pillow, I tossed both pillows in the spare bedroom and there they sat for a while.

The other day, Cohen and I stopped off at Hancock Fabrics to get a seam ripper and I saw this really cute fabric on clearance. I decided that I wanted to recover those pillows!

This is what the pillow looked like before I recovered it.

The first thing I did was measure and measure and then measure again. I'm famous for messing up my sewing projects by cutting the fabric all wrong.

After I had everything measured, I laid out my fabric on my board (I don't know the technical term for this board, but if you do lots of sewing you need one, or something similar. It's basically a huge piece of cardboard with marking on it for inches, yards, and bias lines). This is the material I used for the back and sides of the pillow. It is a bit sturdier than the other material.

This is a shot of where I'm measuring to make sure the sides match the pillow back. These pillows will actually have 6 sides.

Closeup of the material and the board.

Next, I cut the material for the front of the pillow. As you can see, it has a much larger pattern to it. I wanted that big circle piece to be in the center of the front of the pillow, so I had to do some creative cutting. I basically mangled this piece of fabric so bad that I don't know if I will be able to use the scraps for anything ever again.

Instead of having to measure, align the circle, measure, align, then cut...I just used that first piece as a pattern for my second piece. I pinned the center together and cut around the outside. Worked out really well.

I wanted the pillows to open in the back (sort of like an envelope or the shams on my bed), so that I could take the covers off and wash them if they got dirty. This is the reason for the hem (for those that don't sew, you wouldn't typically hem a pillow).

I am terrible at making straight lines. This was the piece of the opening that would go under the other piece, so I don't think anyone will actually see my terrible sewing job. I posted this picture on Facebook, and got a few suggestions on how to fix the problem. I moved my machine to a stable surface and added a piece of painters tape as a guide. Things got much prettier after that.

After I finished the hem on the opening of the back of the pillow, I sewed the sides to the back.

And then I got tired of taking pictures. Ha! I have no idea what really happened, but I don't have any pictures of the cover without a pillow in it.

I'll just sum it up to say, after the sides and back are attached, you get to sew the front to the sides. After all the sides/front/back are attached, you may sew up the corners.

Here is the finished product. To get an idea of how big this is, the front measures about 25 inches across. In this picture you can see that I got that circle on the center of the front.

Here are the two pillows together. If you look really closely, you can see the opening at the top of the pillow on the bottom. That is where it opens to easily slip the pillow in and out for easy cleaning.

I'm excited about how it came out. I'm ready to sew up something else!


  1. Those look really good! I love the fabric you used too. On my list of to-do's is make a few pillow covers out of sweaters. We will see how that goes.

  2. Love them!! Beautiful job!!