This is another post that was meant to go up over a year ago. Last year I was in Target (well, I was actually in Target yesterday and a couple days before that and, well, I’m in there a lot), but a year ago when I was in there, I was looking for a tablecloth. I didn’t happen to find one that particular time, but I did find these adorable “Thankful” place mats on a clearance shelf for $3.49. I don’t use place mats, but I couldn’t pass them up. I fired up my amazing Cartwheel app on my phone and got an extra 30% off, making them just over $3 each. I used one to put in a frame in my dining room (I had to cut it a little to fit).And I used the other one to make a super cute pillow! Decorative pillows are so expensive, especially when you like changing them out for the different seasons. The place mats are already all sewn together and just take a little deconstructing and reconstructing to make into a beautiful cheap throw pillow. Yes, I can make beautiful and cheap work in the same sentence. It’s in my blood. Here are two place mat throw pillows I had set out for Thanksgiving that I made. For my step-by-step picture tutorial, I’ll be using a Christmas place mat I bought this year. I actually already gave it away in a gift exchange, but will be making myself another one this week. This place mat was not on sale and was $4.99 from Target. That’s still inexpensive for a nice decorative pillow.Pretty much all you need is a place mat (making sure that it is one with two layers sewn together), a small needle and thread (that is a close match to thread color already used), some scissors and the pillow fluff (which you can buy at a craft store or reuse from an older pillow, like I did).
Start by carefully taking your needle (or a seam ripper if you have one or carefully use an exacto knife blade- make sure to not cut the fabric, just the threads holding it together) and running it along the bottom left corner of the place mat, working apart the threads to form a little hole. Then use your fingers to open it up a little more. You want it to be big enough for you to easily fill with pillow fluff, but not too big so that you are resewing the whole bottom. Then start filling. Work the fluff around with your hands until it is the consistency (or fluffiness) you want. Then double up your thread, thread your needle and tie a knot on the bottom. Sew up the bottom hole, making sure that the stitches are fairly tight and close together. Overlap both sides of your hole to catch the original stitching, to ensure strength. This is what mine looked like when it was done. Not perfect, but hard to see when it is down on the bottom. And here it is all finished! This project is so easy and quick that it can be done in less than 30 minutes. It makes great decorations for your own house or nice last minute gifts for family or friends. And something I realized afterwards is that I should have ironed it (according to instructions) before filling. But I can iron it carefully now too or maybe a quick spin in the dryer will help loosen the wrinkles in the middle. That’s it! Happy Pillow Making!