An easy quilted pillow project can be stunning when you combine several fabrics in colors and patterns you love. Recycle vintage linens or purchase new cotton prints from a craft store. To make the easiest quilted pillow top, sew squares of the same size together into a traditional patchwork grid. Use a backing made of 2 overlapping sections of fabric to provide an opening for inserting the pillow. The most important element of an easy quilted pillow project is sewing straight, even seams so that your results appears neat, highlighting your fabrics.
Step 1: Wash the fabrics. Wash cottons in warm water, dry and iron them to allow them to shrink. Wash vintage linens by hand in cold water using a mild detergent. Synthetics and knits are not a good choice for an easy quiilted pillow as they can be slippery, making them more difficult to sew.
Step 2: Measure the pillow. Decide how big you want your patchwork grid to be. If your fabrics contain large-scale patterns, use as few as 4 large squares to show them off. For solids, small patterns, or a combination, consider a 9- or 16-square patchwork.
Step 3: Divide one side of the pillow measurement by the number of squares on one side of the pillow to determine the finished size of one patchwork square. For instance, a 15 inch square pillow with a 9 patch design means each square's finished dimension will be 5 inches by 5 inches. Add 1/2 inch to the finished dimensions to create a seam allowance of 1/4 inch around the square.
Step 4: Make a square template from cardboard. For a 15-inch 9-patch pillow, make a 5 and 1/2 inch template.
Step 5: Place the template along the straight grain of the wrong side of the fabric. Trace around the template with a pencil. Cut out the fabric squares.
Step 6: Arrange the fabric squares in a pleasing patchwork design.
Step 7: Sew the squares together. Place 2 squares with right sides facing one another with their edges aligned. Sew 1/4 inch from the edge using a straight stitch. Press open the seam with an iron. Sew the entire row of squares together in this manner. Repeat for every row.
Step 8: Place 2 rows right sides together with their edges aligned. Sew them together using a 1/4 inch seam allowance. Press open the seam. Repeat until you have completed the patchwork top.
Step 9: Cut the backing fabric 1/2 inch wider than the pillow measurement and 8 inches longer. Cut this fabric in 2, so that one piece is several inches longer than the other. Hem the raw edges of both of the fabrics where you cut them apart by folding an edge over 1/4 inch, pressing it, folding it over again 1/4 inch, pressing it, and sewing the fold into place with a straight seam.
Step 10: Place the backing fabrics on the patchwork right sides together, aligning the outside edges to match the edges of the patchwork square. The backing fabrics' finished edges will overlap to create the opening into which you will insert the pillow.
Step 11: Sew all around the edges of the pillowcase using a 1/4 inch seam allowance. Press the seam.
Step 12: Turn the pillowcase right side out and insert the pillow.
Following these easy steps, you can create a variety of quilted pillows to accent your home.