The Sew It and Gift It Blog Hop was fun last week. I was amazed by all the wonderful ideas for gifts. I hope you found something to make for someone special.
I was in pillow-making mode and today I finished this Unicorn Fleece Pillow following the directions from Crafting Cheerfully HERE.
This weekend I am going to make the Polar Bear fleece pillow following her directions. If I use brown fleece, it will be a brown bear and probably just as cute. These pillows will be for two little tykes of a friends I know.
Saving $ on Fleece
I have been purchasing fleece from the remnant bin at JoAnn's stores. When fleece is on sale at JoAnn's it is the best time to buy it. I found the sale price is applied to the remnant and then an extra 50% is taken off of that price at the register. So for $1 or $2 I can get enough for stuffed animals and pillows!
This pillow doesn't use much fabric, so it was very inexpensive to make. Oh, except for the 12" square pillow. I did get 50% off during a sale, but it was still over $5 with tax. I'll accept the savings on the fleece and be happy.
Carla announced her Stitch It and Gift It Blog Hop on one of her blog posts a few months back. It's fun joining Carla on her blog hops and this one fit right in to what I was working on at the time. I hope you have been following the blog hop and enjoying it. Thank you, CARLA! If you are a list keeper, Spoonflower has a free Hand-Made Holiday To-Do List that can be printed to keep track of projects to make and who you will recieve them. I am finding lists are very helpful for me this time of the year.
So, I'm here to share with you The Pocket Pillow Book Totes I have been making for gifts. These are easy to make. The hardest part is deciding how to coordinate the fabrics! I'll go through how I make my totes, but I've written an instruction sheet to share with you. Grab it HERE. FIRST, before I give the instruction rundown, I'll give the list of the other bloggers participating in the Stitch It and Gift It Blog Hop right now.
OK! Here we go! Besides your cutting mat, rotary cutter, pins, and sewing machine, you will need:
1/2 yard main print
1/2 yard coordinating fabric for pocket
14” pillow form
Follow these steps:
1.From main print, cut one 14-1/2” x 14-1/2” square and two rectangles 10” x 14-1/2”.
2.From coordinating fabric, cut one 14-1/2” x 14-1/2” square and one 6” x 14-1/2” rectangle.
3.Fold and press the 6” x 14-1/2” rectangle in half, open it, fold the edges to the middle, press in half to form a strip that is about 1-1/2” x 14-1/2”. Stitch along both folded edges.
Fold the coordinating 14-1/2" x 14-1/2" fabric in half with wrong sides together. Press and top stitch 1/4" from folded edge.
4. Hem the two 10” x 14-1/2” rectangles along one 14-1/2” edge of each piece by folding one edge 1/4" and again 1/4" for the hem, pressing and pinning. (If using directional fabrics, hem the top edge of one piece and the bottom edge of the other.)
Now you are ready to put the layers together and sew the pillow!
Place the main 14-1/2” x 14-1/2” piece, right side up on table.
Find the top center of this piece. Mark 3-1/2" to the left and to the right of the center.
Pin the 1-1/2” x 14-1/2” handle in place on the top of the main print, with the outer edge of each handle touching that 3-1/2” mark from the center.
Align the pocket with the bottom of main print, matching raw edges.
Place the 14-1/2" raw edge of one hemmed rectangle along the top edge, over the handles, aligning all raw edges. Re-pin the handle so the pins are now on the outside.
Place the raw edge of the lower hemmed rectangle along the bottom edge, aligning raw edges. The two folded 10" x 14-1/2" pieces will overlap about 3". Pin around all four edges.
Stitch around all edges with a 1/2” seam allowance. Reinforce the handle edges by re-stitching that portion of the seam allowance.
Clip the corners.
Turn right side out through the back opening, push corners out. Insert pillow form. I have an easy way to turn the corners of pillows out and very seldom do I have to use something to poke them out! CLICK HERE for a short instruction.
What a great gift for a child. They can tote their pillow and book to the sitter's, grandma's, on a trip, to bed. These would be great for donating to a children's charity as well with a book in the pocket. Let me know if you make one or more and how you gifted it.
Have you ever sewn a pillow with 90 degree corners (right angles) and had such trouble getting them out. You might use a chopstick or point turner, pencil or scissor tip and ended up poking out the stitches OR WORSE! Ripping the corner fabric!
I learned this trick from a woman who sewed home decor and it has served me well for many years.
I found this works whether or not I trim the excess fabric near the corners.
Work on one corner at a time. With your pillow wrong side out, place your index finger inside at the pillow corner point.
Fold the seam allowance on one side of the corner along the stitching and hold with your thumb.
Then fold the other edge of stitching that meets that corner in and hold it with your thumb as well.
This will create a new folded corner.
At this point, hold those folds with thumb and index finger still inside the pillow. Turn the this wrong side corner into the pillow and push it out so the right side is exposed.
The corner will be a nice pointed 90 degree corner.
Repeat for all the corners.
Please leave a comment letting me know if you found this helpful.