Install Pillow Piping from The Sewing Loft: National Sewing Month 2013

It’s Day Twenty-Nine of National Sewing Month! Too see the daily blog posts, projects of the day, and more National Sewing Month details, click here.

National Sewing Month 2013

Hello, Hello FaveCraft Readers! Heather here from The Sewing Loft and I’m so excited to join the party during National Sewing Month with you.

The Sewing Loft

Today, I want to show just how easy it is to install custom piping on decorative pillows. This simple trim can really create that WOW factor on a limited budget.

Install Pillow Piping


Install Pillow Piping | The Sewing Loft

This project is for all levels.

Skill Level- 1 Button


  • custom piping
  • pillow pattern


  • sewing machine
  • zipper foot
  • basic sewing supplies

Basic Instructions:

  1. Attach your zipper foot to your machine and check the needle position.
  2. Determine the starting point of piping on your pillow. I suggest in the middle of the bottom of the pillow to hide.
  3. Position piping; pin in place all around pillow matching seam allowance.
  4. Straight stitch as close to the cording as possible, clipping corners as needed to turn the seam.
  5. To join piping, unpick a few stitches on piping and fold back fabric to expose cording. Clip cording to match evenly; fold under the fabric edge and overlap to cover the seam; continue stitching piping in place.

Install Pillow Piping | The Sewing Loft

Custom piping is an easy way to add that decorative touch on a shoestring budget. The key is to take your time and not to be caught short with the trim. With a few minutes of prep work and some simple calculations, you can transform even the simplest pillow insert into a decorator pillow.

Here is what I created with my piping.

Witches Brew Pillow by The Sewing Loft


The Sewing Loft

PS- If this easy project inspires you to get your needle moving, be sure to visit me for more inspiration and sewing tips.



What project in your home would you use piping on?


National Sewing Month 2012: Reading Pillow With Pocket Tutorial

It’s day 7 of the National Sewing Month blog series and today’s post is so much fun. This reading pillow packs everything you need for some serious “me” time. Not to mention, it’s going to make your relaxation session much more comfortable. Before we get to it, I just want to remind you that along with these wonderful guest posts and tutorials, we’re giving away a HUGE prize at the end of our series. We can’t tell you what that prize is just yet. But we can tell you how to enter. Simply leave a comment at the bottom of any of our series posts (any with National Sewing Month 2012 in the title) and you’re entered to win!

Here’s today’s special post, created by Melissa Mortenson from the blog The Polka Dot Chair. To learn more about Melissa and to find her entire project collection, visit her designer profile.



Hello Fave Crafts Blog readers! I am soooo flattered that they asked me to be a part of the celebrations here for National Sewing Month. I love to sew, it is truly one of the great pleasures in my life. When I’m not sewing you can find me busily blogging away at The Polkadot Chair, or stalking Pinterest for new things to pin (I may be slightly obsessed!)

I thought a lot about what to share with you guys today. I decided on a revamp of some pillows I made for my nephews a few Christmases ago. I did them quick (like in an hour) and always thought that I could have done a better job. Regardless my sister says that her boys took them to bed every night and kept all kinds of treasures in the pocket. I gifted the pillows with a flashlight, because there is something charming about a little kid staying up late to read at night.

Here’s how to make the pillow:

You will need:

  • 3 Fat Quarters (the measurements leave little to no waste of these fat quarters, so if you are nervous about your cutting abilities buy 4 so you have an extra just in case).
  • 2 yards 1″ wide ribbon
  • Fusible Fleece
  • 1 package piping
  • Letters- I cut mine out of fuzzy fusible vinyl with my Silhouette machine… if you don’t have one, don’t worry you could also appliqué the letters on or buy iron on letters at the craft store.
  • 18″ pillow form

Cut one Fat Quarter to 18″x 18″ for the pillow front, then cut the scrap from this piece to 2 1/2″ x 18″ for pillow back

Cut one Fat Quarter (the navy blue dot for the pocket) into 2 pieces each 18″ x 11″

Cut another Fat Quarter for the back into 2 pieces each 18″ x 9″


Attach fusible fleece to the back of the Pillow Front piece (18×18) and the pocket front piece (11×18)

Iron “READ” onto the front pocket piece.

Using a piping foot attach 1 piece of piping to the top of the pillow. The raw edge of the piping will match up with the raw edge of the pocket piece.

Place pocket lining piece (your 2nd 11×18 piece) right sides together with your pocket front piece. Stitch along the top seam, along the same stitching line you just used to attach your piping. This will ensure that your piping looks good on the outside of your pillow.

Turn pillow pocket piece right side out and press.

Pin pocket piece to Pillow front piece. Baste pocket to pillow front. Set aside.

Place about 12″ of ribbon in the center of one of your pillow back pieces along the 18″ edge. Stitch in place. Take your scrap piece from your pillow front and sew it to this same edge of the pillow back piece. (as shown in the photo above) Turn under edge 1/4″ and hem.

Take your 2nd 9″x18″ pillow back piece and turn under the seam 1/4″ and sew in place. Sew another piece of ribbon to the center of this piece.

Attach a piece of ribbon about 10″ long to your pillow front at the top. Each end should be 3″ in from the side of the pillow.


Using your piping foot attach piping to the edge of the pillow front. Raw edge of the piping flush with the raw edge of the pillow front.


Pin the 2 pillow back pieces to pillow front piece. The ribbons should be matching in the center and the piece with the extra piece sewn onto it should be on top (the photo is wrong, learned that one the hard way *wink*).

Using your piping foot sew pillow front to pillow back along the same stitching line you used to attach your piping.

Clip corners, turn right side out and you’re done!

What’s on your reading list this season?


Upcycle Pants into a Quilted Pillow!

This guest post was written by Phyllis Dobbs from Phyllis Dobbs Art & Design Studio.

*This giveaway is now over. Please enjoy the free tutorial below.

Hi, I’m Phyllis Dobbs.  I was delighted to meet Jessica Nichols, the editor of at the International Quilt Market. I was even more delighted when she asked if I would write a guest blog. Since Earth Week is celebrated this month, I created a pillow that is repurposed from an article of clothing.


Upcycled Floral Pillow

I love shopping thrift stores where you can find fantastic treasures just waiting for you and your imagination. Don’t shop with just the thought of reusing something; shop thinking of how you can turn it into something else. Yard sales are another treasure trove. Another place that I look for treasures is my own closet. If I love the fabric or accents on a piece of clothing or accessory, I add it to my stash for repurposing that is tucked away in my attic (and a step away from my studio). A former resident of my closet is the source of this project – a pair of capris that I bought a few years ago and have never worn. (I think it had to do with the thought that they made me look fat.) I loved the fabric so I had added them to my stash.

Materials :

  • Pillow form (I reused a form from a pillow I had also discarded).
  • Cotton batting
  • Beads (an old necklace is great for recycling beads).
  • Surface threads – both metallic and non-metallic
  • Fabric for pillow back

 (The threads were furnished by Gutermann and the batting by The Warm Company.)

1. Determine the size of the pillow and add a couple of inches to the width and height. Cut the clothing to get fabric this size – it’s okay to include seams. From the pants, I cut across one leg, then opened one side seam.

Cut Off Pants

2.  Spread the fabric over a piece of cotton batting that is a little larger than the fabric. Pin or baste together.

Pillow Quilt Sandwich

3.  Sew wavy lines across the fabric and batting top to bottom multiple times as desired.  I used 2 colors of non-metallic Gutermann thread – light and dark coral, and 3 shades of metallic for sparkle – light and dark turquoise and black.  Stitch the lines using long stitches, criss-crossing over each other.

Quilting Upcycled Pants Pillow

4. Sew beads randomly on surface. I used 2 different size turquoise beads to sew randomly, then sewed small red beads to the flower centers. Large yellow teardrop beads were sewn to the flower centers.

Close-Up of Quilting

5. Lay the finished top face down on backing fabric and cut back. Pin right sides together, and then sew, leaving a 7” opening along bottom edge. Turn right side out and press. Insert pillow form and hand stitch the opening closed.

Have fun! Choose your fabric and make your pillow adding your personalized touches with your wonderful thrift or closet finds!

Phyllis Dobbs

Phyllis invites you to visit her blog to read about her new quilt book “Asymmetrical Quilts” and to get a sneak peak of her newest fabric collection “Celebrate”.

Vintage Sheet Half Square Triangle PillowWant more ways quilt pillows? Check out these free patterns too!

Crossing Paths Pillow
Layered Brick Pillow
Raggedy Country Nine Patch Pillow
Homespun Patchwork Rag Pillow
Denim Cathedral Window Pillow
On Point Frames Quilted Pillow
How to Make a Patchwork Pillow
Vintage Sheet Half Square Triangle Pillow

Make Your Nest—17 Ideas for DIY Home Decor

Sometimes all you need to make a room feel like yours is to add a new piece or two. Ideas for DIY home décor will help you add unique style to any room in the house. With some craft materials, you can create your own accessories rather than resorting to manufactured, store-bought items. Make your nest a place you enjoy spending time in and showing off with these fun DIY home decor projects!

Pretty Pillow

Pillows can be quick and easy to make and they usually don’t use much material. For some cute ideas, check out 15 Patterns for Easy Homemade Pillows and 32 Pillow Making Crafts. I absolutely love this Anthropologie inspired Orimono Pillow. It’s perfect for a multicolored room. However, if the idea of sewing a scares you away, DIY No Sew Pillows are just for you! The trick is to use fusion tape to make the seams.

Decoupage Crafts

With decoupage, your furniture woes can be solved. There’s no need to scour stores for the perfect shelf or table. Buy something simple or old and revamp it with your crafty skills. Decoupage is an amazing solution for creating your own designs. Have fun with this inspiring table and storage projects!

End Table Upcycle
String of Circles Bookshelf for Plaid
Decoupage Dresser
Decoupage Storage Bin

Homemade Vases

You don’t need to flowers to put out vases. Use any vase as a table accessory to spruce up a room quickly and give it some character. Inspiration jars are easily made by using glass paint and stencils to brighten up old jars. And for even more color, check out the Circles of Color Vase. Use masking tape to mark off the design you want and paint with glossy colors.  Turn another vase into a work of by making this Decoupage Bud vase. Scrap book paper, ribbons, flowers, and some Mod Podge is all it takes! And for a project that’s more labor intensive (but very rewarding!) check out the Cottage Shore Pair project.

Creative Wall Art

There are so many options for your walls! DIY home décor projects will help you deck them out in your favorite styles. Paint those walls and add some interesting pieces for decoration. The best part is that you’re going to create that art!  Check out a great collection of projects in 19 Cool Wall Art and Décor Ideas. It will provide you with the inspiration you need to make your home look amazing! And view some of these other projects for more fun ideas:

Colorful Stencil Wall Art
Embroidery Hoop Bulletin Board
Stenciled Embroidery Hoop-Art
Mosaic Wall

What DIY home decor projects do you like to make to add some style to your nest?

We are giving away a prize a day every day here on our FaveCrafts blog for National Craft Month. It is so easy to enter. Just go to our Project of the Day post and comment to enter! You have 31 chances to win and a new special prize each day.

Link Love: Pillow Talk

Let’s talk about pillows, shall we? They’re there for you when you need to rest your head, they spruce up a boring old couch, and they are a great to practice sewing on. Plus, they’re quick to make and even quicker to rotate as the seasons change. Here are some cool DIY pillow ideas from around the web.

  1. Flower Pillow Form Cover from Squeezing it All In
  2. Petal Pillow Knockoff from The Gunny Sack for Someday Crafts
  3. Swirly Ruffle Pillow from Ameroonie Designs
  4. T-Shirt Ruffle Pillow from Tiffany Ruda
  5. Thrifted Skirt Rose Pillow from Bromeliad
  6. Rosette Cluster Pillow from Twig & Thistle
  7. Rolled Rosette Pillow from Craft Goodies
  8. Pretty Pink Pleated Pillow from The House of Smiths
  9. Big Bow Pillow from Say YES! to Hoboken


Link Love: Beautiful Bedding

Don’t neglect your bed when creating beautiful home decor! After all, you spend roughly 1/3 of your life asleep, so you might as well have a gorgeous bed covered in pretty pillows and a fluffy duvet cover. Here are some cool DIY projects for bedding that I found this week.

  1. Anthropologie Inspired Knotted Bedding from Kojo Designs.
  2. Cirrus Duvet from Sweetie Pie Bakery.
  3. Hawaiian Style Floor Pillows from The Purl Bee.
  4. Knockoff Ruffle Pillow from Lemon Tree Creations at Kojo Designs.
  5. Circle Applique Quilt from Eden and Eliot.
  6. Crib Sheets from Made at luvinthemommyhood.
  7. Stylish Crib Bumpers from Sew 4 Home.
  8. Ruffle Pillow from Ruffles and Roses.
  9. Duvet Knockoff from Kiki Creates.

How to Make a Pillow for Mom

Learning how to make a pillow is a great idea for Mother’s Day. Pillow crafts are quick, easy and make perfect homemade gifts. You can practice your new skills in crochet, knitting or sewing by learning how to make a pillow from scratch, or embellish a pillow with beads, buttons, fabric paints and other materials. You can also personalize the pillow for your Mom’s tastes.

How to Make a Pillow from Scratch

Learning how to make a pillow from scratch is quite simple. You will need two identical squares or rectangles of fabric, stuffing and a needle and thread. A sewing machine is helpful but not required, especially if you are making a small pillow. You can purchase the fabric or you can knit or crochet the fabric yourself.

  • Instead of purchasing pillow stuffing at the store, make your own stuffing from materials around the house. Use leftover fabric scraps, cut into small pieces, or cut old pantyhose or socks into rings and use for stuffing.
  • Make a therapeutic pillow filled with rice or buckwheat. These pillows can be warmed in the microwave and used on the neck, feet or hands.
  • To save money, purchase fabric remnants for your pillow craft. You will not need a lot of fabric.
  • Instead of purchasing a fancy print fabric, purchase a small amount of plain white fabric or canvas and embellish with fabric paint. You can stamp, stencil or even use a rolling pin with glued cardboard shapes to create a repeating design on your fabric.

Here is how to sew a pillow from scratch: Place the two pieces of fabric right sides together (the sides that will show). Sew with a ¼ inch seam allowance all the way around, leaving a small gap for stuffing. Turn inside out, stuff and stitch the gap closed.

Pocket Pillows

Sentimental Shirt to Pillow

How to crochet a pillow from scratch: If you are not using a pillow form, you will need a tight crochet stitch for your pillow so that the stuffing does not show. Use single crochet to create a tight, sturdy material. Many crochet patterns will have you create a decorative side edge, such as with a picot stitch or lace stitch.

Easy Patio Pillows

Crochet Kneeling Garden Cushion

How to knit a pillow from scratch: Like with crochet, you will want to use a tight stitch for your pillow squares. Stripes are a popular motif in knit pillow patterns. A knitting loom can make knitting a pillow quick and easy.

Loom Pattern: Stripe Floor Pillow Cover

Houndstooth Knit Pillow

After you crochet or knit your two pillow squares, you could felt the material to create a soft and sturdy material. Felting erases any imperfections. Remember that felting will shrink the squares so you will need to make then bigger to start. You will also need to use a wool yarn appropriate  for felting.

Check back next week for easier crafts: How to make a Pillow Cover, starting with a pillow form, and How to Make a Pillow with Embellishments, starting with a pillow blank.

Don’t forget to check out 32 Pillow Making Crafts.

Home Decor Tuesday: Patterns from Our Sister Site

Some of you may or may not know this, but we have a new sister site called AllFreeCrochet a website dedicated to the best free crochet patterns, tutorials, tips and articles on crochet. Find all varieties and skills levels, from easy to crochet afghan patterns to complex Tunisian crochet patterns. All the patterns on this site are truly amazing and you can make whatever you wish.

Decorating your home with crochet patterns leaves you with many options. You can get your crochet hook out and get crafty. One of my favorite home decor crochet patterns is jute cord door mat. This is an easy crochet pattern anyone can make. It sets the tone for your living room or walk-in area. Welcome your guests with a lovely crochet pattern.

Here are some more home decorating ideas:

Accent Rug
Racetrack Rug
Loop Flower Rug

Cozy Cottage Crochet Popcorn Pillow
Petal Pillows

Crochet Work Basket
Recycled CD Rolled Edge Basket