A Tale of Two Pillows

Pillow Gifts

I mentioned in my Sewing Summit recap post that on Saturday night I went to a great dinner organized by Jennifer and Elena. Well, besides all the work that goes into getting together a group of 20-something people you have never met before…they also put together swag bags for us with items donated by some very generous sponsors. When they gave them to us at dinner, I swear you would have thought it was Christmas! Lots of squealing going on. (Pretty sure the table of men next to us watching the football game thought we were nuts!)

Pillow for Jennifer

I wanted to make a gift for each of them as a thank you. First I was thinking a mini quilt but then opted for pillows. Because, as Amanda says, anything can be a mini quilt, even a pillow!

Pillow for Jennifer

In Salt Lake City, someone smart said that life would be a lot easier if everyone you made a gift for had a Flickr Favorites photostream. How.true. I did some snooping in Jennifer’s photo stream and noticed a lot of work by Stitch in Dye’s Malka Dubrawsky. Luckily I just took a class on Improvisational Piecing by Malka so I sort of knew how to start.

Pillow for Jennifer Embroidery

I made four improv blocks, each around 5 inches. There is a bit of curved piecing – yes, that’s on purpose! LOL A bit of adding fabric to the square to make it fit to the block next to it. Then I off-centered the block for the pillow. I’m 95% certain the tan is an Essex Linen. I wish I had marked it when I bought it! Then I embroidered Jennifer’s name on the pillow to personalize it a bit. I quilted the front with straight lines, about 1/2″ apart, in the sashing. I made a scrappy binding for the pillow, love scrappy binding!

Pillow for Elena

When I was looking through Elena’s favorites, I noticed she liked bright colors and stars…she had a lot of stars in her Favorites! Remember that tutorial on Y-Seams last week? I needed to learn those to make her pillow, which is a block from the Jazz Hands quilt in Material Obsession 2.

Pillow for Elena

I quilted Elena’s pillow using straight lines on either side of the diagonal seams. Then I also embroidered her name on the front. The binding and backing of Elena’s pillow are both from Erin McMorris’ Summersault fabric line.

Pillow for Elena Embroidery

Both pillows are a bit smaller than 18″ (I like the overstuffed look…I hope they do too!) Jennifer and Elena received their pillows this week so I’m not spoiling the surprise. Thanks again to both of you!

New Colors for the Couch

Saturated Pillow

I took a break yesterday from a “secret project” to make a new pillow for my couch. I decided to bring some new colors into the room, which is mostly earth tones. I really love these prints, half from Anna Maria Horner’s Loulouthi collection and half from Tula Pink’s Parisville collection. The solid is Kona Ash. Since I am feeling much more confident in paper piecing after the Summer Sampler Series, I created my own templates for this pillow. I think it turned out quite well!

Pillow Quilting

I quilted 1/4″ on each side of the seams and I love this little star it created in the center of the pillow.

Pillow Binding

The binding is a yellow print from Parisville. I was going back and forth on that choice, worried it was maybe too bold. But in the end, I think it adds a little extra punch to the pillow.

Pillow Front

I plan on making one more pillow for the other side of my couch, but I will probably do another design with the same fabrics.

Pillow Inspiration

Pillow Inspiration

1. HAPPY BIRTHDAY ERIN, 2. Pillow Talk Swap 5 received, 3. pts5 done!, 4. the pillow I made for Pillow Talk Swap 5, 5. 007, 6. pillow swap d.o.n.e., 7. A Plus for me! – 193:365, 8. pompom.happy, 9. PTS4, 10. Front of pillow, 11. colorful bits pillow 002, 12. Joseph’s Coat Pillow – it’s done!, 13. My Pillow Talk Swap, 14. Patchwork Drawing Room Pillow, 15. Nate pillow , 16. PTS Pillow, 17. Rainbow Coin Pillow, 18. PTS4), 19. Amy’s Spiderweb – 192:365, 20. Bask in her beauty!, 21. Pillow Back, 22. Color wheel pillow in progress, 23. Tuesday blog pillow, 24. FMF Dresden Plate Pillow Front, 25. Flea Market Wonky Pillow

I’m in the mood to make some new pillows and have been searching Flickr for inspirations. No shortage there! I plan on using Anna Maria Horner’s Loulouthi Clippings in Passion for the central fabric. Now I just need a plan…

Meadow Stripe Pillows

Modern Stripe Pillows

I think the best part about sewing is the ability to change the look of a room so easily. In fact, these pillows could also be called the “Update-Your-Family-Room-in-1-Nap-Time” pillows. I was ready for a change on my couch and had been looking at Joel Dewberry’s Modern Meadow collection since I went on my trip to the Fabric Shack. I wanted something simple as I was getting tired of my string block pillows…started to get too busy for my eyes.

Modern Stripe Pillow Closeup

I just cut random width stripes of fabric and then quilted them with a straight line on each side of the seams. The back is an awesome linen that Fabric.com sent to me accidentally. If I knew what it was, I would probably buy yards and yards of it. It is perfect. I finished them off with an invisible zipper – I’m getting quite good at those. And voila, instant new look!