Friday, February 19, 2010

ruffle pillow tutorial

i am going to take you through the steps to making your very own ruffle pillow first, here are the supplies you will need:

1 18-19 inch pillow form
a rolled hem foot for your sewing machine
fabric: 1 - 20x20 inch square of white cotton for front
2 - 20x17 inch rectangles of white cotton for back
4 - 40x5.5 inch strips of white cotton for the ruffles

1. back: first prepare the 2 rectangles that will be the back flaps of your pillow. fold one of the 20 inch sides of each rectangle over 1 inch and iron, fold over again and iron.

you will be left with 2 rectangles that now look like this:
sew along the folded edge of each one. set aside for later.

2.ruffles: take your 4 long strips of fabric and hem one long side of each one using your rolled hem foot. i had never used this foot until this and i am now in love with it! what was i thinking letting it sit there not being used!?!

once you have hemmed one side of all 4 strips you will now do the gathers. set your machine to the highest stitch length, this is also called a basting stitch. line up your presser foot with the raw edge side of the long strip of ruffle fabric, leaving a nice long tail of tread out of your needle (which you will need to pull to make gathers after) finish off by pulling the thread out a few inches again to leave some thread at that end as well. now, using the same stitch length, go back and stitch another line 1/8 -1/4 inch further in from the first one. leaving a tail of thread at each end again. do this to all 4 strips.

take the two bottom threads on one side and pull them while gathering the fabric down. do the same on the other side until your fabric is 20 inches across, at this point tie the 2 bottom threads that you have been pulling to the two top thread that should still be shorter. even out the gathers. (note: this picture is not showing the right strip for this pillow, your gathers will not be in the middle, they will be on one of the sides! sorry)
now, i like to sew over the gathers with a regular stitch length to secure them. of course, do this to all 4 strips.
you will now be left with 4 gathered strips that are 20 inches long each.
3. applying ruffles: starting about 1 inch from the top, pin one strip of ruffles with the right side facing down and the hemmed edge up. you will be flipping them down after they are sewn.

continue to pin all 4 rows or ruffles on the same way about 4 1/2 inches away. remember to have the right side facing down (meaning, the nice side of the hemmed edge facing down)
you need them far enough away from each other that one ruffle will just barely cover the start of the next ruffle, although you won't be able to see this until they are flipped down.
at the bottom you will want a little more space left (like 6 or 7 inches if totally fine.) once the pillow has the pillow form in it it will look better if there isn't a ruffle there. (i used 5 ruffles on the one pictures below and the last ruffle doesn't look great)

using a regular straight stitch stitch on all of the ruffles, making sure to stitch slightly further than the gathering stitches so you will not see them when the ruffle is flipped over.
flip over all of the gathers and iron them down. this is a very important step, as it will make the ruffles look way cuter, trust me!

4. assemble the pillow cover: turn the top ruffled piece of the pillow over and stitch the ruffles down. as you can see in the picture you may let some of the gathered fabric hang over and just trim it off later.

trim off any excess ruffles that didn't get sewed on.

if needs be, pin up any ruffle that may get sewn over when you are sewing the back and the front together. (note: remember i used 5 ruffles so you shouldn't have a ruffle this close to the bottom)
get one of the back rectangles that you sewed very first and lay it over the ruffles. make sure the right sides are facing each other and that the hemmed side is in the middle of the ruffles. pin in place.

now, lay the other rectangle over top of the first one, again, with the right side down and the hemmed side on the middle of the pillow.

sew a 1/2 inch stitch all the way around making sure to back stitch at beginning and end. go around the whole pillow case again with a serger or a zigzag stitch to encase all the raw edges.
turn your now pillow case the right side out through the back flaps, put a pillow form inside and enjoy your new luscious ruffles!


Shawna said...

If I found some solids in the colors of Megan's quilt, I could make a couple of these for her bed. Fun, fun, fun. I have such a creative sister!

Sew Much Ado said...

Great tute Ang! Rufflicious!

Hi I'm Amy, said...


mom said...

Love the pillow angie!- I once made a curtain that looked like that- in the olden days!

casserole said...

This is such a pretty pillow! I love all those rows of ruffles!!

I linked to your tutorial at Craft Gossip Sewing:


whimsy*couture*sewing*tutorials said...

Just letting you know that I posted this fantastic tutorial on my blog
Thank you for sharing! :)

The Lowry's said...

I might have to try one of these. Would be so cute in pink in my daughters room. Thanks

Anonymous said...

Thank you for such a cute idea! I just found your site and will return for more great ideas. Keep up the good work!

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