They are great for decoration, can be used to help relieve a stiff neck, provide lumbar support, for propping up to watch TV and as the ultimate pillow fighter.
This is a simple craft suitable for kids to make around ages 10 and up with basic sewing skills using straight, zigzag and top stitching.
Step 1: Materials
1/3 -1/4 Yard Fabric, depending on pillow size
Stuffing or a Quilt Batting
Drawstrings or Bias Tape, made or purchased
Step 2: Plan Your Fabric Cuts
To get the diameter of your stuffing or quilt roll wrap a tape measure around the entire round area being careful not to squeeze the roll. If using a quilt batting get the height by measuring on the end from the bottom to top and length by measuring end to end.
Calculate the measurement of the fabric to be cut like this:
Fabric Length - (20 inches) plus the diameter (20 inches), plus 1 inch for the hem = 41 inches (my measurements).
Fabric Width - diameter (20 inches) plus 1 inch = 21 inches (my measurements).
Bow or Drawstring - pillow diameter (20 inches) plus 10 inches = 30 inches.
To make this pillow I will need a 41 x 21 inch piece of cut fabric for the pillow and two 30 x 2 1/2 inch cuts of fabric for the bows.
Note: These are the measurements used for this project, unless you are using the same stuffing (poly-fill brand, 1 lb package.) or a quilt batting you will need to figure your own dimensions.
The finished pillow size is about 36 inches long.
For a larger diameter pillow double the width and use 2 bags of stuffing, the length remains the same.
For shorter pillows reduce length to 24 inches, use half a bag of stuffing, the width remains the same.
Step 3: Make Bow or Drawstring Guides
Turn your fabric and press over a 2 1/2 inch guide (1/4 inch for drawstrings or whatever fits the bows/drawstrings you will be using) on both short sides of the fabric.
Straight stitch staying close to the edge of the hem. This stitch will form the sleeve for the drawstrings, it is very important not to let the opening get too narrow. If necessary remove stitching and try again.
Step 4: Make the Bow or Drawstrings
Take the 30 x 2 1/2 inch bow pieces with right sides together stitch a 1/4 inch seam, trim or zigzag stitch the edge. On one end of the bow attach a large safety pin, turn it to the inside of the bow.
While holding the pin push the fabric onto it and pull it down. Repeat until the bow is turned right side out. An alternative is to fold the edge over and use a dowel rod to push the fabric down until it is right side out.
Align the seam to the center and press flat. Turn the raw edges to the inside, pin and topstitch all the way around the bow piece as close to the edge as possible.
Step 5: The Finishing Touch
With right sides together fold the fabric in half lengthwise (top to bottom) and stitch between the bow guides to form the circle. Use care not to stitch the bow guides. Turn the pillow cover right side out, tighten and tie off one end.
Stuff the pillow to your desired firmness, these instructions provide for a medium firm pillow. A quilt batting makes an extra firm pillow.
Slide the batting in with the plastic bag still intact then slide the bag out.
Center and adjust the stuffing or batting. Pull up the bow strings closing the ends and tie a pretty bow.