How to Sew a Festive Pillow for the Holidays

You love the holidays. You love your pets. Show your love by sewing a festive holiday pillow featuring your favorite furry companions.

Photo by: Sara Alavi

Sara Alavi

Materials Needed

  • 1/2 yard holiday fabric
  • parchment paper
  • (2) yards faux fur trim
  • iron-on transfer paper and iron
  • ric rac ribbon
  • polyester fiberfill
  • tape measure
  • needle and thread
  • scissors
  • sewing machine
  • color inkjet printer

Step 1: Cut the Fabric

Photo by: Sara Alavi

Sara Alavi

Measure and cut fabric into two 14" x 14" squares.

Step 2: Transfer Picture Onto Fabric

Photo by: Sara Alavi

Sara Alavi

Choose your favorite pet, family or friend picture, and print it on iron-on transfer paper. If you are printing on darker fabrics, be sure to buy transfer paper specifically for darker fabrics. Once you print, follow the instructions included on how to transfer onto fabric. Most will require you to place the picture side down onto the fabric. Place parchment paper over the transfer paper, and use a hot iron (no steam) to iron the image onto your paper. Tip: Most iron-on transfer papers work best with inkjet printers. If you have a laser printer, most screen print shops will print on transfer paper for you.

Step 3: Attach Ric Rac Ribbon

Add an extra touch by framing your picture with ric rac trim. Pin the ric rac ribbon around the picture starting at one corner (Image 1). When you reach the corners, fold the ribbon at a 90-degree angle to continue framing the picture (Image 2). When you reach where you started, cut the ribbon with an extra 1/4-inch allowance, and fold under the ribbon for a finished edge (Image 3). Once you finish pinning the ribbon, sew the ribbon securely onto the fabric (Image 4).

Step 4: Pin Faux Fur Trim

With the fabric right side up, attach the faux fur trim with the fur closer to the center of the fabric square, and line the fabric part of the trim with the edge of the fabric square. Pin trim into place (Image 1). For corners, cut three slits into the trim to allow for a smoother curve (Image 2). Continue pinning the trim into place on all four sides (Image 3). Tip: Place the pins perpendicular to allow for easier removal while sewing.

Step 5: Sew the Pillow

Place the second fabric square, pattern side down, on top of the square with the faux fur trim attached. Pin the fabric squares together with the faux fur trim between them (Image 1). Sew the four sides together with a 1/2-inch seam allowance, leaving a 4-inch opening on one of the sides (Image 2).

Step 6: Stuff the Pillow

Trim the seam allowance down to 1/4-inch, and cut the corners of the pillow to prevent bunching when you turn the pillow inside out. Be careful not to cut any of the stitches. Pull the pillow through the 4-inch opening to pull it right side out. Start filling the pillow with stuffing. Take small sections of the filling, and fluff before putting it into the pillow so you don’t end up with a lumpy pillow. To do this, pull the pieces of filling apart to break up the fibers. To get the filling into the corners, use a stuffing tool (included in the fiberfill bag, or use a chopstick). Apply gentle pressure to press the filling into the corners, taking care not to press too hard. Continue to fill the pillow until you achieve the desired firmness.

Step 7: Sew Opening

Photo by: Sara Alavi

Sara Alavi

Fold the edges of the 4-inch opening into the pillow, and pin into place. Then, sew the opening to finish the pillow.

Photo by: Sara Alavi

Sara Alavi

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