Creative articles about sewing

Denim pillow with storage space, part 2

I’ve started this fun and easy-to-make envelope style pillow cover on March 24 on this BERNINA Blog: preparing all pieces by cutting them and couching/embellishing them. Now I will assemble the pieces to make the pollow cover.

The (inner) pillow measures 40x40cm. The front and back of the pillow cover should be 40x40cm + seam allowances = 42x42cm. 

The pieces of denim I have embellished are ready for assembly. I have sewn a strip with fringe to the left of the square with the back pocket. I will place all seam allowances on top of each other, instead of sewing regular seams: denim is a thick fabric. To avoid even thicker seams, placing them on top of each other, and sewing this down, makes them flat.   

Because the pieces with the fringes have to stand out, I have used the seam allowance (with the fringes at the end) as overlay: placing them on top/over the pocket piece, which is underneath. The overlap is aprox 1 1/2 cm. I have glued it in place (using my Bohin Glue pen again), and made a row of decorative stitches to secure the seams with my BERNINA 770QE. This will hold perfectly and lies flat.

I have used lockstitches via my serger BERNINA Overlock 1300MDC, to finish seams on both sides of the fringed pieces. To make sure the stitches are even, I have made a sample (I always do!).

My serger is always ‘ready’ to use whenever I need to finish a seam. Having to unpack a machine, installing it etc. takes too much time for quick use. Not everyone has enough space to leave their machines at a table, but luckely I do: my studio is my workspace, with multiple machines for all purposes.

Both sides of the patchwork/denim pieces are finished with lockstitches. They are decorative too, so I want them to stand out 

The large denim piece with the ribbons will be placed underneath the patchwork/denim pieces, to show the lockstitches. Again, using my Bohin Glue pen to secure the overlap, and then stitching it down.  

Because I am sewing close to/ almost over thick seams of the back pocket, I have used the height compensation plates. This tool will make all the difference! Placed under the presser foot before and after you have sewn over the thickest part of the seam, this tool will assist the the presser foot to remain even and retain its connection to the feed dogs. Because the pocket is to the left of my presser foot, I have placed 2 layers of the height compensation plates to the right, just underneath the presser foot. It works great.

With another piece of denim I have added a piece of bright colored yellow quilt fabric, a strip of 4 cm, glued it down with my Bohin Glue pen and locked the side seam. Adding a few decorative stitches, specially to the left of this yellow strip of fabric, makes this stand out. And adding more small ribbons with the Braiding foot #21. 

I have sewn this piece of denim to the right side of the patchwork pieces. Cutting it back to 42 inches = size of the pillow cover.

Another piece of denim with ribbon is sewn underneath the it all, cutting the now complete top of the pillow cover back tot 42x42cm. 

BACK with ENVELOPE ENCLOSURE: Two large pieces of denim are cut to 31 x 42 cm. I will make the envelope overlap aprox. 10 cm. It can be slightly larger if you want to, but too much overlap will make it difficult to place the pillow into the cover, specially because denim is a bit stiffer than other fabrics.  

Finishing the raw edge of the denim pieces with lockstitches, means I don’t have thick seams here too. Overlapping them for the envelope enclosure, securing the sides halfway the seam allowance without any pins (again, using my Bohin Glue pen) and stitching them down.

I have placed the pillow front and back together, right sides facing (making sure the overlap is pointing downwards), pinning the sides with quilting pins. 

The corners are trimmed diagonally to reduce bulk,

I have locked all sides to prevent fraying.

The pillow cover is turned inside out, corners gently pushed outwards. I’ve inserted the pillow and my work is done!

I have placed the pillow on our couch, for a foto shoot. My husband needed a place for his paper handkerchiefs, and put them in the pocket of the pillow. Smart guy!

You can put anything (small enough) in there, like stuffed animals or a small book. Even you cell phone…. it’s an all-purpose pillow!


See you next time,

Sylvia Kaptein
Sylvia’s Art Quilts Studio

Free sewing instructions: Denim pillow with storage space

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