Autumn Inspired Harvest Time Pillow

October 21, 2019By Janice FergusonDIY, Holiday, Home Decor 8 Comments Opinion by Paid Consultant

Capture the beauty of this colorful season with a pillow created with the fabrics of fall. With the ever-popular burlap, a glorious autumn cotton print and a burlap rosette, memories of back-to-school, Halloween, and Thanksgivings past will linger even on the occasional gray days of November. Use any Brother sewing machine and some fabric to create a warm and welcoming harvest time accessory for your home.

Requirements

  • 3/4 yd. tan burlap
  • 1/8 yd. orange burlap (Optional)
  • ½ yd. fall print fabric
  • 2.5” felt circle
  • 5/8 yd. fabric for making or covering pillow form
  • 16” pillow form or self-made pillow (you will need fiber fill to stuff the pillow)
  • Brother sewing machine
  • Notions: chalk marker, fray block, darning needle
Note 1: There are several weights of burlap. The more coarse the fabric is, the more difficult it is to work with on a project like this. The jute threads are further apart exposing the pillow fabric inside. Making the rosette is far more difficult with the loose weave of the coarse burlap.

Basic Pillow

Note 2: Use fabric that blends with the burlap if making your own pillow or covering a pillow form. The color will shadow through the loose weave of the burlap.

1. Measure pillow form vertically and horizontally. Do not rely on the pillow’s label as those measurements are approximate.
2. Add 2.5” to pillow’s width and length. The seam allowances will be on the outside of the pillow and fringed. The added 2.5” allows for 1.25” beyond each seamline.
3. Pull a thread to identify burlap’s straight of grain. This is important as you make the fringe.

4. Remove pulled thread to create a channel for cutting on straight of grain.

5. Cut 2 pieces of burlap to size and press.

Note: Burlap has a distinctive barn-like odor. If you find it objectionable, treating burlap with a scented linen laundry spray before pressing will make it more pleasant.

6. Stitch on “channel” seam line, beginning 1.25” from raw edge and stopping to pivot 1.25” from the next side. Leave 4th side open.
7. Insert pillow. Hand stitch opening closed with a darning needle and a strand of burlap.
8. Remove .5-.75” of burlap threads to create fringe. Save these threads.

Sashes


1. Cut fall fabric 7” x 40-45”.
2. Mark the lengthwise center, 3.5” from either long side.
3. Cut a strip of burlap 1.5” x length of the fall fabric strip.
4. Fringe .25-.375” from each raw edge.
5. Zig zag from edge of fringe into burlap on each side, w. 3.5 L 1.2.

6. Stitch burlap strip to center of 7” fall fabric. Straight stitch on either side close to zig zag.

7. Measure the lengthwise circumference of the pillow as you would measure a waist line.
8. Seam sash right sides together with ¼” seam. Join into a circle like a belt so that it measures ½” 1” smaller than the pillow circumference.
9. Slip sash over the pillow and center.
10. Measure the vertical circumference of the pillow as you would measure a waist line.
11. Create a 5” wide sash for the vertical circumference as was done for the horizontal sash, with a 1” fringed burlap strip centered and straight stitched on the fall fabric.
12. Slip sashes over pillow.

Burlap Flower

13. Cut a strip of burlap 13” x 1.75”. Select an overcast stitch w. 5.0, L. 4.0.

14. Overcast one long burlap edge.

15. Select triple zig zag, w 6.0, L 1.0.

16. Butt the ends together and join with a triple zig zag.

17. Stitch a very strong gathering thread .25-.375” from raw edge. Begin this gathering thread at least 1” before the triple zig zag seam.

Note: Remember the bobbin thread gathers best so make that the strong one.

18. Cut another 10 x 1.25.” Finish this strip as the first one.
19. Gather each strip as tightly as possible into a circle. Knot gathering threads together to hold gathers in place.
20. Fringe the outer edge, leaving 1” toward the overcast edge intact.
21. Remove 2-4 threads from orange burlap. Bundle with 4-6 threads of tan burlap threads, fold into a 4-5” loop as shown and tie with a burlap thread.

22. Draw up each opening with tapestry needle.
23. Stack the two circles and whip together.
24. Pull tail of loop through rosette center. Insert thread tails through large tapestry needle. Clip a small hole in the center of the felt and pull the burlap tails through. Knot tails and dab with a little fray block.
25. Hand stitch rosette to felt circle. Then hand stitch rosette’s felt circle to pillow sash.

Enjoy your harvest time pillow indoors or outside on a pretty autumn day.

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8 Comments

  • Thank you, Rachael, for your comment. I love seasonal touches for my home, but do not like to put a lot of time into short seasons. This one is relatively quick and will go from October through Thanksgiving, so it is a worthwhile investment of precious sewing time.

  • This looks like a fun, fairly quick project that could be adapted for any season or occasion. The flower is the perfect accent!

  • Thank you, Donna. It really is a fun and quick project. I can see making this same pillow with a different base fabric and a Christmas or other seasonal print sash. Even a ready made silk flower or a ribbon rosette would be a fast embellishment.

  • Just checked your blog and this is nice on so many levels! Even with this short time window before Thanksgiving, it will be easily accomplished!!
    I also appreciate the guidance on dealing with burlap. I have never sewn with it and would probably not have considered it before seeing your results. I would certainly give my machine a good interior vacuuming afterwards🙂

    • Catherine, I’m glad you like this project and found the sewing with burlap tips helpful. Indeed, a good interior vacuuming of your machine afterwards is very wise. Burlap sheds, the coarser the burlap the more shedding ensues. You are so right, this pillow can be whipped up before Thanksgiving and add a festive fall feel to your home. Thanks for your thoughtful comment.

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