It has been almost a year since my last blog post! I am excited to be back and feel ready to bring this blog back to life! How about a little sewing tutorial to start things off?
Don't you love these fabrics? I purchased them on a trip to Denver, CO this year. I had no idea what I was going to do with them, but I couldn't leave the shop without them. This weekend I decided they needed to be a pillow cover. I want to show you how you can make one of your own!
Most pillowcase patterns will tell you that a standard pillowcase should measure 26x20 inches. I, however, find that most pillowcases are pretty roomy. For this pillowcase, I wanted it to be a little more snug since it looks more like a sham.
(These tutorial images were taken on my cell phone. I apologize that the quality is not great)
I wanted the front of my pillowcase to measure 26x18 before I put on the binding. If you are going to use just one fabric for the front, cut it 26x18. I chose to use two different fabrics. My center piece (Foxes) was cut at 18x13.5 inches. My two side pieces (glasses) were cut at 18x7 inches.
Pin your 18 inch side pieces to your middle fabric, right sides together.
Now sew 1/4 inch seam the length of the 18 inches. You will do this for both sides. My fabric is a directional fabric, meaning it has a definate top and bottom. If you are using a directional fabric, make sure your prints are all being pinned with tops on top and bottoms on bottom. You don't want to end up with one side upside down.
After you have sewn your sides to your middle fabric, Go ahead and press your seams. In this project, it doesn't matter if you press towards the middle or the sides. I would just make sure you do the same on both sides. I pressed my seams both towards the glasses (sides).
This step is optional, but I like to sew down the seam. I do it because I like the look, but also because it will help the seam stay in plase when the pillowcase get washed. If you don't want any stitiching to show on your pillowcase, you can skip this step.
A note about the backing. Since I wanted my pillow to look like a pillowsham from the front and have a more finished look by binding around the edges, I had to make a backing like the photo above. If you want your pillow to open on the side, like a regualr pillow case, you can, but that is another tutorial for another day.
For the back cut 1 piece of fabric at 18x18.5 inches and another at 18x14 inches.
Take your 18x18.5 inch piece. Fold over and press about 1/2 an inch down the 18 inch side.
Fold it over on itself one more time and press. Repeat this with your 18x14 inch piece as well.
Stitch the fold in place. Now your are ready to assemble!
Lay your top piece down with the backing facing towards you.
Lay your larger piece of fabric down first and pin with WRONG sides together. (If you do not want to do a binding, you can do this same thing with RIGHT sides together, sew around the edges and turn right side out. This will give you a standard pillowcase finish around the edges, but still give you the opening in the back.)
Once your first side has been pinned, pin your second piece. You should have about a 3 inch overlap with your two back pieces. Once you put a pillow in the case, it will stretch and you will want the overlap to keep the entire pillow covered. (You don't want much more overlap than 3 inches, or it will be very hard to get a pillow in the case!)
Now for the binding. On a quilt, I cut my binding strips at 2.5 x WOF (width of fabric), but I found without the batting of a quilt cutting my stips at only 2xWOF was plenty wide. I only needed 3 strips.
Attach your binding. (If you do not know how to attach a binding, I have a tutorial here. I know my method of starting and finishing a binding is not the "right" way, but it is the only way I can do it without having a melt down. If you want to learn the "better" way, Heather Bailey can show you how)
This is what your pillowcase will look like once your binding has been attached. You are so close to the finish line!
Now that your binding is attached, remove all your pins. Don't forget the pins hiding behind your flap!
It's time to finish! At this point, I like to gather my supplies (thread, needle, little scissors and a little cup to collect stray pieces of thread) and join my husband on the couch while he watches football. The sound of football in the house, makes me want to stich something by hand. (Click here for a tutorial on how to finish a binding. I'm pretty sure I do this part right.)
When you bind a quilt, you have a layer of batting between your backing and your top. This gives you a nice buffer to not stitch through to the front of your quilt. On these pillowcasees, however, you do not have such buffer. I had to be very careful not to stitch through both the back and the front while tacking down my binding. If you accidently go through both pieces of fabric, you end up with a stitch line on the front of your pillow like this:
Let's go ahead and pretend I did that on purpose to demonstrate for you, even though we all know it was an accident. Once your binding is done...you're done!
Now, who wants to make a Halloween one?
How adorable is this?!? The only thing I did different on this patchwork pillowcase, is that I quilted it before I added on the back. I didn't want the inside of the pillowcase to have all the seams showing from all the little squares. So, I took a piece of inexpensive white fabric, cut it the same size as the top, and pinned them together like this:
(photo from my instagram: andreatemp)
Then I just did some straight line stitching "in the ditch" of the squares. (I sewed straight down all the seams.) After I was done, I removed all the safty pins and attached my backing the same as the fox pillow above.
I think I might like the back more than the front! I hand stitched a small pull tab on the back of this one. It's always the small details that make me happy!