Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Summer craft series: A pillow two years in the making

At the beginning of 2010, Ron and I gave up paper napkins as our New Year's resolution.  I anticipated a challenging switch to linen napkins, but it's been pretty easy to manage.  Even at places like Home Goods, linen napkins aren't always cheap and/or attractive. (It's hit or miss there--you know what it's like.)  In the end, I bought a HUGE table cloth there (it was either 60 x 104 or 60 x 120) and turned it into something like 20 or 22 napkins (12-14" squares).  After cutting all the napkins around the perimeter of the tablecloth, I found I had enough fabric for a large pillow. (I didn't use most of the fabric in the center of the tablecloth because it wasn't nearly as pretty as edging.)

Long story short, the pieces for the pillow hung all ironed and ready to go (with pom-pom trim) next to my sewing machine for two years before I stitched it up. A basic square. With a preformed pillow form to shove inside. Two years.

I bet Betty Draper doesn't even have matching napkins and pillows.

The tricky part with edging is thinking through how to pin it/sew it so that it's correct when you turn the finished product right-side out.

Also, when doing the actual sewing, you have to make sure that you're actually attaching the edging to the fabric while still hiding most (if not all) of the woven strip that holds the pom-poms together.  (You can't see if you're missing the fabric under the edging.) Also, that woven strip should be hidden as far inside the pillow as possible.  I really messed that up the first time I worked with pom-poms.

The fabric on the back is from a sheet set. A few years ago, I could NOT find a bed skirt that worked on our bed. All of them had too short a drop, so there was this weird gap between the bottom of the skirt and the floor. It drove me nuts. I finally went out and bought a super-cheap king size bedding set at Kmart, and I turned the flat sheet into a custom bed skirt.  No more gap!  I put the pillow cases on king size pillows that I used all the time, and I used the fitted sheet for fabric to make family room pillows.

So that's that: Two years to sew together two squares with a store-bought pillow form inside.  I promise there will be something more impressive next week.  (Well, not very impressive.  More impressive than this.)

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