Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Tutorial: 24" Modern Medallion Pillow

Thanks to some helpful bloggers, I now know how to fix my tutorial tab so multiple projects can be shown, with links to each. Over the next few days I hope to have the changes in place.

This tutorial is for a Modern Medallion Pillow which has a hidden zipper, and I'll also post the tutorial for the zipper separately for easy reference.

This tutorial is copyright 2013 by The Colorful Fabriholic, for personal use only.  Please do not pin without attribution.
Modern Medallion Pillow
Finished Size: approximately 23 inches square; uses a 24" pillow form.
Block size: 4" finished
  • Background Fabric, 5/8 yard
  • Featured print and pillow back, 3/4 yard
  • Fusible interfacing:  If 24" wide, need 3/4 yard. If narrower, need one yard.
  • 20-22" invisible zipper
  • Batting, 27" square
  • Lining, 26" square (muslin, etc.)
  • From featured print:
    • First cut one 24-1/2" square for pillow back.
    • Cut 8  4-1/2" squares
    • Cut 16  3-3/8" squares
  • From background fabric:
    • Cut 28  4-1/2" squares
    • Cut 8  3-3/8" squares

Block Construction: Use 1/4" seams.
Blocks A & B 

All blocks A & B:
  • On the wrong side of the 3-3/8" squares, draw a diagonal line from corner to corner. You will stitch on this line and cut the unneeded part away. (If you want bonus HSTs from the cut away part, mark another line 1/2" away from the first.)
  • Lay printed patches on solid squares, and solid patches on print, right sides together. Stitch on the diagonal from corner to corner. Chain piece all blocks.
Sewn Blocks
  • Cut between the lines of stitching (or 1/4" outside the seam if not making bonus HSTs). Use the bonus HSTs for another project.
  • Pressing seam allowances: This is important so your seams will nest together during assembly and yield nice points and well-matched seams.
    • Block A: Press seam allowances toward the print patch on 9 (nine) blocks and toward the background for the remainder of the blocks.
    • Block B: Press half the blocks toward the print and half toward the ground.
 Finished Blocks
  •  Plain blocks: you should have 12 plain 4-1/2" squares of background fabric.
Front Assembly: Use 1/4" seams except where noted.
  • Lay the blocks out as shown, starting in the center. Note the direction of seam allowances as shown by the arrows.
Layout showing direction of seam allowances
  •  Join blocks into rows. Rows 1, 3, 5: Press seam allowances to the left. Rows 2, 4, 6: Press seam allowances to the right.  
  • Join rows for completed top. Press seam allowances as desired.
Quilting the front:
  • Layer lining face down, batting, top face up, and pin baste.
  • Quilt in the ditch around the medallion.
  • Quilt remainder of medallion and background as desired.  Sample has straight-line quilting in the medallion, parallel to the edges of it, about 1/2" away using the walking foot as a guide.  Sample has a small meander (large stipple) quilted in the background.
  • Square up and trim top. After quilting it may measure slightly less than 24-1/2inches square. Note the actual measurement. (Sample measured 24".)
Quilted front

Pillow Back:
  • Fuse interfacing to wrong side of 24-1/2" back following manufacturer's directions for fusing. Piece interfacing if necessary.
  • Trim back to same size as pillow front if necessary.
Hidden Zipper:
  • Use 20-22" invisible zipper and instructions.
Invisible Zipper
  • If you do not have an Invisible Zipper foot, use your regular zipper foot and stitch as close to the coils as possible.
  • Open zipper and press coils flat as directed in the zipper instructions.
Press zipper
  •  Mark the right side of the pillow top 2" in from each side and mark the zipper to match, also right side up.
Mark pillow front and mark zipper
  • Pin zipper to top, right sides together, matching markings. Roll excess top out of the way as it will be to the right of the needle. Stitch the zipper, keeping the needle as close to the coil as possible. Backtack at both ends.
Stitch zipper
  • Mark the pillow back and the other side of the zipper like the front.
Mark back
  • Pin the zipper to the back, right sides together, matching marks.
Pin zipper to back
  • Stitch the zipper, again keeping the needle as close to the coil as possible. Backtack at both ends.
  • Holding the zipper tails out of the way, pin and sew the pillow front and back together from the edges to the end of the zipper stitching to complete the seam. The seam allowance will be about 1/2".
Sew remainder of seams from zipper to edge

  • Close the zipper. From the wrong side, press zipper seam allowances open. The right side will now look like this:
Hidden zipper, open above zipper pull, closed below.

  • Pin pillow back to pillow front, right sides together, zipper fully open. Sew, taking 1/2" seam allowances (approximately the same seam allowances as attaching the zipper) in order to keep the pillow square and symmetrical. Approaching the corners, shorten the stitch length and backtack on both sides of the corner.
  • Trim corners close to the stitching.
Trimming the corners
  • Turn pillow cover right side out, poking the corners out as sharp as possible.
  • Insert pillow form, pushing it well into the corners.
  • Zip closed (it will be a tight fit) and... DONE!
Finished pillow


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