Sunday, March 24, 2013

Sweater Pillows!

You've seen them in Pottery Barn, Ballard and all
your other favorite decor shops.

Knitted pillows are very much the decor statement.
They can be time consuming to make if
you're going to knit them.
They can be pricey if you're going to buy them.
I've solved these problems by using
upcycled, repurposed sweaters!

Start with a sweater, no longer being worn, in good shape.
I like cotton sweaters,
because I want my pillows to be washable.

This sweater has cables on the front and back,
so I'll be able to make two pillow covers from it.

First, measure your sweater and decide the size
pillow cover you can cut from it.
Keep in mind the standard pillow form sizes,
so finding a form to fit your cover is not a problem.

Next, hold your breath, and start cutting.

Knitted fabric is very forgiving,
so if your square is not perfect,
due to the original sweater's shape,
don't be too concerned, it will work.
This will be one pillow front.

Because my sweater is a cardigan,
I am going to incorporate the
buttons and ribbing into this pillow cover.

Once the knitted pieces are cut,
you will need a coordinating fabric to sew
them onto for stabilizing,
and two pieces for the backing.
I am using a poly blend pique for these pillows.

For each pillow, cut one square the same size
as your cut knitted piece,
and two more pieces for the backing.
The two backing pieces should measure
the same length x 2/3 the length
of your square knitted piece.

Sew a hem along the long side of each of your
two back pieces.

Pin the knitted square to the fabric square...

...and machine stitch around all four sides.
I use a 3/8-inch seam allowance.

Next pin one backing piece,
hem side up,
to to the knitted piece.

Overlapping the first pinned piece,
pin the second backing piece onto the square.

Machine stitch around all four sides.
I use a 1/2-inch seam allowance here.
It's also a good idea to reinforce the stitching
at each of the four places where the backing
is overlapping.

Here is my completely stitched pillow cover.
Because the cut knitted edge is a bit messy...'s also a good idea to serge all the way around.

This will give your pillow cover a nice clean finish
on the inside.

All that's left to do now,
is turn your covers right side out
and insert your pillow forms.
By the way,
I prefer feather forms.
They are softer and easier to get into the cover.
However, I've used foam forms too,
and although they are harder to get into the cover,
they will work fine.

This week I am linking to
Metamorphosis Monday at
Tweak it Tuesday at Cozy Little House
Wow Us Wednesday at Savvy Southern Style


Loretta Thomas said...

I love love these ...what a beautiful pillow. The white is so clean and crisp. The buttons are a lovely addition! Great Job...

NanaDiana said...

Wonderful tutorial and I love those sweater pillows. I really like how you worked the buttons right into the pattern- xo Diana

Vicki Boster said...

Hi Susan- your pillows are just fabulous-- using old sweaters makes for a world of possibilities!! They look beautiful on your couch!

Meggie said...

With all your instructions and photos, this is a fail-proof project....I really love the look.

Patty said...

I really love this idea. Thank you for such a fantastic tutorial.

Donna said...

I love these. I am now inspired to make some!

Linda said...

You are AMAZING!!!! I am SO going to make a few!!!

craftyles said...

These look fantastic. I can't wait to try one of these!Thanks for the tutorial.

sew sweet vintage said...

Luv your sweater pillows!! Pinned:) New Follow. Follow me too at

Denise Marie said...

Great job, tfs.

Anonymous said...

Thanks bunches for taking the time to make up this tutorial! I've been wanting to make some sweater pillows but wasn't really sure where on earth to begin! LOL!
I think now I have the confidence to try...
Beth P

Michele Reynolds said...

I <3 your petty pillows! Feature<3

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