Sunday, December 2, 2012

A Series of Christmas Pillows {all with 2 1/2 inch scraps} Part 1

It is officially December!  I must admit I am already done Christmas shopping, and pretty tickled about it.  My kids are 3 and 5 this year and were SO MUCH FUN to shop for!  Now that the shopping is over I am ready to dive into my Christmas sewing!

After finishing up my Vintage Holiday Quilt  I had a TON of leftover 2.5 inch squares and strips.  I was also in need of some Christmas pillow covers for my couch.  I devised a plan to make 3 different pillow covers using either 2.5 inch squares or strips! The perfect project for all of those smaller scraps!

I wrote up a little tutorial, just in case you would like to make one too!

To make a pillow cover for an 18 inch pillow form you will need:

Wright Easy Dresden Tool
20 different strips of fabric measuring 2.5 inches x 5 inches
18.5 inch x 18.5 inch square of background fabric
6 x 6 inch piece of fabric (for the center of the dresden, or smaller if you prefer)
7 x 7 inch piece of plain fabric (for the back of the center of the dresden)
2 - 18.5 inch x 12 inch pieces of fabric for the back of the pillow cover envelope closure
20 x 20 inch piece (or so) of plain colored fabric for the back of your "quilt sandwich"
20 x 20 inch piece (or so) of warm and white or warm and natural cotton batting.

1. Using your Wright Easy Dresden Tool cut 20 - 5 inch dresden blades.  Fold them in half (I like to iron mine) and sew down the short side.  I did mine by chain sewing them (as pictured) and it saved a lot of time.

2. Clip the point off the folded/sewed edge and flip them right side out.

3. Iron them flat and hit them with a bit of starch.

4. Lay two blades against each other (pretty sides in) and sew down the raw edge until it looks like this.

5. Sew both pieces together so you have a circle.  Starch and press it until it lays flat(ish).

6.  Now we need to make the center of our dresden.  Use anything that is a 6 inch diameter circle, trace onto the backside of your pretty fabric.  Sandwich your pretty fabric to your plain colored fabric.

7. Carefully sew all the way around the circle.

8. Using pinking shears trim all the way around your circle leaving a 1/4 inch edge.

9. Flip over and cut a hole in the cream backing (be sure not to cut through to the front).

10. Flip your circle inside out so it looks like this.  Press with your iron (working to pull out the seams as you go).

11. Now take your background piece of fabric and cut one piece 18.5 x 18.5 inches.  Fold it into 1/4's and lightly press the seams.  Now we have a center of the square.

12. Make a quilt sandwich with the front of your pillow: first lay down the 20 x 20 piece of fabric ( I like to tape mine to the table so it doesn't slide around), then the batting, then the front of your pillow.  Pin your dresden plate so it is centered on your background (using your fold marks as a guide), now pin it all over. Carefully sew all the way around the outside of the dresden.  Next pin and sew all the way around the inside circle.  
 13. Quilt as desired!  I did an echo pattern with my 1/4 inch guide foot.  Trim off all of the excess fabric and batting.

14. To make the envelope back closure for your pillow: finish the long edges (18. 5 inch) of your two back rectangles by folding one side under 1/4" twice, pressing with your iron and sewing in place.  

15. Place your pillow front and back pieces right sides together, lining up the edges. Put one of the rectangles down against the right side of your pillow, then put your other rectangle over it on the left side, right sides together. Pin it around all of the edges. 

15.  Using a 1/2 inch inseam sew all the way around the edge of the pillow.  Clip the corners to get rid of some of the bulk.  

16. Using a zig zag stitch or serger go all the way around the raw edge of your pillow cover (so it doesn't fray).  Flip your pillow cover right side out and iron.  Stuff with your 18 x 18 inch pillow form and enjoy!  

I will be back soon with another Christmas pillow cover!  Have a great week!


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  1. Gorgeous, Cherie! I'm tucking this one away for another day... :)

  2. Your pillow is beautiful! I loved your tutorial and pictures and so making a dresden quilt in the new year with your directions!