I come to you today as a fun and fresh 32 year old, but in a matter of hours, I will be an old, wisened 33 year old. You see, tomorrow, December 20, is my birthday. And something I have discovered over my almost 33 years here on earth is that quilting...well...it takes a lot of time.
Oh, that's not a new revelation to you? Well, I guess it's not completely new to me either, but you know what is new to me? Being almost 33 and 7 months pregnant. That puts a whooole new spin on how long it takes to make a quilt.
(Below is a picture of me wearing my maternity swimsuit as I mentally prepare to drive to the gym to swim laps in the pool. I'm a pretty poor swimmer, and also very unsure of the buoyancy of this huge belly.)
With a serious lack of energy and mostly constant nausea, I have come up with a fantastic solution to the "quilts take too long to make" crisis of 2018. Pillows! Why make a full throw-sized quilt when you can whip out a pillow in a fraction of the time?!
Before I was in time-saver mode, I didn't make many quilted pillows. But now I see quilted pillow patterns as a top priority!
Whether you don't have the space to make full quilts or are crunched for time, I have 3 fun and fresh pillow patterns for you to enjoy.
This is a stand-alone extension pattern that includes fabric requirements and instructions for a finished 18" square pillow. Like all of the pillow patterns, this one is great for using up scraps. The largest strip is only 2 ¼" wide!
If you make a pillow, or two, and love the look, you can also get the Maypole pattern in its entirety – which includes baby, throw and queen quilt sizes.
Click here for a full tutorial on How to Make a Quilted Pillow with Zipper.
If you like this hand quilted look, be sure to check out my tutorial on hand quilting. It includes all of my favorite supplies as well as a step-by-step tutorial video. Click here to read How to Hand Quilt with Video Tutorial!
Below you can see that these pillows were finished with a zipper and a stuffed with a pillow insert. For the exact premium hypoallergenic no-geese-were-harmed-in-the-making-of-this-pillow, click here for the link.
When I bought these pillow inserts on Amazon I was a little skeptical because... well...sometimes you just don't know what you're going to get when it comes to Amazon. When I received the package I was very confused because they came totally flat. For about 3 minutes I tried blaming my husband for ordering a strange seat cushion.
For shipping, apparently the manufacturer sucks out all of the air from the pillows. As soon as you open the air-sealed package, the pillows pop up and are lovely and light. I highly recommend them – especially for the price.
Maypole Pillows in the Wild
Because we are 6 days away from Christmas, time was tight and a lot of my testers only finished their pillow tops. You can still see how amazing they will look when finished!
Gingham Maypole Pillow by Susan from Needle and Grain
Cobalt Maypole Pillow by Emily Tindall
Woodland Nursery Pillow by Jessica Schunke
The Sugar POP pattern includes fabric requirements and instructions for a throw and baby quilt in addition to an 18" square pillow. You can see loads of pictures of that pattern this blog post.
I'll still how you some fun pillow pics, though, cause it is such a dreamy, modern design.
I know I already mentioned the free hand quilting tutorial, but thought I'd bring it up one more time in case you missed it. 😉 Click here to read How to Hand Quilt with Video Tutorial!
I hold the Modern Fans pattern very near and dear to my heart. This past fall I hosted my first sew-along using this pattern and it made me fall in love with this quilt community to such a degree I'm STILL heartbroken I can't marry ALL OF YOU!
Each of the sew-along posts are still up, so you can follow along at your own pace! Click here to see them or do a search for Modern Fans here on the blog. Are you worried about sewing curves? Don't be! I have lots and lots of videos and tutorials to help you through.
This pattern includes lots of sizes – king, queen, twin, throw and baby as well as an 18" square pillow.
Do you have pillow plans? Let us know in the comments if you have a favorite pillow pattern or a tip for finishing a pillow. Zippers aren't the only way to go!