Golden, Glorious Pillows

The perfect accent color, soft buttery yellow pillows glow with warmth.


Enlarge Image Keep a ray of sunshine in a room with these yellow pillows.

Golden yellow is a color that "plays well with others." So these pillows are perfect in combination with other colors, or, as shown here, clustered in groups.

Swirls of ribbon and a liberal sprinkling of mother-of-pearl buttons add whimsy to this basic bolster. The ribbons -- gold on top of yellow, twisted for a two-tone effect -- were sewn in place with the buttons for a striking embellishment.

What You Need:
Enlarge Image A more complicated design, this pillow's wavy surface is a real attention-getter.
  • 1 yard of yellow cotton fabric
  • 15 yards each of two 5/8-inch-wide coordinating ribbons
  • Buttons (this pillow required seventy 5/8-inch-diameter buttons and eighty-one 7/8-inch-diameter buttons)
  • 1-1/2 yards of 5/32-inch cord (for piping)
  • 6-1/2 x 13-inch bolster pillow form or polyester fiberfill
  • Scraps of batting (optional)
Instructions:
  1. From fabric, cut a 15 x 23-inch rectangle for bolster center, two 6 x 23-inch rectangles for ends, and enough 1-1/2-inch-wide bias strips to measure 1-1/2 yards for piping.
  2. Cut twenty-two 18-inch lengths from each ribbon. Align ribbons in pairs, using one of each color. Evenly space ribbon pairs along one long edge of the 15 x 23-inch rectangle, keeping the ribbons 3/4 inch from short edges; sew ends of ribbons along the long edge. Make eight twists in the first ribbon pair; pin loose ribbon ends to the opposite long edge of rectangle. Arrange seven 7/8-inch-diameter buttons along twisted ribbon; sew each to rectangle through ribbon. For the second ribbon pair, make seven twists and use six 5/8-inch-diameter buttons. Continue twisting the ribbon pairs in this manner until all ribbons are sewn to the rectangle. Sew along second long edge to catch ribbon ends.
  3. Sew piping, then cut in half. Pin piping to one long edge of the 15 x 23-inch rectangle so raw edges are aligned and rounded edge faces inward. Sew piping to the rectangle using a zipper foot pressed snugly against the piping. Sew remaining piping to the opposite edge of the rectangle.
  4. For casing, press one long edge of each 6 x 23-inch rectangle under 3/4 inch twice; unfold. Sew the remaining long edge of each 6 x 23-inch rectangle to a long edge of the 15 x 23-inch rectangle. Fold the assembled piece in half with right sides together to form a 26 x 11-inch rectangle, aligning the pressed casing lines. Sew, leaving 3/4-inch openings 1-1/2 inches from the top and bottom edges. Press the seam allowance open; turn right side out. Refold casings, edgestitch in place. Cut the remaining ribbons in half; align the ribbons in pairs, using one of each color. Thread a ribbon pair through each casing until ends are even.
  5. Insert a bolster pillow form or stuff with polyester fiberfill. If desired, cut circles from batting and place over ends of pillow form to fill out ends of bolster. Pull ends of ribbons, and tie in bows to close bolster. Sew buttons 1 inch from end of ribbons.
Enlarge Image Create a cheerful pillow with plenty of country charm.

Taking its cue from an American favorite -- the quilt -- this pillow is high on homespun charm. Fabric squares of gingham, polka dots, flowers, and leaves team up in a checkerboard pattern, while yellow ties highlight the intersections. The decorative-edge triangles, folded and stitched on the diagonal, are the same size as the fabric squares.

What You Need:
  • 1/8 yard each of four coordinating fabrics
  • 16-1/2-inch square of yellow fabric (for pillow back)
  • 15-inch-square pillow form or polyester fiberfill
  • No. 5 cream-color perle cotton
  • Large-eye needle
Instructions:
  1. From each of four coordinating fabrics, cut eight 4-1/2-inch squares. Lay out 16 of the squares on a flat surface in four rows of four squares. Sew squares together in rows. Press the seam allowances in alternate directions from row to row. Sew rows together.
  2. For points, fold each of the remaining 4-1/2-inch squares in half diagonally with wrong sides together, forming a triangle; press. Fold in half again, forming a small triangle; press. On the right side of pillow front, pin four triangles to each side with the short points facing toward the pillow center. Baste in place.
  3. Sew a pieced pillow front to pillow back, leaving an opening for turning. Turn right side out. Insert pillow form or stuff with polyester fiberfill; hand-sew opening closed. At each intersection of four squares on the pillow front, tie two strands of perle cotton; trim to about 1 inch.
Enlarge Image Display this elegantly fashionable pillow proudly.

Boxy pillows with button centers once played prominently in interiors. Covered in sophisticated matelasse, this pillow style gets a fashionable update. From the fabric-covered button to the piping around the edges, the attention to detail gives this one a place of prominence.

What You Need:
  • 1-1/2 yards of matelasse fabric
  • 4-1/4 yards of 5/32-inch cord (for piping)
  • Polyester fiberfill
  • Two 2-1/2-inch-diameter covered-button forms
  • Heavy thread
  • Long upholstery needle
Instructions:
  1. From matelasse fabric, cut two 19-inch squares for pillow front and back, one 5-1/2 x 75-inch strip for boxing (piecing as necessary), and enough 1-1/2-inch-wide bias strips to measure 4-1/4 yards for piping.
  2. Sew piping.
  3. Sew finished piping to pillow top. Then sew boxing strip to piping-and-top piece. Sew second strip of piping to back piece. Finally, sew back-and-piping piece to boxing strip leaving a 6-inch opening for pillow form.
  4. Insert pillow form in the opening, and sew covered buttons to each other through the center of the pillow.
Enlarge Image This simple pillow is original and is sure to cause a sensation.

As pleasing to the touch as it is the eye, this plush velvet pillow has an unlikely mate: casual linen. The combination proves that opposites can, indeed, attract. A tiny feather adds yet another bit of whimsy and texture.

What You Need:
  • Two 13-inch squares of velvet
  • 6-1/2 x 13-inch rectangle of open-weave linen
  • 12-inch-square pillow form or polyester fiberfill
  • Craft feather
  • Fabric glue
Instructions:
  1. For pillow front, fray one long edge of the open-weave linen rectangle. With right sides up, pin the linen rectangle onto the right side of a 13-inch velvet square, with the frayed edge at the center of the square. Baste the fabrics together along the outer edges; zigzag-stitch the frayed edge to the square. Zigzag-stitch a 2 x 5-1/2-inch rectangle in center of the pillow front.
  2. Sew a pillow front to pillow back, leaving a large opening. Turn right side out. Insert pillow form or stuff with polyester fiberfill; hand-sew opening closed. Glue a feather centered inside the rectangle on the pillow front.
  3. Sew the pillow front to pillow back, leaving a large opening. Turn right side out. Insert pillow form or stuff with polyester fiberfill; hand-sew opening closed. Glue a feather centered inside the rectangle on the pillow front.

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