Brighten Up Your Holiday Décor with Matching Paper Pieced Star Pillows
Despite having all three Constellations Series patterns written since July, I had yet to make a cohesive set of pillows or wall hangings. Thankfully, I happened upon the perfect opportunity to do so! Let's walk through the project together...
I teamed up with Fabric Spark owner, Daryl Aitken, to add some holiday cheer to the storefront window. Daryl chose a non-traditional, but very festive palette of solids: (left to right) Free Spirit Solids in Legendary, Pear, and Stargazer; Color Works Solids in Vapor D and Hot Lips.
I experimented with where to place each colour within each design. Below is a list of how I allocated each colour to achieve a balanced look:
To complete all three pillows with envelope backings and colourful bindings I required the following amounts of each fabric:
(Add some extra yardage based on your comfort with foundation paper piecing. I cut my pieces as I worked through each template and optimized yardage by using scraps where I could.)
I then decided to print the templates at 90% scale rather than 100%. This small change brought the star motif closer to the centre of the pillow to accommodate for the plushness of the pillow insert. If you choose to alter the percentage for your project, be aware that by scaling the templates down you will also be altering the printed seam allowance. No biggie – just make sure you’re trimming your piece with a ¼" border around the solid line. Scaling down will also change the finished size of your blocks - I added borders in Fabric A to achieve a 18½" x 18½" block.
SKIP THE QUILTING!
Daryl recommended that we skip the quilting and secure the pillow top to Pellon's fusible cotton batting. And, wow, was she right! I pressed all the seams flat using Acorn Easy Press Pen (highly recommended!), and ironed the batting to the pillow top’s back. This simple hack gives you a finished piece in a fraction of the time it would take to quilt it.
Then it was all about the finishing touches. I used Fabric A panels to add the envelope backing to each pillow. (Quick tip: you may want to cut out your backing panels before beginning to foundation paper piece; this will ensure that you don’t accidentally use the fabric up when piecing.) You can find instructions on how to sew envelope backings in each of the Constellations Series patterns.
I alternated my binding colours for each pillow. Typically I hand sew my bindings on, but not this time. I machine sewed the binding to the back of the pillow first (raw edges matching), and the folded it to the front for top stitching). I knew that adding a punch of colour along the perimeter would make the pillows *POP* off the white chairs in the display.
And ta-da! A gorgeous pillow set that will have everyone wanting to take a closer look!