Before we left for our 4th of July vacation, my mom asked if I could help her transform a sweater into a pillow. She had found the pillow at a yard sale that she visited with a friend, and her friend loved the sweater!

When I saw the sweater, the first thing I did was seam rip all the stitches that held the bottom hem together. I also seam ripped the sleeves where they came together. This gave us the ability to use the sleeves for a second pillow. By seam ripping the bottom seam, it gave us the ability to see more of the pillow design.

The sweater was a pretty good size so we bought an 18″ square pillow form at Joanns and a bolster pillow.

We cut the main part of the sweater into a 19″ square. When I sew sweater pillows, I use a 1/2″ seam allowance. If you feel the sweater is not tightly woven, then you should iron an interfacing onto the back of the sweater before you cut it apart. IMG_20170703_152526

Place right sides together and pin it A LOT!IMG_20170703_152924

Now sew with a 1/2″ seam allowance straight stitch around the whole pillow. We slightly rounded each of our corners. Remove all the pins, and then zigzag around the edges – this just helps make sure your sweater doesn’t unravel. Unbutton your sweater and turn it inside out. Fit your pillow form inside!

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The front of the pillow

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The back of the pillow

To do the smaller pillow, I first cut the sleeves off of the remnant of the sweater.IMG_20170703_153725

I cut the sweaters into rectangles. The pillow we bought is 12″ x 16″. IMG_20170703_154948

I then took each piece and zigzagged the center seam of each of them as shown in the picture above. I wanted my seam to lay flat when I sewed the two pieces together. Next I placed them right sides together and did a 1/2″ straight stitch down the center. I then cut the sweater to be 17″ wide x 13″ tall.

I didn’t have enough sweater to make the back from the sweater so I found a coordinating piece of fabric and made an envelop enclosure. (Note to self: I need to write a better tutorial here.) I like a 3″ overlap between the pillows so I cut 2 pieces of fabric:

  • 13″ tall x 6.5″ wide
  • 13″ tall x 18.5″ wide (okay this piece was probably too big but I would rather it be too big than too small)

On the 6.5″ and 18.5″ sides, I turned the fabric over 1/2″ and then over another 1/2″ so I could make the seam.

I placed the two pieces together (so that the smaller section was underneath) on top of the sweater piece and made sure there was a 3″ overlap. Then I sewed around with another 1/2″ seam allowance and then zigzagged the edges.

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The front of the pillow

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The back of the pillow

 

Enjoy your upcycled sweaters! Happy sewing!

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