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In Projects

Make a Pillow

Stitch multiple pillow covers to swap out by the season or your mood.

Bonus: by making an easy-to-remove cover, you can launder your pillow easily, anytime.

What You Need

•  5/8 yd. cotton fabric, prewashed and pressed

•  Matching all-purpose thread

•  16-inch pillow form

•  handful of poly-fil (to fill in corners)

•  1 pkg. sticky-back Velcro (the small circle ones work nicely)

•  General sewing supplies

1.  On the fabric’s Wrong side, measure and mark one 17” square (your Front piece) and one 17”L x 23”W square (your Back piece), making sure to measure the 17” sides along the selvedge.

Tip: If there is a repeat (a repeated pattern) on your printed fabric such as a large flower, note where you center your Front piece.

2. Cut out both Front and Back pieces.

3. Cut Back piece in half along 23″ length so that you have two 17” x 11.5” pieces. Along both center 17″ edges, fold over and press ½” toward Wrong side. Then fold over another inch. Press and pin.

4. Stitch ¾” from each folded edge.

5. With Right sides up, overlap both Back pieces at fold by 3 inches (you can choose the stitching you like least to be on the bottom) and use Velcro to close (following manufacturer instructions). Your Back piece should now be a 17” square like the Front.

6. With Right sides together, pin your pillow Front and Back pieces together. Stitch a ½” seam allowance around the corners.

Tip for stitching around corners: Slowly bringing down your needle to the corner point. Stitch, back stitch, then proceed, keeping your eye along the edge and making sure it stays on the ½” mark on your throat plate. As you approach the next corner, release the foot pedal and turn your handwheel for the last couple stitches until the needle is pierced into the corner point. Keep the needle down, lift your presser foot, and pivot the fabric 90 degrees, put your presser foot backdown and repeat stitching on remaining sides.

7. Trim your seam allowance to ¼” and snip your corners at a diagonal (without cutting into your stitching) to prevent bulk. Press seams flat on one side. Turn Right side out and press flat again.

8. Mark a ½” point from each corner on the Back’s Right side. Topstitch ½” from edge around all sides on the Right side, just as you did on the Wrong side, remembering to pivot at each corner point.

9. Snip away any extra threads and press. Insert your pillow form and use any extra poly-fill to fill in any gaps.

In Projects

Make an Eyeshade

Make these sleep masks in under an hour for great last-minute gifts. It comes in handy when traveling too, on the plane, train, hotels, anywhere you want to grab a snooze.

Download EyeShade Template

What You Need

• Eyeshade pattern (Download File here.)
• 1/4 yd. cotton fabric, prewashed and pressed
• 1/4 yd. coordinating cotton fabric, prewashed and pressed
• 1/2 yd. elastic
• Handful of Poly-fil or lavender
• General sewing supplies
  1. Using your marking too, trace the eyeshade template over the desired area on both fabric prints, on the Wrong side.
  2. Cut 1/2 inch from the trace line to make a Front and a Back piece.
  3. Lay your Front piece Right side up. Place elastic along the center width and pin one end of elastic to the left-hand side with a 1-inch tail beyond the raw edge. Pin the rest of the elastic inside the eyeshade area, avoiding the seam allowance.
  4. Face the Right sides of the fabrics together and pin.
  5. Stitch along the trace line, leaving 1 inch on the right-hand side of the eye shade open.
  6. Press inside the seam line, trim seam to 1/4 inch, and turn Right side out.
  7. Fill the shade lightly and evenly with your filler and pin opening closed.
  8. Place eyeshade over your eyes (be careful of the pin!) and measure the elastic around your head. Mark a comfortable point on the elastic.
  9. Place the loose end of the elastic inside the opening (temporarily moving the pin) and replace the pin at the mark.
  10. Slipstitch the opening closed and get some sleep.

See page 39 of Sunday Sews book for a primer on slipstitching!