DIY post swap: knitted pillow

I am so happy to collaborate with Julie from Restless Hearts Yonder on a couple DIY posts. Julie and I have admired each other's crafts from time to time. I remember being especially blown away by them last year as she made Christmas gifts for people. She admired mine too and this year we decided that we would collaborate on DIY gifts. I wrote a DIY on her blog for a hand-stamped scarf and she wrote one for a knitted pillow (below). Keep reading to learn how to make your own knitted pillow. 

So one of the things I know a lot of us do around the holidays is look for inspiration.  I will spend a considerable amount of time on pinterest throughout the year, looking for "diy" project ideas.  This year, I've take some of those ideas and turned them into actual projects that I will be giving as gifts.  It's saving me money and getting me to be creative at the same time.  This project was inspired by a lot of the knitted pillow covers I've seen out there.  I knew I could make one for myself, because essentially all this is is a scarf folded over and sewn up the sides.  I bought a nice chunky yarn in an oatmeal color and really love how this turned out.  Give it a shot...I know you'll love this too!

There are two parts to this project: knitting and sewing.  For the knitting portion, you can use whatever pattern you like...I, for one, am not a super experienced knitter so the ribs were complex enough for me.  If you look closely, you will see that I messed up more than one time (talking and knitting at the same time!) but it's not noticeable enough for me to want to rip it all out and start over!  You can use all purl stitches, you can use all knit stitches.  If you know how to cable stitch, be my guest (I have not mastered that one yet).  My thinking was that I wanted this pillow to be simple, but I wanted the texture to have some visual interest (hence the ribs).  The sky is the limit, think of whatever you'd like!  You could also do a pattern including other colors or a design of your own!

Here's what you'll need:
-knitting needles (I used a size 10, but probably could have used bigger ones)
-yarn of your choice (I used this kind)
-cotton fabric big enough to make a pillow insert out of 
-polyfill or your choice of pillow filling
-a sewing machine or needle and thread
--a tapestry or plastic yarn needle with a large eye

For the knitting:
Cast on 40 stitches and straight stitch one row.  From then on this will be your pattern: knit 5 stitches, purl 5 stitches.  This will create the ribbing pattern.  Stitch this for as long as you'd like (I had a specific size pillow in mind when I started), just remember that your piece will be folded over length wise to create the pillow cover so make it pretty long.  In the end, mine measured 29 inches long.

After you're done knitting you will cast off and end up with a scarf looking piece.  Set it aside and grab your fabric for the pillow insert.  I made a pillow insert because putting batting into something that was knitted sounded like a mess.  Take your knitted piece and stretch it as far across as it will stretch and measure it.  Then measure the length.  Take those measurements and make a square with your fabric, just as you would for a pillow.  Sew around all the sides leaving a small hole to fill it with batting.  

After you've filled your pillow, sew it shut.  Then take your knitted piece and pin up one side.  Put the pillow into the knitted piece--it's going to be really fluffy and might seem like your knitted piece won't be able to fit around it, but it will!  Pin the pillow around all sides so that the pillow fits inside.

Thread a large eyed needle with a long piece of yarn.  You're going to sew up the sides with a simple running stitch.  Leave a tail at the end of your first stitch and tuck it underneath your stitches.  Do this around the edge of your pillow.  I found it easiest to do this while standing so that I could get the proper amount of tautness around the edge.  Make sure that if you do the ribbing, your ribs match up when you're doing this--it's just like matching stripes or plaids!  

When you're done just tie a simple knot and tuck the rest of the yarn inside the pillow.  There you have it!!

I hope you enjoy making a pillow for someone this holiday season!  I'm still debating whether or not I should give this as a gift or keep it for myself!!  Happy crafting!! 

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This entry was posted on Thursday, December 5, 2013 and is filed under ,,,,,,,. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response.

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