Earlier this week I showed you a quick DIY envelope pillow tutorial, and today I’m going to show you an easy DIY felt pillow tutorial.
This is the felt pillow I made for my window seat.
So I decided I wanted a pillow in the embrace pattern by Premier Prints.
photo from Etsy
I so love that pattern! Their fabric is quite affordable too so that wasn’t the problem. The problem was I wanted it in a cranberry red color and they don’t make it in red.
Bummed, I kept looking for another pillow that had a cranberry red and white modern pattern, but I just couldn’t find anything I liked. I really wanted that embrace pattern!
So I decided to make it myself using the oldest trick in the book: felt.
To start, you need a pillow insert with a plain pillow cover. You can either buy the cover or make it yourself by following this tutorial. If you’re going to make it then you may not want to completely sew your pillow cover together until you’ve sewed on your felt first. That will probably make it easier to attach the felt.
My plan was to pick up some plain white fabric and a pillow insert for an 18” x 18” pillow from my local fabric store and make an envelope pillow.
But before I ever made it to the fabric store, I stopped by HomeGoods looking for some other items I needed, and I happened to find a plain white pillow that worked perfectly for this project and was a great price. It was the right size: 18” x 18”. It obviously included the insert which was a nice down one. And the cover was removable—a necessity for being able to sew the felt on. Have I mentioned I love me some HomeGoods?
I picked up some cranberry red felt from the local Joann’s store and got it on sale for a couple dollars. While I was there I picked out some thread that matched the felt perfectly. That was important because that would help the stitching blend with the felt once it was attached to the pillow.
In order to make the embrace pattern, I looked for the highest resolution image I could find online of one of the pieces of the embrace fabric.
I printed it out on my home printer and checked the scale compared to the size of my pillow. I could quickly see it was too small.
So I used Photoshop to increase the size of the image and print it out larger. If you don’t own Photoshop then you can use a copier to enlarge your pattern and reprint it.
I now needed my pattern on an 18” x 18” piece of paper so that it would be the same size as my pillow, but my standard printer only prints up to legal size paper. So I ended up printing out my pattern in sections.
Then I trimmed off the edges of the paper with an x-acto knife and taped the pieces together.
With my pattern made, I pinned it to the felt and cut along the edges of the pattern. I now had a piece of felt the right size for my pillow.
In order to attach it to the pillow I planned to use a sewing machine. However, the pattern I had chosen for my felt would go all the way to the edges of my pillow in some areas and after talking it over with my mom we realized that it was going to be really hard to sew the pattern along the very edges due to the fact the cover was already fully assembled and the sewing machine would only be able to reach so far.
At that point I knew I could either sew the felt on by hand or disassemble my pillow cover so it would lay flat and I could use the machine to attach the felt. Then I could resew the edges of the pillow cover back together after the felt was attached. I was leaning towards just sewing it by hand, but I was worried that my stitches would look really uneven.
I decided to give it a go and focus on making really small stitches (I could always undo my stitching and go to plan B if need be). Not too far in I realized it really didn’t look as bad as I thought it would. May I remind you sewing is not my forte and I try to avoid it, so considering that I was pretty happy with how it looked.
The only problem was how long it was taking to sew both edges of the whole pattern. I put a movie on Netflix and hunkered down with my needle and thread.
I am glad I did because I’m really happy with how it turned out.
The great thing about making a felt pillow is you can customize it to any design or color you want.
Here are some other people’s felt pillow designs to inspire and admire…