Friday, May 10, 2013

Jelly Roll Floor Pillow

Jelly Roll Floor Pillow

I found this tutorial for making a giant floor pillow and I fell in love.
Moda Bake Shop: Jelly Roll Floor Pillow

I followed their directions, but made a couple changes as I only wanted one pillow, and I had different materials to work with.


I  lost my Walmart receipt so am estimating here.
Jelly Roll: $15
Fabric Palette Basics set (for underside) $12 , used half for each pillow = $6
Seam binding 2 packs, $6
Piping 1 pack $4
Thread ( used what I already had)
Beanbag Filler $18

Total Cost = approx. 50

Time = 2.5 days of working during nap times and after bed etc.


I used a Jelly Roll from Walmart and it only has 20 strips in it. I cut each strip in half, making 40 strips total, 4 of each pattern. I matched up the 4 sets or 10, and set one aside leaving me with 30 of the strips which I used for the top of the pillow. The leftover strips I will be using to make chair cushions for my old kids table and chair set from when I was young. More pics of that to come once complete.

On the Moda website, they calculate for the seam allowance on each piece, and sew one strip onto the next at a time. I did this differently and I will show you how. You may see different colors from picture to picture as I was working on 2 different pillows, one for me and one for my sister-in-law.

1: I paired all the pieces into sets of 2, keeping the same two prints paired together so that my pillow would end up with a geometric pattern. On the back of one of the two paired pieces, I marked a straight line from corner to corner.I then pinned 2 pieces right sides together.
 See my fancy ruler, a piece of baseboard left over from my shelving project

2: I took each pair of panels to my sewing machine, and sewed a straight stitch along each side of the line. You don't have to worry about back stitching at this part, as the ends of each piece end up trimmed off later on anyways.

I used the line at the left side of my foot, and the needle set all the way to the left to leave a small seam allowance.

3: Now that I had a line sewed on either side of my marked line I cut through each panel following my marked line, leaving me with 2 sets of identical panels. Repeat with the remainder of the 30 panels. When all said and done you will have 60 pieces. 

4: I then opened each piece and pressed the seam to one side so that each panel laid flat.

5: I continued matching 2 panels together, right sides together and sewing one edge together with the same seam allowance, trimming the tails as needed (see Moda instructions) I had a set order for assembling the pieces so I would end up with a consistent pattern as you can see below. This is 1/3 of the pillow put together.

Here is a picture of the top all put together. I could have used probably 6 less strips. As you can see it is kind of puckering and not laying flat here. I "solved" this when I sewed the top to bottom by making a tiny pleat along every second or third seam. This also gave the pillow a bit more of a poofy look.

6: I used a piece of material from the off cuts from the bottom patchwork to make this centre medallion and secured with a tight zig zag stitch. Since the fabric here was quite thick, the thread wanted to make big loops on the underside if I set my zigzag lengths too short, so I had my machine set just over 1, and went around the circle twice to get the tight stitch look that I wanted here. This also served the purpose of locking in all of the interior seams in as they had no backstitching due to trimming etc.

7. I made a patchwork for the back out of 9" x 9" squares for the underside.

8: I used seam binding for the piping around the outside and followed the directions on the Moda website for the rest.

9. I filled my pillow with bean bag polystyrene beads rather than pillow stuffing. A 100 litre bag of beans did the trick. I bought the supplies for making the covered button, but decided to skip that step for now as my son would just try and pull it off and eat it. Maybe someday down the road I will change my mind.

I think he likes it!  I am super pleased with how this turned out. Now I have to finish my sister-in-laws which will be sent to her empty to fill. She lives in Australia so that is the only way I can get this to her. Lucky for me, she knows how to sew and can do the last few stitches.