Patchwork Pillow

Have you ever seen my couches? If you are wondering if you’ve seen them or not, you haven’t. Trust me. They are not easily forgotten. My three piece set is le pièce de résistance of my sitting room. You’ve seen some of my other decor, such as the book quote on the wall with the canvas print of my children reading. And you’ve seen the decoupage/playing card canvas upcycle. What can top those? This baby can.

You know what I tell people about my couches when they hesitantly compliment them? And, yes, everyone says something about them because they aren’t easy to ignore. My response is usually, “The best thing about them is that they’ve never been in style, so they can never go out of style.” That’s pretty much my decorating mantra.

Believe it or not, it’s pretty hard to decorate around orange and black couches. Shocking, right?! Add in the orange and yellow walls, the green hallway behind the room, the purple entryway next to the room and, well, there are only so many directions I can go in here.

I totally lucked into some orange and yellow batik curtains at the thrift store that I was going to turn into napkins but changed my mind, cut them up into squares, and made a patchwork pillow instead!

Well, I made patchwork. First it was going to be a skirt for Eden but the material was too rough. Then it was going to be a tote bag. And then I got tired of sewing and decided to make it a pillow. Welcome to my creative process.

Patchwork is easy, but you have to start doing it to get it. Here are some tips.

Tip #1 

Patchwork is a puzzle. Layout your pieces. Be sure they overlap on each border for seam allowance. This is pretty much the crux of patchwork — overlapping for seam allowance.

Planning saves thread.

Note: I didn’t lay mine out since all my pieces are roughly the same size and all the same color. It was just extra work for this project but invaluable if you have a variety of scraps.

Tip #2

When sewing, do not sew to the end of each piece. You need to leave the overlapping part open for the next seam.

Tip #3

Buy a really awesome new computerized sewing machine to do this and many other projects.

Not so much a tip as a shameless brag.

Happy Birthday to me!

Tip #4

When you have enough fabric patch worked together, you need to square that thang before you can really do anything with it.

My picture is crooked. My patchwork is not.

Tip #5

Whether you are looking for a back to a pillow or a liner for a tote bag or the backing for a quilt, search high and low for the proper coordinating fabric. No price is too high. No fabric store is too far.

Kidding! Rummage through your fabric scraps and find a piece big enough. For my curtain-to-pillow conversion, I used white fabric in my bin that was also from old curtains. I like to stick with the theme. But old tee shirts, old sheets, large scraps, or pieces you picked up dirt cheap in the fabric store remnant bin all work perfectly well.

Lay your patch work on top and cut your lining/backing to match.

Then sew it together and, if making a pillow, half stuff it with polyfill because that’s all you have on hand. Proceed to eye your husband’s pillow suspiciously and then decide that he probably would not be impressed with your resourcefulness if you repurposed the fluff from his pillow. Even though you’re not sure that he needs two pillows. Some people don’t have any pillows at all. Did you think of that? Did you?

My pillow is limp for lack of stuffing.

Voilà! A super easy project using scraps on hand. And without using my husband’s pillow. If you have more scraps and want more ideas, check out Daniél’s awesome scrap using upper ideas!

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2 thoughts on “Patchwork Pillow

  1. love the couches! And the cushion – and the sewing machine -and the creative process. My arty neighbour sacrifices anything too slow to get out of her way when she is making things – there are very few pillows in her house, but some awesome stuffed things 😀

    • Sounds like your neighbor and I would get along. I have a few recycled crafts on the horizon that may or may not test my husband’s patience with me.

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