Getting Crafty

My crafting/sewing gene has been quite strong lately. Maybe it's the promise of spring that has energized me, or perhaps it's all the fabulous blogs I've been reading lately (I'm planning on posting a blog roll so you too can check out some of the truly fascinating talent I've discovered coming from some incredible moms!) ... whatever it is, I have several projects rattling around in my mind.

So Friday night I sat down and completed a pillow for my son's room. It turned out so cute, that I wanted to share!
And because it turned out so cute, I thought you might want to try your hand at it to. So below I've posted a tutorial on how I made this. Unfortunately, I didn't think about taking step-by-step pictures until after it was finished, so you'll have to forgive the lack of imagery. Next time, I promise, I'll snap pics as I go.

Cowboy Silhouette Pillow Sham (for a standard 16x16 throw pillow; adjust sizes accordingly for larger or smaller)

2 yards of fabric for pillow sham
1 yard for contrasting horse silhouette
Stitch Witchery or Steam A Seam
Craft rope (I got mine at Michael's)
Thread (1 to match your dominant fabric; 1 to coordinate or contrast with your horse fabric)

1) Cut out fabric. For a 16x16 sham, cut three pieces from your main fabric. Your front piece should measure 17x17, your two back pieces should measure 14x17 each.

2) Cut out horse (or any other design element) silhouette using a stencil as your guide. I used this horse stencil from Pink of Perfection.

3) Center your silhouette in the middle of your 17x17 piece of fabric and adhere with Stitch Witchery or Steam A Seam. This is so the silhouette won't shift when you're sewing it.

4) Choose a decorative stitch and stitch around your silhouette.

5) Take your rope and pin it to the fabric framing your silhouette in any design you desire. Then sew it into place. Because the rope is so thick, you'll have to pick your presser foto up several times as you sew to keep the fabric moving. You may also want to use the hand wheel if your machine won't stitch through the rope.
(Note: I actually did this step AFTER I'd assembled the pillow, and I really regretted it. I was afraid that if I sewed the rope on first, it would make it difficult for me to sew the pillow because the rope would add too much bulk at some places. When I was finished, I realized I could have attached the rope before assembling the pillow. So do it now, and it will save you a lot of time!)

6) Hem your two back pieces. At the top of one 14x17 piece, and at the bottom of another, do a rolled hem of approx. 1 inch, then stitch. This will be where you will insert the pillow form into the sham, and these two pieces will overlap to cover the form. Again, sorry I don't have pics, just visualize the back of a sham you have, and you'll know what I mean.

7) Now pin your front piece to your two back pieces. Lay the three pieces RIGHT sides together. Pin one 14x17 piece to the top of the 17x17 front, then pin the other 14x17 piece to the bottom of the 17x17 front. The two back pieces should have the hemmed edges overlapping several inches. Then sew a 1/2 seam all the way around the perimeter of the sham. Turn the sham inside out, and ... you're done! Now enjoy the result of your handiwork!
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