Gathered Pillow Tutorial

Ladies, I got news for ya.  I don’t think ruffles are going away any time soon.  At least not in my house they’re not :).  I love the feminity that a simple ruffle or gather can bring to any project.  And trust me, living with three boys, I need all the feminity that I can get!  I smile everytime I look at my new pillow.  I take that back — I don’t smile when I’m watching it be jumped on and thrown around by my boys.  Definitely not a smile in that case.  Good thing this pillow can be washed.  On that note…
Let’s get started…
For Pillow Front:
     printed fabric: 2 – 4″x9″ pieces
                           2 – 4″x15″ pieces
     plain fabric (will be ruffled middle section): 1- 9″x18″ piece
For Pillow Back:
     printed fabric: 2 – 12″x15″ pieces
14″ pillow form

*All seam allowances are 1/2″ unless otherwise noted.*
1. Using a gathering or basting stitch (longest stitch length on your machine), stitch along each entire 18″ edge on plain fabric.  Do not backstitch at beginning or end of stitching.
2. Pulling on TOP THREAD ONLY,  gather one 18″ side of plain fabric until it is 9″ long.  Pin gathered edge to right side of 4″x9″ piece, along 9″ edge.

3. Gather opposite side of plain fabric, and pin gathered edge to right side of the other 4″x9″ piece, along 9″ edge.

Tip:  Before adjusting the gathers, I like to loosely pin my gathered piece to the printed fabric, and then do the final adjustment to ensure the gathers are evenly spaced.  Instead of tying the threads off, I wrap the loose thread ends around the end pin several times to temporarily secure them.  That way they can be easily undone and re-adjusted if needed :).

4. Following gathered stitch line, stitch ruffled fabric to printed fabric pieces.

5. Turn all right sides outward.

6. Press seams toward printed fabric.  This is the beginning of your pillow front.

7. Right sides together, pin 15″ edge of one 4″x15″ piece to one long edge of pillow front.
8. Right sides together, pin 15″ edge of second 4″x15″ piece to other long edge of pillow front.
9. Stitch pieces together along pinned edges.
10. Press seams toward outer edges of pillow front.

11. Lightly press gathered piece to slightly flatten ruffled area.
12. To form back of pillow, press 12″ edge of one 12″x15″ piece 1″ toward wrong side.  Turn another 1″ toward wrong side and press.
13. Stitch close to folded edge.
14. Repeat steps 12-13 with second 12″x15″ piece.
15. Right sides together, pin one pillow back piece to pillow front, matching raw edges.
16. Position second pillow back piece over pillow front and already-pinned back piece.  Pin in place.
17. Stitch around ENTIRE pillow edges.  Stitch around entire pillow again for stability.
18. Clip four corners of pillow.
19. Turn pillow right side out.  Poke corners with a dull pencil if needed.
20. Slide pillow form through opening in back of pillow cover.
Get a good book and curl up in your favorite chair with your new pillow!

I’ll be linking to a few of these linky parties!

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  1. I love pillows and i love ruffles love love this pillow
    Hmm might sew this today actually off to my sewing room it is :)
    Thanks for the tutorial

  2. Oh, I just love me a pillow cover. And once I discovered the envelope closure, I have REALLY been hooked. I have a few pillows on my to do list. I may just incorporate your idea.

  3. Gosh, I’m so glad I found your website today! AND I’m flippin’ happy to hear that ruffles aren’t going away! I luv thems! I’m happy to be your newest follower. :o)

  4. i made these yesterday and i love them! you did an excellent job with the tutorial. only needed to read it once and i was off and running. thanks!

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