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Patchwork Pillow Trio in Tula Pink's De La Luna

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Fussy. Cut. We love to have our way with fabric, manipulating it to best showcase motifs and colors. Clever fussy cutting allows you to tell a story with your project. And when you’re working with fabric as amazingly detailed as De La Luna by Tula Pink for FreeSpirit Fabrics, the options are endless. We’ve created a trio of patchwork pillows that bring the Halloween spirit of this collection to life. Full cutting and piecing instructions are given below for our square, rectangle, and hexagonal set. We worked with fat quarters, but you could also easily start with regular yardage cuts. 

We started swooning over Tula Pink’s De La Luna collection as soon as we glimpsed a few sneak peeks of the drawings at Market. So, when some fat quarter bundles landed at our doorstep from FreeSpirit Fabrics, we were over the moon (did you see how we rhymed swoon and moon right there?). As with all of Tula’s fabric, this collection began getting snapped up as soon as it started landing on online and in-store shelves, but you can still find good selections; we have a number of retailer links below for you to browse.

If you’re a Tula fan, you may remember the Von Black sisters from her previous Night Shade collection. The three gorgeous girls of De La Luna are distant cousins with their own magical powers. Our set features middle sister, Magnolia, staring mesmerizingly out from the largest pillow. She draws her power from the spirits of earth and bloom, which is immediately evident by her stunning floral crown.

Keeping the sisters company are an eclectic collection of Halloween creatures: skeleton butterflies, sugar skulls, unblinking eyes, and bats on the wing. Although released especially for Halloween, we found all the fabric to be hauntingly beautiful enough to use year ‘round.

When you spot something within a fabric's motif and decide to cut it in a way that will precisely capture a specific section for a specific purpose, that's called fussy cutting. This includes when you meticulously line up a fabric's pattern so you don't see a seam, maintain a fabric’s print around a shape, or cut and re-sew pieces of fabric to create a "new" print. This perfect placement is often what creates the "WOW" factor in a project. We show you all our selections in detail below, but you are – as always – encouraged to experiment with your own combinations. For more about fussy cutting, check out our tips and tricks tutorial.

One important factor in fussy cutting is to pay very close attention to your directional motifs when cutting as well as assembling. Many of the De La Luna fabrics are directional. Some that might seem random at first glance, such as the Batty bats, moons, and stars, are actual directional. Although perhaps rather scary, upside down bats are not what the De La Luna sisters are looking for! Check twice (or even three times) before both cutting and sewing.

Each of our pillows is outlined with ⅜” piping and two of the three feature pretty tassel accents. The slightly shiny floss seemed a perfect embellishment for this Halloween infused collection. It sways and shimmers like a spider’s web in the dusky twilight.

Two pillows use standard pillow forms, but the more unique hexagonal shape is custom made with polyester fiberfill. We created all three as sewn-closed pillows rather than pillow covers, which means they are meant to be spot cleaned for carefully laundered. But you could certainly slightly adapt the cuts for the rectangle and square pillow to make the back panels into a traditional envelope overlapped closure – highly shaped pillows, like the hexagon are really best as stuffed pillows.

As mentioned above, Tula’s collection are almost always instant sell-outs, and since we are rolling right into Halloween season, these fabrics are already starting to disappear. We found good selections available at Fat Quarter Shop, Fabric.com, Hawthorne Supply Company, and Hancock’s of Paducah.

Our thanks to Tula Pink and FreeSpirit fabrics for sharing this beautiful collection with us. We’d love to see your finished pillows. Tag us all in social media with your De La Luna beauties.

Our De La Luna pillow trio finishes at approximately 16” x 20” rectangle, 16” x 16” square, and 18” in diameter hexagonal. All of these sizes exclude the piping.

Sewing Tools You Need

Fabric and Other Supplies

NOTE:  For all our pillows we worked with two fat quarters of each selected fabric in order to get the best fussy cuts. This is why we suggest ½ yard cuts of each fabric in the supplies listed below. As always, we suggest reading through the actual cut sizes in the Getting Started section in order to understand exactly what you need. Although these pillows are designed specifically for De La Luna, you can – of course – select any fabric you love. If your fabric’s motifs are smaller and/or more random, you may be able to get away with smaller yardage cuts. We do show our fussy cutting steps and tips below, but for more detail about the technique, check out our tips and tricks tutorial.

16” x 20” Rectangle Pillow

  • Two Fat Quarters or ½ yard cuts of THREE coordinating 44”+ wide quilting weight cottons; from the Tula Pink De La Luna collection, we used Possessed in Spirit (beautiful Magnolia), I See You in Spirit (the bright pink eyes), and Batty in Phantom (bats and moons and stars - oh my)
  • ½ yard of 20”+ wide lightweight fusible interfacing; we used Pellon Shir-Tailor
  • ½ yard of 20”+ wide fusible fleece; we used Pellon Thermolam Plus
  • 2¼ yards of ” cotton piping cord
  • 16” x 20” pillow form

16” x 16” Square Pillow

  • Two Fat Quarters or ½ yard cuts of THREE coordinating 44”+ wide quilting weight cottons; from the Tula Pink De La Luna collection, we used Venus in Haunted (skeleton butterflies and flowers), I See You in Haunted (the bright turquoise eyes), and Batty in Haunted (bats and moons and stars - oh my)
  • ½ yard of 20”+ wide lightweight fusible interfacing; we used Pellon Shir-Tailor
  • ½ yard of 20”+ wide fusible fleece; we used Pellon Thermolam Plus
  • 2 yards of ” cotton piping cord
  • TWO 1” button cover kits for the center tuft; we used Dritz button cover kits
  • FOUR skeins of pearl cotton embroidery floss in a complimentary color for the corner tassels; we used metallic gray blue
  • Tapestry needle for floss
  • 16” x 16” pillow form

18” Hexagonal Pillow

  • Two Fat Quarters or ½ yard cuts of THREE coordinating 44”+ wide quilting weight cottons; from the Tula Pink De La Luna collection, we used Sugar Skulls in Clairvoyant (bright pink), Sugar Skulls in Oracle (deep purple), and Venus in Spirit (skeleton butterflies and flowers)
  • ⅝ yard of 20”+ wide lightweight fusible interfacing; we used Pellon Shir-Tailor
  • ⅝ yard of 20”+ wide fusible fleece; we used Pellon Thermolam Plus
  • 1¾ yards of ” cotton piping cord
  • TWO ” solid color buttons for the center tuft; we used two black buttons – shank for the front and two-hole for the back
  • THREE skeins of pearl cotton embroidery floss in a complimentary color for the center triple tassel; we used metallic light gray
  • Tapestry needle for floss
  • Medium bag of polyester filler

All Pillows

  • All purpose thread to match fabric
  • Iron and ironing board
  • See-through ruler
  • Fabric pen or pencil
  • Seam gauge
  • Seam ripper
  • Scissors 
  • Rotary cutter and mat
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Straight pins
  • Hand sewing needle

Getting Started & Pattern/Template Downloads

16” x 20” Rectangle Pillow

  1. The finished size of the center panel featuring the De La Luna sister should be 10½” wide x 14½” high. If the placement of the sister you wish to feature is not correct on the pre-cut or yardage you have, you can fussy cut two pieces and seam them together, which is exactly what we did. 
  2. Find the most complete motif on your fabric. On ours, this was one of images of sister Magnolia; it had just a bit of the bottom frame missing. Measure to find the exact center. Notice that the exact center of the frame may not be the exact center of the girl’s face.
  3. Using the center as your guideline, cut the 10½” width.
  4. Next you will need to find a matching piece on the remaining fabric to fill in the missing section. You can trace the motif onto tissue paper and slide the paper over the remaining fabric until you find an exact match, or – when dealing with a larger motif like our beautiful girls, you can usually simply spot the matching area and fold the fabric, rolling the fold until the two sections align. 
  5. Pin the new piece to your cut piece and press flat. You need to press hard enough to set a visible crease line.
  6. Without moving the fabric, open up the fold so the two pieces are fully right sides together. Re-pin. Double check from the right side to insure your pattern match hasn’t shifted.
  7. Sew along the crease.
  8. Trim away excess fabric to a ¼” seam allowance. Press flat.
  9. Find the center top to bottom, then trim to 14½” high.
  10. From the remaining Possessed in Spirit fabric, fussy cut the SIX 4½” wide x 2½” high pieces needed for the side panel patchwork. We cut the TWO center pieces to isolate two of the eye motifs.
  11. The remaining FOUR corner pieces were fussy cut to isolate matching flourish areas from the frames.
  12. From the fabric for the top and bottom borders, the side patchwork panels, and the pillow back (Batty in Phantom in our sample), fussy cut the following (as noted above, the bats within this motif are directional, be careful with direction when cutting):
    FOUR 4½” wide x 5½” high rectangles for the side panels
    TWO 12½” wide x 1½” high strips for the top and bottom borders
    ONE 20½” wide x 16½” high rectangle for the back panel
  13. From the fabric for the side borders and the piping (I See You in Spirit in our sample), fussy cut the following – centering the eyes within all the strips; as with the bats, the eyes are also directional:
    TWO 1½” wide  x 14½” high strips for the side borders
    Enough 2” strips (eyes centered) to equal 72” in finished length for the piping; we cut 4 strips
  14. From the fusible fleece, cut ONE 20” x 16” panel.
  15. From the lightweight interfacing, cut ONE 20” x 16” panel.

16” x 16” Square Pillow

  1. Download and print the Corner Triangle Pattern.
    IMPORTANT: This pattern download consists of ONE 8½" x 11" sheet. You must print the PDF file at 100%. DO NOT SCALE to fit the page. There is a guide rule on the sheet to confirm your printout is to scale.
  2. Cut out the two pieces along the solid lines. Butt together the two pieces at the arrows as indicated. Do not overlap. Tape together to form the complete Triangle pattern.
  3. In addition to the printed pattern, we suggest making an additional template for the center square in order to get the proper angle on the eyes. To do this, create a 11⅞” square from any paper.
  4. Fold this paper square in half to find the center. Line up the fold with the eyes on a 45˚ angle. Pin one half of the paper square in place.
  5. Open up the paper square and pin the remaining half.
  6. Cut out the center square.

    NOTE: If you are not using De La Luna or the I See You motif, you do not necessarily need to cut on a 45˚ angle.
  7. From the fabric for the corner triangles and the back of the pillow (Venus in Haunted in our sample), fussy cut the following:
    ONE 16½” x 16½” square for the back panel
    Using the assembled Triangle pattern, cut FOUR
  8. From the fabric for the piping (Batty in Haunted in our sample), fussy cut enough 2” strips to equal 68” in finished length for the piping; we cut 4 strips
  9. From the fusible fleece, cut ONE 16” x 16” panel.
  10. From the lightweight interfacing, cut ONE 16” x 16” panel.

18” Hexagonal Pillow

  1. Download and print the Hexagon Triangle Pattern, which has the sugar skull motif printed on it to act as a pattern matching guide.
    IMPORTANT: This pattern download consists of ONE 8½" x 11" sheet. You must print the PDF file at 100%. DO NOT SCALE to fit the page. There is a guide rule on the sheet to confirm your printout is to scale.
  2. Cut out the two pieces along the solid lines. Butt together the two pieces at the arrows as indicated. Do not overlap. Tape together to form the complete Triangle pattern.
  3. From EACH of the fabrics (Sugar Skulls in Clairvoyant and Sugar Skulls in Oracle in our sample), use the assemble pattern to cut SIX triangles. As mentioned above, you can use the motif on the pattern as a guide to get a perfect match for the finished kaleidoscope look.
  4. From the fabric for the piping (Venus in Spirit in our sample), fussy cut enough 2” strips to equal 58” in finished length for the piping; we cut 3 strips
  5. The fusible fleece and lightweight interfacing will be cut to size using the sewn top/back as a pattern.

At Your Sewing Machine & Ironing Board

16” x 20” Rectangle Pillow

Prepare the center with its borders

  1. Find the main 10½” x 14½” feature panel and the four 1½” border strips.
  2. Pin a side border strip (the eyes) to either side of the main panel, right sides together.
  3. Using a ¼” seam allowance stitch each side border strip in place.
  4. Pin a top/bottom border strip (the bats and moons) to the top and bottom of the sewn main panel, right sides together. Remember, the bats are directional; double check that the top and bottom strips are in the correct position.
  5. Using a ¼” seam allowance stitch the top and bottom border strips in place.

Prepare and attach the side panels

  1. Find the six 4½” x 2½” pieces and the four 4½” wide x 5½” pieces that make up the side panels. Split them into two sets of five.
  2. Keeping any directional issues in mind, stack your five pieces in order: bottom corner 2½” (flourish), lower panel 5½” (batty), center 2½” (eye), upper panel 5½” (batty), upper corner 2½” (flourish).
  3. Pin together in order, working from bottom to top.
  4. Stitch together, using a ¼” seam allowance.
  5. Press flat, pressing the seam allowances toward the darker fabric.
  6. Repeat to create an identical pieced panel for the opposite side.
  7. Place a sewn five-piece panel along either side of the main framed panel. Again, make sure all your directional motifs are running the right way. Pin in place.
  8. Using a ¼” seam allowance, stitch each side panel in place.
  9. Both side panels should be identical and perfectly aligned side to side. Press flat.
  10. Find the fusible fleece. Center the fleece on the wrong side of the completed front panel so there is ¼” of fabric showing beyond the fleece on all sides. Following manufacturer’s instructions, fuse in place.

Create and place the piping

  1. Find the piping cord and the fabric piping strips. If necessary, now is the time to stitch together shorter strips to create your full 72" length. To do this, place the strips together at a right angle. Pin in place. Draw a diagonal line across the intersection. Stitch along the drawn line and trim back the seam allowance to ¼”. Repeat as necessary to complete the full length.
  2. Thread the machine with thread to match the piping fabric in the top and bobbin.
  3. Wrap the fabric around the piping cord, right side out. Align the raw edges of the fabric and pin in place.
  4. Attach a Zipper foot.
  5. Secure the fabric in place around the cording with a basting stitch, running your seam as close to the cording as possible. Go slowly; it's important the raw edges of the fabric stay even with one another.
  6. Find the completed front panel. Place it right side up on your work surface.
  7. Starting at the center bottom of the panel and with approximately 1” free, place the length of piping around the entire perimeter, aligning the raw edges of the piping with the raw edge of the fabric. Pin in place. If necessary, you can slightly clip into the piping’s raw edges to help it ease around the corners. When you get back to your starting point, the ends of the piping should overlap about 1”.
  8. Still using the Zipper foot, machine baste the piping in place all around, but leave the overlapped ends loose.
  9. Remove from the machine, and with a seam ripper, open up the piping fabric on the tail end. Pull back the fabric to expose the cording inside
  10. Cut the cording only, not the fabric, so the tail of the cording is even with the head of the cording. The head of the cording should be trimmed flush with the tail.
  11. Pull the fabric portion of the tail back into place and fold under the raw edge ½" to create a clean edge.
  12. Wrap the folded fabric of the tail around the head, enclosing the matched ends of the cording. Pin in place. 
  13. Finish basting the piping in place, matching this final portion of the seam with the already sewn seam. 

    NOTE: If you're new to piping, check out our tutorial for general tips on making, joining and finishing.

Assemble front to back to finish

  1. Find the back panel and the lightweight interfacing. Center the interfacing on the fabric so there is ¼” of fabric showing beyond the interfacing on all sides. Following manufacturer’s instructions, fuse the interfacing in place.
  2. Place the front and back panels right sides together, sandwiching the piping between the layers.
  3. Pin in place all around, leaving an approximate 10” opening along the bottom for turning and inserting the pillow form.
  4. We engaged the AcuFeed™ Flex fabric feeding system for this final seam to help with the bulk of the layers. We also moved the needle position all the way to the left in order to get in as close to the piping cord as possible.
  5. Stitch around all four sides, pivoting at the corners and locking the seam at either side of the 10” opening.
  6. Turn right side out through the opening. Use a long, blunt tool to gently push out the corners. A knitting needle, chopstick or point turner works well for this. Press flat, pressing in the raw edges along the opening so they are flush with the sewn seam.
  7. Carefully insert the pillow form through the opening and fluff out the form into the corners.
  8. Thread a hand sewing needle and stitch the opening closed. We recommend a small ladder stitch hidden in the piping.

16” x 16” Square Pillow

Assemble the top panel

  1. Find the main center square. Place it right side up on your work surface. Find two of the four corner triangles. Place one triangle, right sides together, along each side of the center square. The points of the triangle will extend beyond the center square by about ¼” at each end. This is correct. Pin in place.
  2. Stitch each triangle in place, using a ¼” seam allowance.
  3. Repeat to pin and stitch the remaining triangles to the top and bottom of the center square. Again, the corner points will overlap by about ¼”.
  4. And, the center points of the two triangles will overlap at the center of the square.
  5. Press all the seam allowances toward the triangles.
  6. If necessary, re-thread the machine with thread to best match the triangles in the top and bobbin.
  7. Slightly lengthen the stitch and edgestitch all around the center square, running the seam within the triangles. Remember to sharply pivot at each corner.
  8. Find the fusible fleece. Center the fleece on the wrong side of the completed front panel so there is ¼” of fabric showing beyond the fleece on all sides. Following manufacturer’s instructions, fuse in place.

Create and place the piping

  1. As you did above, assemble the fabric strips to complete the required 68” of piping.
  2. Wrap the fabric around the piping cord, right side out.
  3. Machine baste in place.
  4. Starting at the center of one side, pin the piping around the entire perimeter.
  5. Again as above, trim the tail of the cord to be flush with the head.
  6. Fold under the end of the fabric, butt tail to head, re-cover, and re-pin and finish the piping’s basting seam.

Assemble front to back to finish

  1. Find the back panel and the lightweight interfacing. Center the interfacing on the fabric so there is ¼” of fabric showing beyond the interfacing on all sides. Following manufacturer’s instructions, fuse the interfacing in place.
  2. Place the front and back panels right sides together, sandwiching the piping between the layers.
  3. Pin in place all around, leaving an approximate 8” opening along the bottom for turning and inserting the pillow form.
  4. On this pillow, we used our Zipper foot to stitch all around all four sides, keeping the seam as close as possible to the piping cord.
  5. Remember to pivot at the corners and lock the seam at either side of the 8” opening.
  6. Turn right side out through the opening. Use a long, blunt tool to gently push out the corners. A knitting needle, chopstick or point turner works well for this. Press flat, pressing in the raw edges along the opening so they are flush with the sewn seam.
  7. Carefully insert the pillow form through the opening and fluff out the form into the corners.
  8. Thread a hand sewing needle and stitch the opening closed. We recommend a small ladder stitch hidden in the piping.

Create and attach the tassels

  1. The optional tassels are made from embroidery floss. Of course, you could simply buy tassels if you can find them in the color you want, but they are very easy to make. If you are brand new to making tassels, we have a full step-by-step tutorial.
  2. Our tassels each use one complete skein of floss and finish at 3½”.
  3. The tassels are not attached at the traditional corner points of the pillow but instead fall at the corner points of the 45˚ center square.
  4. Thread the hanging ties of a tassel through the tapestry needle. Loop the ties around the cording.
  5. When looped around, feed the needle back through the head of the tassel, pulling it all the way down and through. Remove the needle, tie off the tails, and trim the ends of the ties if necessary to match the bottom of the tassel.
  6. Repeat to attach the remaining three tassels.

Center covered buttons

  1. Using the template that comes with the Dritz® Covered Button Kit, we fussy cut two motifs from our fabric scraps: a skeleton head for the front button and an eye for the back button.
  2. Center the fussy cut circle, pushing it down into the mold.
  3. Push and snap the back into place.

    NOTE: It really is that easy, but if you are brand new to making covered buttons, we have a full step-by-step tutorial on how to use the Dritz® kits.
  4. Thread a long hand sewing needle and insert the needle through the exact center of the pillow from front to back.
  5. Insert the thread through the shank of the back button.
  6. Come back through the center of the pillow from back to front, cinching up tightly to create a nice center tuft.
  7. Knot in place to secure the tuft, then thread through the shank of the front button.
  8. Bring the needle behind the button and back through again, repeating the steps with the buttons pulled in place.

18” Hexagonal Pillow

Assemble the triangles to create the front and back panels

  1. Find all the triangles cut from the pattern. There should be six in one color and six in a second color.
  2. Start with one set of six. Pin together the first two triangles along one long inside edge.
  3. Using a ¼” seam allowance, stitch together the pair. Press the seam allowances open and flat.
  4. Find a third triangle. Pin and stitch it to the sewn pair in the same manner.
  5. Repeat to create a second three-triangle set from the remaining three triangles of your first color.
  6. You should now have two halves of one hexagon.
  7. Place the two halves right sides together along the center horizontal line, being especially careful to line up the center points.
  8. Using a ¼” seam allowance, stitch together the halves. Press the seam allowance open and flat.
  9. Repeat all the steps to create the remaining main panel.

Apply fleece and interfacing; create and attach piping

  1. Use one of the assembled main panels as your pattern to cut the fusible fleece and lightweight interfacing.
  2. We stacked our interfacing and fleece and cut both at once.
  3. Center the fleece on the front panel and the interfacing on the back panel. The edges are flush all around. Following manufacturer’s instructions, fuse in place.
  4. Find the piping strips and cording and assemble as above.
  5. Place the front panel right side up and flat on your work surface.
  6. Place the piping around the entire perimeter, cutting and butting together the ends as above for the other pillows.
  7. Remember to keep those raw edges flush and to fold under to finish the overlap.
  8. Place the front and back panels right sides together, sandwiching the piping between the layers.
  9. Pin in place all around, leaving an approximate 5” opening along once section of the hex for turning and inserting the filler.
  10. Stitch all around all four sides, keeping the seam as close as possible to the piping cord.
  11. Remember to pivot at the point of each of the hexagon sections and to lock the seam at either side of the 5” opening.
  12. Turn right side out through the opening. Use a long, blunt tool to gently push out the points. A knitting needle, chopstick or point turner works well for this. Press flat, pressing in the raw edges along the opening so they are flush with the sewn seam.
  13. Carefully insert the filler through the opening, working with small handfuls of fluffed filler from the outer points towards the opening. If you are new to hand-stuffing pillows, you guessed it… we have a full step-by-step tutorial with our favorite tips.
  14. Thread a hand sewing needle and stitch the opening closed. As above, we recommend a small ladder stitch hidden in the piping.

Add the center buttons

  1. These buttons are attached in the same manner as above, but they are plain color plastic buttons, not covered buttons. The flatter two-hole button goes against the back of the pillow; the shank button is for the front of the pillow.Thread the hand sewing needle and insert the needle through the exact center of the pillow from front to back.
  2. Insert the thread through both holes of the back button then bring the needle back through the exact center of the pillow (back to front this time).
  3. Pull the back button taut. And, holding that tautness, thread the front shank button into place.
  4. Pull taut again then repeat the back-and-forth to further secure.

Optional triple tassel

  1. This tassel is made in the same manner as the square pillow’s tassels above. There just just three combined into one, so the length of each is slightly shorter: just 2”.
  2. We used a 2” ruler as our wrapping template, you could do the same – or check out our full step-by-step tutorial on DIY floss tassels if you are brand new to the technique.
  3. It really is quite easy. We used a full skein for each tassel. Simply wrap…
  4. … tie off the top…
  5. … and cut free along the bottom.
  6. Wrap the top with an individual floss length to create the head of the tassel.
  7. When all three tassels are complete, thread the hanging tails of one through the tapestry needle and bring the head of the tassel up through a second tassel. Knot off at the top to secure, feeding the tails back down into the tassel.
  8. You are working from the bottom of the tier to the top. The top tassel’s hanging tails remain free and are wrapped around the front button of the pillow.
  9. Because of the tufting, let the tassel hang down about 1” below the button so it doesn’t jut out; you want the tassel to hang flat against the pillow front as shown above in our finished sample photos.

Contributors

Project Design: Alicia Thommas
Sample Creation and Instructional Outline: Debbie Guild

Section: 

Comments (2)

Jane Coombs said:
Jane Coombs's picture

What a feast for the eyes. Love the fussy cut buttons. The creative use of the stunning fabrics.

 Tula Pink is a visionary in the quilting world. She must be "tickled pink" by your presentatIon.

thanks for the eye candy.

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

@Jane - Thanks so much. Yep -- we love Tula's designs. The detail and artistic flair is incredible. De La Luna is a knock-out.