23. Januar 2014

DIY: Patchwork pillow case made from free IKEA fabric samples

When I first saw that "our" IKEA (the one we're visiting quite regularly) had a new corner installed, filled with fabric samples for all sofa covers available... Can you guess my reaction?
My brother was with me that day on his very first trip to an IKEA store ever and he had to witness my muffled scream "Free fabrics!!!", the crazy eyes and my immediate plans to rob IKEA off their full stock of samples to make a huge bed cover. Thank god crazy runs in our family and he was willing to help! We decided to proceed cautiously to not attract too much attention.  - Okay, well, we still took so many samples we could stuff into our pockets and my handbag (We were really interested in all the options we had for our new sofa cover...of course.). So many fabrics and leather and velvet! I was in heaven.
The bed cover had to be postponed, however. You'd need a whole cart full of samples for that one. But my brother's birthday was coming up and on his visit he mentioned something of how much he likes pillows (I was more than surprised to hear that as his flat looks more like a workshop than a cozy home). So what better to give him for his birthday than a pillow made from the fabric samples he helped to steal collect.

So, here we go!
[1] Step one: Go to IKEA and get a bunch of fabric samples.
[2] Get rid of the paper. The samples are almost square sized (6cm x 6,5cm) so I didn't bother to cut anything. So easy!
[3] I wanted the pillow case to be colorful and use all the different types of fabrics. Leather, velvet and all! So after mixing all my samples together I made a pile on my desk and started sewing them together always taking the topmost two pieces at a time.
[4] After that I sewed the pairs together to get the rows of the pillow. I wanted the pillow case to be 45cm x 45cm so I each row is made of I think 9 fabric pieces and to make it a square pillow case there have to be 9 rows accordingly.
Iron each row flat before proceeding but be careful with the faux leather pieces! They don't like the direct contact with a hot iron at all. I had to learn that the hard way...
[5] Now sew the rows together. Front side finished!
[6] I chose to make the back side of the pillow case from a single piece of sturdy IKEA fabric (Which I bought!). I just didn't have enough patience and samples for a patchwork back side.
The fabric measures about 50cm x 50cm so you have some seam allowance.

And this is where I stopped taking pictures. Hmm.

[7] However. Put the two pieces right sides facing and sew around three sides. Insert a zipper into the fourth. Turn right sides out if you haven't already for the zipper. Put a pillow inside. Magic!

My brother loved it. LOVED it. And every time he sees it he'll remember his first trip to IKEA and how we stuffed our pockets with fabric samples feeling slightly like we were doing something illegal. Which I hope it wasn't. Because it's on the Internet now.


  1. Your pillow is gorgeous, I love it too. And the story with it also :-)
    Greetings from Luxemburg

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