Sharp edge pillow with piping

I had originally thought to use purchased purple piping for my Entwined Pomegranates pillow instead of creating my own piping. The below photo shows the purchased piping. I liked the solid purple color of this purchased piping for use with this pillow but decided to instead create a piping that matched the backing fabric of the pillow.

Click to enlarge any of the presented photos.

Pillows shown in the below photos are: Entwined Pomegranates, Waves of Early Fall and Fall Leaves.
You can view front and backs of these pillows at the bottom of this page.

Choosing the piping

Choosing the piping

I had originally thought to use purchased purple piping for my Entwined Pomegranates pillow instead of creating my own piping. This photo shows the purchased piping. I liked the solid purple color of this purchased piping for use with this pillow but decided to instead create a piping that matched the backing fabric of the pillow.

Purchasing fabric for the piping:

At a local quilting store I had the fun of going through their hundreds of rolls of 100% cotton material, nearly all of their prints are overdyed.

For the actual backing fabric I only needed, at most, a 17-inch square yet for the piping of I needed a 60-inch plus length of fabric.

I purchased a 24-inch length (along the selvage edge). This gives me 17-inch square for the backing, and then 6-7 inches (44-45 inches wide) material along the bias edge. Enough for two lengths of piping.

Once home, as the fabric is overdyed, I machine washed it, as I do not want to chance color from the pillow’s back material rubbing off onto the light color upholstery fabric of my sofa.

Some general thoughts:

  1. Make sure enough thread is on the sewing machine’s bobbin.
  2. I like to set my machine’s needle to be in the down position whenever I stop. This way, with the machine’s needle down, I can lift the pressure foot up and pivot my fabric and piping around as I do each corner.
  3. I keep a long darning (blunt ended) needle near at hand to help push the piping and fabric a bit to keep it from bunching as I machine sew corners.

This blog page got so long that it was quite a lot of data (due to the photos) to download when viewed. I decided to break the sections of this page into their own blog pages:

Create the piping: Create your own piping

Sewing the piping onto front fabric: Sewing the piping onto the front fabric

 raw fabric peeking through

raw fabric peeking through

Checking the machine sewing:

Once the piping is machine sewn all the way around onto the front fabric, I then closely examine my work to ensure that I have stayed on the “line” that I want to define the shape of the pillow.

Using my fingertips I push the piping back to see if I have machine sewn into the worked area on the front piece (if so remove the machine sewn thread and try again) and also I checked to ensure I haven’t move the sewing foot away from the guideline for the pillow shape.

In this photo I am using the pressure foot of the sewing machine to push the piping back so that I can take a photo and show you a place where I sewed away from the guideline and created a sliver where raw fabric of the front piece is peeking through. To correct this I just went back over that area, machine sewing as I fingertip pushed to get the pressure foot snugger against the piping and hence was able to sew along the guideline (outer edge of the pillow).

Adding backing fabric

Adding backing fabric

Adding back fabric:
Place the back fabric to be wrong side up, in that (as you can see in the photo) the good side of your back fabric will be facing the good side of your work piece.

Stitching the back fabric on is worked rather blindly. With the three layers (front, piping, back fabric) in place, I use my fingertips to feel the sew line of the piping to the front fabric and pushed the piping slightly inward so that the sewing machine’s needle did not snag it.

The neon green arrows on the photo point to where you will be machine sewing. Remember, you want to be sewing quite snug against the piping.

I worked (the machine sewing) slowly.

Keep a watch to make sure that the back fabric is not skewing and make sure that you are stitching close to but not into the bulge of the piping. Be sure along one side to leave several inches un-sewn in order to pull the pillow outside out and for stuffing the pillow.

Recall that one side of the pillow is where you crossed-over and sewed the piping ends. I suggest to do the open, unsewn area of the backing fabric’s seam on one of the other three sides of the pillow.

Pulling pillow to be outside out

Pulling pillow to be outside out.

It is through this open area that I stick my (take jewelry off first) hand in, grab a corner and begin to pull the pillow to be right side out.

Take your time pulling the pillow to be right side out and then when the pillow is all the way turned out do a check of your corners and other machine sewn areas.

Open area along seam

Open area along seam.

I like to use loose filling, which I rip/pull into 2-3 inch fluffy balls and push them into the pillow’s inside.

Adding the filling I first push filling into the corners, then along the sides and finally into the center.

Hand sewing closes up this access opening along the seam.

Fall leaf crewel pillow

Fall leaf crewel pillow

Designer for the Fall Leaf pillow is Elsa Williams. This kit was produced in the 1980’s and is one of my eBay finds. 10 x 13 design printed on Belgium linen which I stitched then finished as a 12-inch square pillow.

Behind pillow is the backing fabric for Waves of Early Fall pillow.

Waves of Fall pillow

Waves of Fall pillow

Waves of Early Fall is a Bargello counted needlework embroidery that I design. Pillow size is 9-inch by 9.5-inch square. My booklet Waves of Early Fall, 40-plus pages in length, is offered in e-booklet format and printed as a 8 by 10 inch paper bound booklet. Click this link for more information and close up views of the Waves of Early Fall design.

Behind pillow is the backing fabric for Fall leaf crewel pillow.

Nantucket Wildflowers pillow

Nantucket Wildflowers pillow

Designer for Nantucket Wildflowers is Erica Wilson. This kit was produced in 1982. Purchased 2014 on eBay as a full kit (minus the pillow fill). Design worked area is 10 x 10 inch, pillow size approximately 13-inch square.

Behind pillow is the backing fabric for Entwined Pomegranates Pillow.

Entwined Pomegranates Pillow

Entwined Pomegranates Pillow

Entwined Pomegranates is a Bargello counted needlework embroidery that I design. Worked area is 13 by 11.75 inch. Pillow size is 13 by 11.75 inch when worked on 18-count.

My booklet Entwined Pomegranates, 40-plus pages in length, is offered in e-booklet format and printed as a 8 by 10 inch paper bound booklet. Click this link for more information of the Entwined Pomegranates design.

Behind pillow is the backing fabric for Nantucket Wildflowers pillow.