Plethora of Pillows – Double-Z Block Pillow

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4 comments » books, fabric, fun, Plethora of Pillows, staff projects, Uncategorized

PlethoraofPillows_BlogA little something about me, though I am in love with quilts and fabric and anything related, I am not a quilter. I’m more of a huge fan. I have not worked on a sewing project in so long, my machine was dusty and my fabric scissors were squeeky. I was a bit nervous about taking on a quilted pillow, but I wanted to make one that really jumped out at me. Flipping through the pages of Vintage Quilt Revival, I was really attracted to the Geometric Slide Quilt on page 19.

Vintage Quilt Revival

Vintage Quilt Revival

I immediately envisioned our Isle of Enchantment fabric in this pattern. I thought the Ivory on Ivory Enchantment fabric would be the perfect substitute for the solid white, and the bright colors of the coordinating fabrics would pop beautifully in the Double-Z block design. I really appreciate how this book explains the classic vintage blocks used to make each of the quilts. It made it easy for me to adapt the project into a pillow. Since I’m one of those people who can’t ever seem to follow instructions to a “T”, I think I will be referring to this book a lot for future quilting projects and inspiration! Each Double-Z block came out to a finished size of 12.5″ x 12.5″. I figured that 4 blocks sewn together would make a pretty gorgeous and sizable 24″ pillow. That’s how the plan was hatched, onto the making! But wait… All my kids are home from school for summer break. And I’m at Connecting Threads designing fabric all day long during the week. And we’ve got travel plans almost every weekend. When is this gorgeous quilted pillow I have in mind going to happen?! (insert minor meltdown here).

I’m really not very good at focusing on anything for a very long time when my children are around. They have an amazing talent for reducing my ability to concentrate, and they want to be involved in everything I do.  But I knew the only way I was going to get this done was with their assistance, so I put them to work.

Double-Z block pieces.

Double-Z block pieces.

First we cut the pieces. There were a lot of squares, 64 to be exact, that I then cut in half diagonally to make triangles. To keep them busy while I cut, I gave my daughters each two squares of fabric to sew together into a pillow for their dolls. Here is Matilda showing off her handiwork-  I was very impressed by her tiny little stitches!  We may very well have a future quilter on our hands…

Matilda shows off her handiwork.

Matilda shows off her handiwork.

The next step (about a month later!) was to sew those tiny triangles together, one white one with one of the colored ones.  I liked this part, and I think it made my sewing machine very happy to be used again.  After pressing all my freshly sewn squares, I needed to trim them to 4″.  I used a rotary cutter and a clear ruler that I inherited from a friend years ago.

All my freshly sewn squares, some still in need of a trim.

All my freshly sewn squares, some still in need of a trim.

Now I was on a roll, I felt like I could sew all day and late into the night!  But my kids were unimpressed by my new found enthusiasm for this pretty pillow.  So, we took a break… which lasted another month.  I’ve got to find a way to keep up my momentum.

Sewing the blocks together.

Sewing the blocks together.

Uh oh, the corners aren't looking so hot...

Uh oh, the corners aren’t looking so hot…

Back at it again, it was time to sew together the pieces. I sewed each of the four blocks and then sewed those two pieces together.  I started to notice that the corners weren’t meeting up exactly.  At this point there was a lot of stitch ripping, which was made somewhat easy (but still annoying!) with a little wooden handled Clover Seam Ripper.

I need to consult some of the experts here at Connecting Threads about how to make my corners line up!  My trial and error method was incredibly frustrating and time consuming.  Thankfully I had these adorable faces to cheer me up and onward!

My little helpers

My little helpers

 

Quilt face with intended binding fabric.

Quilt face with intended binding fabric.

I chose to quilt around the diagonal lines of the pattern.  I think it turned out nicely. But unfortunately, I did not make it to the finish line – yet.  Here is my quilted pillow face with it’s intended binding fabric.  I think the purple will really reign it in around the edges.  For stuffing I plan to make a 24″ pillow form using our Hobbs Polyester Fiberfill.

Pillow, meet stuffing.

Pillow, meet stuffing.

Think of this as a first installment of my Plethora of Pillows Double-Z Block pillow post!  I look forward to presenting you with the finished product shortly- probably after the kids go back to school in September.

Winthur


4 responses to “Plethora of Pillows – Double-Z Block Pillow”

  1. Ann Says:
    08/27/2014 7:32 am

    Winthur – Your pillow is turning out lovely! HSTs can be a bit tricky to join so you are doing fine. It’s great you are including your little helpers. This will be fun memories for all of you. Your plight with finding time to sew reminds me of Jenna’s blog about finding 20 minutes here and there. Here’s the link — http://blog.connectingthreads.com/?s=20+minutes

    Reply
    • Winthur Says:
      08/27/2014 7:49 am

      Thank you, Ann! I do remember Jenna’s post- great advice :)

      Reply
  2. Teri Says:
    08/27/2014 8:08 am

    When you are all done and you have the pillow sitting out all you will remember is that you made it yourself, your girls helping you, and it will end up being your favorite pillow ever!!

    Reply
    • Winthur Says:
      08/27/2014 8:18 am

      I think you are right, Teri! Just another reason why handmade is the best…

      Reply

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