Making a Pillow One Stitch At a Time

Hey everyone! For my DIY project, I decided to try and sew a pillow. My whole life, I never touched a sewing machine or needle. That was a job for my mom and continued to be until she sent me away to suffer with unwanted rips and tears. I decided to let it be because I wasn’t a “Pinterest mom” no matter how hard I tried. When this project came up, I thought I wanted to make something completely separate from sewing a pillow, but then when supplies couldn’t come in for weeks, I decided to talk/complain to my roommate for ideas. This led to me sewing a pillow. This way, I would learn different sewing styles and finally grow up a little it.

I was very nervous about sewing because I like my fingers and I didn’t want to make like Brutus and stab them multiple times. I was also afraid the sewing would look like a first grader did it (not that they can’t be wonderful sewers, some more talented than I could ever be). Turns out, I did poke myself a few times. Okay more like 6 times, but I was told that wasn’t that bad for a first-timer. Using a running stitch, which sounds exactly how you do it, was very easy to do. It was a simple weaving in and out motion, however, when I stuffed the pillow near the end, I had to close up the pillow by using a stitch called scallop, and that was a bit scary. I didn’t want to ruin everything I worked hard for. It ended up being fine, but I did get caught in my own thread at times and made unnecessary knots.

After the trip to Michael’s for pieces of fabric (~$2.00), stuffing (~$6.00), and borrowing thread and a needle from my generous roommate, I started googling “DIY pillow,” “How to make a pillow,” and “How to hand sew a pillow.” Surprisingly enough, Pinterest didn’t pop up at all. I had to go with what google told me was the most popular/clicked on articles. The first option was this article from that showed me a pretty good start on how to make the pillow. There were a lot of pictures and clear instructions, so I knew the blog post/article was reliable. The only issue I had with it was that it showed how to sew with a sewing machine, and I was hand-sewing this pillow. So, I followed the steps on how to cut the fabric and moved on. I tried to find the next source by changing the words in the search bar to include “hand sewing.” That led me to a YouTube video by a channel called MADE everyday . The woman, Dana, seemed vibrant and ready to help, but alas, she used a sewing machine as well. I decided to give her a chance, so I skipped past the sewing and that’s where I learned the wooden dowel trick to get all my corners right. I didn’t have a dowel, but my roommate hoards PeiWei chopsticks (unused) and let me borrow them. I then went to this wikihow and, although it was pretty useless, I did look at it for the finishing picture (look below).

Screen Shot 2016-09-08 at 10.15.18 PM.png

This last article was by a woman named Jann for a website called and she was the most intricate of the four website for sure. Her tutorial included a video and written instructions for me to explore.


My First Stitches

Last resource I used was my lovely roommate. Because I scored 10’s on aural and kinesthetic learning, Maddie helped me the most. She taught six year olds and up how to sew, so when she saw me struggling, she came to help out. Having her with me showing me how to sew and answering questions I had encouraged me to not give up. Also, her praise at the end made me want to make another!! I took this project head on – as I do most projects in school. I hoped this would be much easier than Functional Languages, and it was with the encouragement of my roommate. Also, actually physically being able to see my progress and know it’s good helped a lot. Sometimes, for math and other sciences, you can’t always constantly check to see if you’re correct and pull a stitch if you make a mistake. I really enjoyed this method of learning, and now I think I’m going to start a pillow business from my dorm. (Below is the stuffing process and finished product!)


Citations :
Newton, Jann. “How To Make A Hand-Sewn Pillow.” Newton Custom Interiors. N.p., 03 Aug. 2016. Web. 7 Sept. 2016.
“Hand Sew a Small Pillow.” WikiHow. N.p., n.d. Web. 7 Sept. 2016.
Dana MADEeveryday. “How to Sew a Pillow 2 Ways: Basic Pillow and Pillow Sham.” YouTube. YouTube, 10 Jan. 2014. Web. 7 Sept. 2016.
Kathrynmichelle. “How to Make Awesome (and Easy!) Throw Pillows.” N.p., 26 May 2010. Web. 7 Sept. 2016.
This entry was posted in #1. DIY Project, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Making a Pillow One Stitch At a Time

  1. Pingback: Final Post! | Tales from the Fourth Floor

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