Thursday, February 11, 2010

Pillow Talk: DIY steps

I’m not a seamstress by any means. I’m actually quite awful with the sewing machine. Every time I even try to use it/learn how use it something always happens. Last time the machine just died on me. Perhaps it could feel that I hate it so and just gave up on life.


So when it comes to my sewing projects for clients I reach out to my favorite seamstress and get perfection every time. Due to a time crunch and in the hopes of saving some money I decided to have my pillows made by someone local who always helps me out for FREE. Who is my local help? That would be Jon! We both took Home Ec in high school and for some reason he did brilliant and I had to go after school to finish my already crooked apron.


Well Jon decided that it wasn’t helping me to have him do all the sewing instead of me learning on my own. So he did the first one and the rest were all me!


In September I made a trip to Roberta Roller Rabbit and instead of purchasing pillows or yardage of fabric I bought napkins at $8 a piece.



I then ordered some white canvas fabric for the backs of my pillows and picked up pillow forms at JOANN's at 50% off.


I’ve had all of those supplies sitting in the guest room since this Fall. Talk about procrastination. Last Saturday night I vowed to not go to bed until the pillows were made. I was up till 2:30am sewing, but I finished them.


Now originally I had thought I would put zippers on the pillow cases so that they could be removed and washed. Well when push came to shove that just seemed too hard. Luckily for me I found this tutorial to help me.


First step: Take your napkin and lay it fabric side up.


Second step: Take your white canvas fabric (Or what ever you are using for the backing) and cut 1 piece to be exactly half of the length of the pillow. Then cut another piece a couple of inches longer. No need for exact measurements just make sure it’s a little bit longer.


*See how my piece to the right extends past the napkin. That’s the extra length that we needed.


Third Step: Now since the back of the pillow is going to look like an envelope of some sort you are going to have two exposed edges so very quickly I sewed a straight stitch down each piece of white canvas.


Fourth Step: You will now have your napkin pattern side facing up and two pieces of white canvas each with a hemmed side.


The smaller of the white canvas pieces gets placed first directly on top of the napkin and then the larger white canvas piece gets placed on top of the that. With hem sides facing towards each other.  Now you can pin everything together!


* This picture is with another napkin, but it just gives you a better idea of what the pillow should look like when you are pinning it.


Fifth Step: Once everything is pinned just run it through the sewing machine. So easy!  Flip it inside out and you are done. Now you just need to stuff it with your pillow form!


Sixth Step: Once the pillow form is inserted the pillow still may need a little extra to fill it up. After all napkin sizes aren’t normally the exact size of pillow form so I used some left over quilting batting to wrap around the form.


Overall it was an REALLY EASY project and I was able to do it!


Granted it took me a while, because I did 5 pillows and had to do all the cutting, hemming, stitching and had a couple of breakdowns along the way, but it was totally worth it. Now I know exactly what I’m doing and looking forward to making many many more.


A big thanks to A Home in the Making  for all the great tips and steps!


As if this post couldn’t get any longer I just need to add that I’m super excited that my guest room made it on to Design Sponge!


For some reason it’s not uploading for me on my computer, but I was able to see it on my iphone.

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Blogger Chic Geek said...

Amazing! I love how you used the RRR napkins. I am totally going to copy you when decorating my little sisters college room...Genious!

February 11, 2010 at 12:34 PM  
Anonymous Kim said...

Ha, I JUST saw your space on D*S and hopped over here to see if you knew! Congrats! (Out of curiosity - did you submit your room, or did someone nominate you, or did D*S find you directly?)

February 11, 2010 at 12:38 PM  
Blogger Scientific Housewife said...

That sounds complicated for me but they turned out really well!

February 11, 2010 at 1:00 PM  
Blogger Sarah Ring said...

Congrats on being featured!! Loving the pillow project!

February 11, 2010 at 1:08 PM  
Blogger Design Esquire said...

The pillows look amazing - you did a great job!!

And congrats on being mentioned on Design Sponge - you deserve it, the room looks awesome!

February 11, 2010 at 1:15 PM  
Blogger Averill said...

Brilliant! I have some RRR napkins that I've been contemplating turning into pillows for my banquette and now you've inspired me to actually DO it.

February 11, 2010 at 1:23 PM  
Blogger Nikki said...

Great idea! I hadn't thought of napkins. I have a bunch of pillow projects hanging out waiting for me to get my act together. Thanks for the inspiration!

February 11, 2010 at 2:12 PM  
Blogger My Galveston Cottage said...

FABULOUS!!! Love this post and it comes at a time when I want to try to sew my own. I have great fabric remnants.... I will be back to look again when I take out my machine.

February 11, 2010 at 2:23 PM  
Blogger LindsB said...

look at you little miss sewing lady- I love that Jon told you he would not do anymore and that it was time you learn- what a cutie :)

They look great, I love the fabric you picked!

February 11, 2010 at 2:36 PM  
Blogger Jenn said...

Oh my goodness -- thank you for the mention! :)
You did an amazing job on those pillows!

February 11, 2010 at 2:38 PM  
Blogger Nicole-Lynn said...

They turned out great! Thanks for the step by step instructions. I'll hold on to this post in my email to refer back to later :) Thanks!

February 11, 2010 at 2:40 PM  
Blogger Sarah La Rose said...

You are such an inspiration!! I'm so excited to try this myself. If only I had a sewing machine. In time I will.

February 11, 2010 at 2:43 PM  
Anonymous Laura@JourneyChic said...

I'm so glad you posted this! I just ordered some great fabric to make pillow covers, but have yet to take my sewing machine out of the box. I'm inspired now and will make a serious effort to sew them over the long weekend.

February 11, 2010 at 3:22 PM  
Blogger Kate said...

I don't consider having a project sitting around since fall procrastination. I have projects that have been sitting for years. The pillows are adorable and I love the idea of using napkins.

February 11, 2010 at 4:00 PM  
Blogger Kelly Green said...

Fantastic job- you have inspired me to get my machine out! you made it look easy peasy.....KG

February 11, 2010 at 4:46 PM  
Blogger Katie @ Noodle and Boof said...

Could you just make me some pllllleassse?? So cute! Great job!

February 11, 2010 at 4:52 PM  
Blogger Pigtown*Design said...

They look wonderful and i love the tutorial! i am a sewing fiend these days and the first thing i did when i got my car freed from the snow, was drive over to debois, but they weren't open. :-(

ps. congrats on d*s!

February 11, 2010 at 4:56 PM  
Blogger Anna Newman said...

That IS easy, thanks for sharing

February 11, 2010 at 5:12 PM  
Blogger Chic Coles said...

These look amazing! I wish I had a sewing machine. I would make a ton of pillows in a lot of great fabrics.

February 11, 2010 at 5:54 PM  
Blogger Christen said...

It's good to know I'm not the only one who breaks down when I sew :) These are amazing! You did such a great job!

February 11, 2010 at 6:41 PM  
Anonymous Loribeth said...

You did a great job! The pillows look fantastic.

February 11, 2010 at 7:48 PM  
Blogger Dayka Robinson said...

Love those pillows, and congrats on the feature!

February 11, 2010 at 7:54 PM  
Blogger Tammy@InStitches said...

Great job ! I just made some out of some fancy hand towels that were on clearance at Home Goods for $1.00.

February 11, 2010 at 9:51 PM  
Blogger Marija said...

These are great! Talk about going above and beyond for a client. I found you through another blogroll and I'm so glad I did - I will certainly be back. BTW, I asked for a sewing machine for Christmas one year, my mom bought it and she has been the only one to ever use it!

February 11, 2010 at 10:02 PM  
Blogger Lovely Little Nest said...

Incredible job! LOVE the "fabric" you used ~ such vibrant colors! They really look great :)

February 11, 2010 at 11:49 PM  
Anonymous Erin @ Domestic Adventure said...

I love these and you did a great tutorial! The one thing that I learned when I made some pillow covers like this is to leave an extra inch or two of overlap in the back in case your pillow is extra fluffy. My first pillow cover had a gaping back when I stuffed it because the overlap wasn't quite big enough for the fluff!

February 12, 2010 at 7:11 AM  
Blogger Julie at Belle Vivir said...

How clever. I love all fabrics you selected.

February 12, 2010 at 7:44 AM  
Blogger Brittany Simmons said...

Just stumbled across your blog (mine is loveofinteriors) great tutorial- and I'm with you on the sewing dilemna! I have been on the hunt for pillow fabric that I can see and quickly buy (as opposed to order) and cheap too. So using napkins instead is a great idea. Oh- and your guest room is very fun!

February 12, 2010 at 12:03 PM  
Blogger Brooke @ Blueprint Bliss said...

I'm a big fan of making pillows out of napkins. So easy. Yours look fabulous!

February 12, 2010 at 2:34 PM  
Blogger Erika Ward said...

Congrats on the D*S feature! Everything looks amazing...and this pillow idea, brilliant. I still can't get over the fact that your husband can jealous!

February 13, 2010 at 2:23 PM  
Anonymous Mitzi Curi said...

Very nice job with those pillows! I have a pile of cool fabric just waiting to be used......maybe I'll get to it this winter!

February 16, 2010 at 2:57 PM  

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