Monday, April 26, 2021

Cushions for H2H

When I read guest blogger Carole's post on Sarah's blog, Confessions of a Fabric Addict, I immediately thought that's what I'll do for my neighbour to go with her quilt, make her a pretty cushion. I had made her a family couch time quilt which you can read about here. She works at one of our two grocery stores in town; we share part of our back fence. A single mum, she has two young boys, who are often babysat by her mum, who has a dog, Shadow. It was through Shadow and our dog, Rocco, that we first met.
Here is her very own cushion, which is meant as just for S.

I wanted to make hearts for love and gratitude, and in bright happy spring colours. In my stash, I came across four half yard pieces I'd picked up a year or two ago at Connecting Threads, (affiliate link) and thought they'd be perfect.
Sidenote: THIS is why I buy (well, have bought, I've been behaving for over a year now) fabric randomly, with no project in mind, just because I like it, or the colours look good together. A friend said  years ago, "You know, fabric is to us what paints are to an artist," and that has stuck with me. I can shop my stash, play, pet, and sew squirrelly projects with abandon!
I had about 1/3 yard left of a Benartex white solid for the background, so off to town I went.

Then I went on another shopping spree in my stash 😁 to find prints that would work with these colours. I had some of this happy rainbow-coloured print left from the backing of an RSC quilt, and I thought it would work for S's cushion.

Yes! However, using it for the outer borders meant I did not have enough for backing. Should I just use it for binding, and one of the heart fabrics for the backing? Or, could I make it work...

I made it work, and was really pleased with the band down the centre. I overlap my backs by about 5" so I figured it would be good even with a fat pillow form...

And as you can see, it's excellent. I used the same green for the binding. S and her mum are often out puttering around in their back yard, and from what I see of it, along with the front on my walks, S loves flowers, so I think the green and the bright happy colours is her.

I quilted it with straight lines an inch apart, alternating them from vertical to horizontal. It's a neat effect.
I stitched in the ditch around the blocks and sashing and then did two lines in the border. Clean, crisp and modern, letting the fabrics and hearts shine.

One thing I did for the second time, a tip from Amy @amyscreativeside during the Quilt Fest, is not to press my binding in half lengthwise before applying it to the quilt. It saves time, though not a lot when it's only two strips for this cushion cover, but still.

It still makes me twitch a bit lol as I sew it onto the quilt, but as you can see from the finish, it turns out just fine.

Why make one cushion when you A. made a ton of hearts, and B. can make two in about the same amount of time?

One of my yoga students, J, is another essential worker at our other grocery store in town. She's about my age, and my heart goes out to her as she hasn't been to yoga since the gyms and studios were first shut down over a year ago. They reopened last summer, but she didn't return, thinking it just too risky. I do know she misses yoga a lot.
I think she may do it via my YouTube channel where I've uploaded a bunch of the classes I run through Instagram Live on Tuesdays and Thursdays, but I'm not sure. In my 'shopping spree', I found this Amy Butler yard I'd picked up also at Connecting Threads and thought it would work, and oh yes, it does. This one felt right for J. (Hint: check out the sales section at Connecting Threads; it's awesome.)

I quilted it again with straight lines, using my walking foot, this time ignoring the sashing and quilting them 1/2" apart all in one direction. Wow, it has quite a different look/vibe doesn't it?!
The sashing just melts away.

These things do fascinate me I must admit.

Here is the back, nice and flat, again a 5" overlap, and bound with the turquoise.

With this healthy overlap, it's a bit of a 'stuff!' to stuff the pillow form inside, but as you can see below, the pillow form doesn't show.

I love the above set-up, a shot I first saw on Allison's blog, Cluck Cluck Sew, so I got MacGyver to take the photo while I balanced the cushion!

And a hero shot, as my friend Susan calls them, in front of the azalea:

I used Isacord polyester threads to quilt these, and Aurifil to topstitch the turquoise binding down. The polyester threads are beautiful to sink into the quilt, and have a pretty sheen to them.

I have laundered S's family quilt, and it came out super snuggly and crinkly, so hopefully I'll spot her tomorrow in her back yard and I can give these both to her. As for J's cushion, I'll have to find out when she's working and hopefully surprise her on the job this week! 

I kept notes as I went, so I may write this up as a tutorial. I also still have two heart blocks and the pieces for a third, so I think I need to make a fourth heart block and a third cushion!

Quilt Stats:
Pattern: Original design
Size:  18.5"
Fabric: Stash and two scraps
Backing:  Stash
Batting: polyester
Quilted: on my Bernina
Threads: pieced Madeira polyester; quilted with Isacord polyester

Linking up


  1. I love these cushions! I've been shopping my stash this year too.

  2. Beautiful! Nice and bright and feel good colors!

  3. Both pillows are so nice! I especially like the print in the first one. I'd definitely have snatched that up if I had come across it while shopping. I definitely buy fabric because it appeals to me; I rarely shop with a pattern in mind. It's just really fun to see my stash fabrics play together!

  4. Both pillows will add a breathe of spring to their recipient's homes.

  5. Doesn't it make you feel go to make projects like these, something made just out of love!!! I know it does me. Great colors I love the borders and you picked all the right colors for the hearts.

  6. The coordinating prints you found for the hearts are perfect. I hope that you are able to gift the quilt and pillow to S today and that the right timing works out for J this week as well. <3

  7. Both beautiful pillows. I love the hear pattern and yes it does so quickly. The border on the first is "to die for" LOL. You are so generous.

  8. Hi Sandra! What a lovely cushion. I know it will be received and enjoyed with all the thoughtfulness that you made it with. It's such pretty fabrics that look so Springy! ~smile~ Roseanne

  9. You are so generous & I'm sure the cushions will be so appreciated. They are gorgeous & your hero shots are perfect!!!! I've also been using my stash for this last year & possibly will have a Dreami for this month made entirely from it. One you won't recognise as I've not quilted the one I was going to use yet(smile). Take care, stay safe & huggles.

  10. Sandra those pillows are perfect for Hometown Heroes. The fabrics are stunning. Your chosen recipients fit that description to a T! I love Connecting Threads and can’t believe how quickly my order came! I might need to go check their fabrics. I do have something in mind for an upcoming project. 😉

  11. Such pretty pillows!! I really love the multi colored fabric on the back on that fist cushion, so bright! And the green to make it works look fabulous!

  12. These pillows are so fresh with their modern prints and colors!! I bet the recipients were thrilled. Sweet, sweet gifts for workers who have had to be a lot more brave than many of us this past more-than-a-year.

  13. What awesome thoughtful gifts!!! And they are so pretty - I love the random pieces, and fabric is paint concept!!!

  14. This is an adorable pillow and so thoughtful. S will love it and I am doing much the same with my collecting. I was very use to being in a store working a few days a week and find my blenders sadly lacking in amount. Too small doesn't I am buying 1 yard of blenders when I see them and a few fun prints along the way!