Sunday, December 26, 2010

Family Tree Pillow Tutorial

In an attempt to make a heart felt gift for my family, I decided to create a Family Tree pillow. I didn't want the hassle of a wall hanging, and wanted to make sure it was easy to display.

Here's the breakdown:

First, sketch out all the names needed and embroider.

 When you're done it will look something like this:
If you're like me, you'll be glad you have a small family!

To make a 16"x16" pillow, cut a piece of fabric 17"x 40". I used flannel, but any pillow-y fabric will work. Finish both of the skinny ends of the rectangle with a hem or serger. Make sure one end looks nicer, as this will show on the finished pillow.

Fold the ends to make a square that is approx. 17"x 16.5". Iron the folds to create the front of the pillow.

Cut out a tree from brown felt or fabric. Here is the pattern I used. Click to enlarge. Make it large enough to fill up most of the front of the pillow.

Sew this tree trunk on to the pillow with an edge stitch.

 Cut 50-55 leaves. I used 3 different shades of green (and some blue due to bad lighting). To cut these, make a rectangle slightly larger than the leaves. Cut a "smile", then turn the piece over and cut a similar "smile" to create a leaf shape.

Pin the first layer on to the pillow. Sew leaves on by sewing straight down the middle of each leaf.

Once the first layer is secured, repeat with a second layer of leaves.

Cut out each of the embroidered names with 1/2" space around each name. Fold 1/4" of each edge and iron. Clip the corners so they don't show.

Edge stitch the names onto the tree.

You should have something like this:

Now, turn the pillow inside out and sew up the side seams, making sure to have the nicer edge showing on the back. I used the serger and reinforced with the sewing machine. Turn inside out.

Insert pillow and admire your hard work!

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