DIY Pillow

Karen from I Always Pick the Thimble is here today making waves with her DIY pillow tutorial. I love the wave effect!

As a fabric store owner, I was thrilled when Amy Butler reissued one of her older fabric collections “Belle”.   My store was relatively new when Amy Butler’s fabrics first burst onto the scene.  It was fun to see our customer’s excitement and reactions when they first saw her fabrics.  Seeing the fabrics reissued again reminds me how much fun we had when the new bolts of fabrics arrived and how we fussed with arranging them “just-so” on the shelves.

For this pillow top I used pre-cut strips of fabrics from an Amy Butler “Belle” jelly roll, but it can be made with any strips of your favorite old (or new!) fabrics.  Stay tuned, because I’m working on a Memory Lane Apron and Memory Lane Market Tote as well!


  • 13 strips of 2 1/2″ x 22″ pieces of fabric (or you can use pre-cut strips from a fabric jelly roll)  to make a 21 ” x 21″ pillow top

  • 21″ x 21″ piece of fabric for back

  • 20″ x 20″ pillow form

  • thread

  • marking chalk or wash away fabric marking pen

  • general sewing supplies (scissors, pins, tape measure etc.)


Pillow Front Instructions:

First lay out the strips in the order you want to sew them.  Stack them in a neat pile, so you are ready to sew with them.

With right sides together, sew all long sides of the strips together using a 1/4″ seam.
On the back side, press all the seams flat in one direction.

5759 seam one


Using a 1/4″ seam, sew seams with wrong sides of fabric together, encasing the original seam. When folding the fabric together, try and keep the just sewn seam centered in the middle of the fold.

Starting in center of pillow, mark a vertical line from top to bottom. Mark 4 more lines on either side of the center line at 2″ apart.

5765 mark seam 2 inches

Pin – Starting with the first strip, find the middle line just made and pin the first seam in the middle facing down. Pin the seam to the left and the seam to the right facing up, then alternate pinning the rest of the seams up and down to create a “wave.”

On the next strip, alternate the direction you pinned to create a “wave” and continue pinning the rest of the seams.  On the side seams, pin in the same direction as the nearest vertical seam.
Sew across all layers and seams following the vertical lines.

5772 wavy seam

Pillow Back Instructions:

The edges of the pillow top may be slightly uneven after sewing the strips together. Cut off the uneven edges and cut the pillow top and pillow back so they are 21″ x 21″.  (Or as close to this measurement as you can get.)
Pin together front to back with right sides together. Using 1/2″ seam, sew around 3 edges. On the fourth side, leave a 10″ opening to insert the pillow form. Insert the pillow and hand stitch the opening closed.

 DIY Pillow 2

And there you have a brand new throw pillow!

You can find Karen Roark blogging at I Always Pick the Thimble and Facebook.

  1. Gorgeous pillow!! I’ve linked to your tutorial over at Craft Gossip:

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