Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Petal Pillows

So, our reupholstered wingchairs for the den are almost finished.  Well, that’s my cue to fix up the pillows to go in the chairs.  I saw this online a while ago and fell in love with the design from Amy Butler:

green applique pillow

It’s even available here at Bed Bath and Beyond!

11218316589128P Well, I knew I could do it for less than $40, so I got some green cotton fabric for about $3/yard.  I think I bought 2 1/2 yards, which is very generous, so that’s around $8 for the project—that’s for two pillows, so only $4 if you just want one!  Granted, I already had pillow stuffing so I didn’t have to spend extra for that.

Here’s a simple tutorial for making this pillow:

Step 1.  Cut out your pillow base front and back.  I used the same fabric for both sides and cut a 17” square, for a finished 16” pillow.

Step 2. Cut out your petals.  You will need 24 large, 40 medium, 40 small, and 24 extra small.   I made up a pattern for the four sizes of petals.  They were a lot larger than the original design, but I wasn’t about to start all over cutting them again, so I just ran with it.  The result was less flowers per pillow, which just means less sewing, so yay!  You can see the large petals are 3 1/2 inches long and 1 1/2 inches wide.  The sizes gradually decrease as you go down, some of them I had to cut down to fit before sewing them on—they don’t have to be perfect, real flowers aren’t.


Step 3. Lay out your petals on the pillow front to make flower shapes.  I used 8 petals for the base of each flower.  I did 3 large flowers and 2 smaller ones.  The large flowers started with large petals.  The small flowers started with medium petals. 


I just arranged them on the front until they all fit without any overlap between the flowers.   Then I pinned them all on.


Then I straight stitched them down, pulling the pins as I went.  Starting from the center of the flower, stitch each petal out to about 1/2” from the tip, then leave your needle in the fabric and pivot 180 degrees and stitch back down the same stitching line you just made back to the center.  This is so you don’t have to backstitch for each petal and cut your thread, as well as ensuring a much more secure petal for the life of the pillow.  Repeat for each petal until you are finished with all 8 base petals.


Step 4. Repeat the same process with your second layer of petals.  I used 8 petals of the next size down for each flower.  Then stitched them on the same way.

IMG_1393 IMG_1396

Step 5. This is your last layer of petals.  So, these need to be stitched on nicely without catching the neighbor petals while you stitch, because this is what will show on top.  Repeat the same process for the last layer of petals.  I used the next size down, cutting them smaller if needed and to vary the look of the petals.  I used 7 or 8 petals on the big flowers and 6 or 7 on the smaller ones, to add a little asymmetrical interest.


Step 6.  The last step!  Lay your front and back together with right sides together, pin around the edge and sew with 1/2” seam allowance, leaving a 12” space open on one end for the pillow stuffing.  Turn the pillow and press the seams flat.  Now you are ready to stuff the pillow.  I just stuck a pillow form in mine, but you can also use fiberfill and stuff it in.  Sew up the open edge of the pillow, shake to distribute the filling and voila!


So, maybe mine doesn’t look exactly like the inspiration.  I left off the piping because I wanted the edge to be soft, and mine has five flowers instead of a whopping nine! 

There you have it… a spiffy new pillow with dimensional interest and you can say that you made it yourself! :)


I’m linking up to Make Your Monday at Twice Remembered…


Andrea said...

I love it! And I'm a fan of Amy Butler, too! It's nice to have something good come from Ohio every once in a while!

Beth@The Stories of A to Z said...

Girlfriend, link up to some parties and show off this beauty!!! Love it.

Hannah said...

Of course you made it...I should have known...seriously love it!