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Pretty Prints Please: Genie Pillow

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If your favorite teen were granted three wishes from her/his own personal genie, what would they be? Twelve fingers to allow for faster texting? A school day, which started at noon and ended at 1:00 with an hour for lunch? That all days would be good hair days? The options are likely as endless as a late-night phone call. Whip up a few of these darling tufted and tasseled genie pillows and see what wishes come true for you.

This super simple project is perfect for your teen to do on her/his own.

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Our Pretty Prints Please projects were made using fabrics from the collections of seven fabulous fabric designers: Amy Butler, Valori Wells, Anna Maria Horner, Erin McMorris, Tina Givens, Sandi Henderson and Paula Prass. Their beautiful prints were accented with turquoise and zebra fleece and a pink designer solid from Free Spirit. To see how we developed our mix-and-match, teen-friendly palette, read our article: Tips For Mixing Fabric Collections.

Sewing Tools You Need

Fabric and Other Supplies

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  • Fabric for pillow front and back: ½ yard of 45" wide fabric: we used Erin McMorris' Wildwood in Modern Vine Fuchsia
  • Button covering kit (1"- 1½" button): you need 2 buttons (some kits come with 1 - 4 buttons per package depending on button size): you can simply use scraps from your main fabric cuts for the actual covering
  • Four large tassels in a coordinating color: we choose a matte gold; you could also make your own out of gold embroidery floss
  • 16" x 16" pillow insert (or pillow filler)
  • All purpose thread
  • Button or carpet thread
  • See-through ruler
  • Fabric pencil
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Hand sewing needle
  • Specialty hand sewing upholstery and/or curved needle (optional)
  • Scissors or rotary cutter and mat
  • Straight pins

Getting Started

  1. Using your see-through ruler and fabric pencil, draw out and cut two 17" x 17 squares from your fabric.
  2. Make two covered buttons, using a Cover Button Kit and following manufacturer's directions. You can also refer to our tutorial: Button Kit Covered Buttons. Or, learn how to make you own with our tutorial: DIY Covered Buttons - No Kit Required.
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  3. If you've decided to make your own tassels, make four now. For easy step-by-step instructions, see our tutorial: How to Make a Tassel.

At Your Sewing Machine & Ironing Board

  1. Take your two fabric squares and pin them, right sides together, matching all raw edges.
  2. Using a ½" seam allowance and starting about 2" - 3" from the corner of one side, sew to the first corner, pivot, sew completely around the next three sides (pivoting at each corner), pivot at the fourth and final corner, sew about 2" - 3" and stop.
  3. You are stopping, because on this fourth side, you need to leave an opening just large enough to insert your pillow form. About 10" should be big enough.
  4. Clip corners and turn your pillow cover right side out.
  5. Push out the trimmed corners from the inside to make nice, square corners on the outside. Use your finger or a blunt-edged tool, like a large knitting needle.
  6. Press the seams flat. Remember, the edges of the opening should be pressed as well so they fold in to match the stitched edges.
  7. Insert your pillow form or pillow filler, and fluff out the corners of the pillow evenly.
  8. Hand stitch the 10" opening closed with a slip stitch.
  9. Using a long needle (either a 4-6" dollmaker's needle or a 4-6" upholstery needle works well) threaded with button or carpet thread, sew a few stitches through the center of the pillow. Pull these stitches tight and knot off. This will pull the center of the pillow in and allow the button to sink in the center, once it is attached.
  10. Using a smaller hand sewing needle (a curved needle also works well) stitch a covered button to the center of each side of the pillow. Do one button and then the other; don't try to stitch both buttons at once.
  11. Hand stitch a tassel to each pillow corner.
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Hints and Tips

  1. You can make your genie pillow in any size or shape. To decide how large you need to cut your fabric, determine the size you want to end up with, and then add 1" all around for your seam allowances.
  2. Using a measuring tape, measure the length and width of the pillow form you will be covering from finished seam to finished seam. We used an 16" x 16" pillow form.
  3. Height of cut piece = finished pillow height + 1" (½" seam allowance on each side)
  4. Width of cut piece = finished pillow width + 1" (½" seam allowance on both sides)
  5. In our example, because our pillow is square, the formulas are identical:
    Height of our cut piece = 16" + 1" = 17"
    Width of our cut piece= 16" + 1" = 17"

Project Design: Alicia Thommas
Sample Creation: Kathy Andrews, What Sew Ever



Comments (2)

princess said:
princess's picture
Thank you for the tutorial but i am unsure how to apply tassels on the corners of a cushion case, could you pleas help?smilies/cheesy.gif