After buying new cushions for my patio furniture this summer, I had these old pillows left over. They didn’t match the new cushions, so I didn’t want to use them on the patio, but they were still in good shape, so I didn’t want to throw them out. I figured I’d hang on to them for a while and wait for inspiration to strike.
In the meantime, I “temporarily” tossed the pillows on the dining room floor one day, where Calvin promptly discovered them and claimed them as his own.
Calvin’s two favorite things in life are soft cushions and sunny windows, so finding one in such close proximity to the other made his day. And his next day. And his day after that… Fortunately for Calvin, I didn’t have a plan for the cushions yet, so they stayed on the dining room floor for quite a while.
Finally, months later, I read a post on Censational Girl’s blog called “Easiest Pillow Covers Ever,” in which she made envelope pillows with ONE piece of fabric. She’s probably not the first person in the world to invent the one-piece envelope pillow, but it was the first I’d heard of it. Whenever I’ve made envelope pillows before, I’ve always used three pieces: one for the front and two that overlapped in the back.
As someone who loves the idea of sewing but who possesses only rudimentary sewing skills, I was giddy with the possibilities. If I did the math correctly — unfortunately my math skills are roughly on par with my sewing skills — I figured this new one-piece method would involve approximately two-thirds less sewing.
In a fit of inspiration, I remembered an old nubby bedspread that I had bought at a thrift store a while back even though I didn’t have a bed to spread it on. At the time, I just loved the texture. Now I knew what I was going to do with it: cut it up into one-piece pillowcases for Calvin’s pillows.
In a rare moment when Calvin wasn’t around, I picked up the pillows and snipped the buttons off of them. Then I laid the bedspread out on the floor to start measuring and cutting.
I had barely gotten started when he showed up and proceeded to move from whichever pillow I was attempting to work on to whichever pillow I was attempting to work on. He’s helpful that way.
Fortunately, I knew his kryptonite: dangly tape measures.
After successfully luring him off of the pillows and onto the other side of the bedspread, I measured out the pillowcases. I wanted the pieces to be the same height as the pillows but about six inches longer, so the fabric would overlap in the back.
I measured, marked and cut the pillowcases.
Then I wrapped the cases around the pillows to make sure they would fit. When I was confident that I had cut the pieces to the right size, I turned the fabric inside out and marked with pins where I was going to sew.
All I had to do was hem the raw edge and then sew seams across the top and bottom. Easy peasy.
Or at least it would have been if my assistant didn’t keep coming back and sitting on my work surface.
Eventually I got all the pieces up off the floor and ran them through my sewing machine.
Once I had the raw edges hemmed and the seams sewn, I turned the pillowcases right side out, and I was done. Here’s the back.
And here’s the front.
When the cases were all sewn, I stuffed the pillows inside.
Each case looks a little different because I used different parts of the bedspread for each one.
I put the pillows on the couch for now. I haven’t decided if they’ll live there permanently or if I’ll put them on a bed. Either location will be an improvement over the dining room floor. (And look: Calvin found a new sunny window to lay in.)
In case you’re wondering, here’s my next project…
… or more accurately, here’s our next project. (Sigh.)
I love vintage office chairs, but I want to replace the worn orange fabric and pleather with something a little nicer.